Propelled by Candela Figueroa, Chipola finished the 2019 season in a familiar place – for the fourth time in the past five seasons, the Indians finished their season in the NJCAA DI national championship game. It marked the third title in program history.
The native of Argentina made her way to the panhandle of Florida to pursue a dream of playing collegiate softball. After a stellar year, Figueroa caps off her junior college career by collecting the 2019 Dudley® NJCAA Division I Player of the Year award.
The 5’7 catcher/outfielder is from Entre Rios, Argentina had a .513 batting average, with a .650 on base percentage, a .975 slugging percentage. Her numbers include: 66 stolen bases, 61 walks, 14 home runs and 154 total bases.
Her honors include NJCAA Division I First Team All-American, NJCAA Division I All-Tournament Team, NJCAA Division I Tournament Most Valuable Player, First Team All-Panhandle Conference, Panhandle Conference Player of the Year and FCSAA First Team All-State.
Coach Belinda Hendrix says, "We cannot say enough about Candela (AKA Can Can). Not only is she an incredible player, she is also an amazing person. She is so grateful for the things this sport has given her. The impact she has had on our program is immeasurable."
On being named national player of the year, Figueroa says, "I am extremely happy to receive this award. I am also shocked because it feels unbelievable. I always dreamed of playing softball in college and I am forever grateful to Chipola for giving me the opportunity."
Figueroa will play for her national team this summer and attend Troy University in the fall.