PELLA–Central College baseball player A.J. Pierce (Ankeny, Centennial HS) and women's tennis player Sami Thompson (Knoxville) were recognized as the athletics department's top male and female senior academic performers.

The announcement was made in conjunction with the Student-Athlete Advisory Council's Dutchies Awards event staged Sunday evening.

The awards are based on cumulative grade point average. Pierce, who is graduating with an exercise science degree in just three years, has a 3.98 GPA. He has pitched and played first base for the Dutch. In seven pitching appearances during his first two seasons, he struck out six batters in 15.0 innings. He was named to the 2019 American Rivers academic all-conference team.

Pierce will soon enroll in chiropractic school at Logan University in Chesterfield, Missouri.

A four-time varsity letterwinner for Central, Thompson has a 3.99 GPA as a biology major. She posted a 13-9 career singles record and a 7-5 doubles mark. A three-time academic all-conference honoree, she received her team's 2019 Hardest Worker Award.

Thompson is planning to attend the Southern College of Optometry in Memphis, Tennessee.

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