MAC Announces Softball Players and Pitchers of the Week

Updated 3/23/2010
West Division Player of the Week
Brooke Gates, Toledo, So., SS, Sylvania, OH/Southview

Brooke Gates led the Rockets' offense as UT went 3-4 last week. The sophomore shortstop went 12-for-23 (.522) while scoring a team-best six runs and ripping four doubles. She also drove in five runs and was a perfect 5-for-5 stealing bases. In Toledo's 5-4 win over Canisius on Saturday, Gates hit a two-run double to tie the game in the seventh, stole third base and scored the game-winning run on a fielder's choice. She also extended her hitting streak to 11 games and had four multi-hit efforts on the week, including a 3-for-4 performance against Southern Utah on Wednesday.

East Division Co-Player of the Week
Krista Hansen, Akron, Sr., 2B, Arlington, Wash./Arlington

Senior Krista Hansen led Akron in hits at the Rebel Spring Games posting 11 while averaging .407 at the plate. Contributing in multiple aspects, Hansen added six RBI, six runs and four stolen bases in her performance. One of Hansen's best showings on the week was in UA's 15-0 win over Fairleigh Dickinson in which Hansen posted three RBI, two hits and one run. Grabbing a hit in seven of eight games, Hansen also added three against a tough University of Tennessee-Martin pitching squad.

Daniela Torres, Miami, So., 3B, Harwood Heights, Ill./Lane Tech College Prep
Was one of Miami's top hitters during the week with hits in all six of Miami's games. That included a 3-for-5 performance in the RedHawk's marathon 14 inning game against Western Illinois on Tuesday. She drove in three runs with bases loaded double in Miami's 6-1 win over Robert Morris. She led the team with six RBI's during the week. Also scored four runs, had three doubles and her second career home run for 14 total bases and a slugging percentage of .7000. She also drew two walks and made 12 assists in the field.

West Division Pitcher of the Week
Elizabeth Milian, Ball State, Sr., Grand Blanc, Mich./Grand Blanc

Leading Ball State from the circle in a 2-1 win against No. 3 Missouri in the DeMarini Invitational in Columbia, Mo. Friday, Elizabeth Milian gave up just four hits to the Tigers' eager bats for an earned run average of 1.0. This was the first time in six meetings that Ball State defeated Missouri. Following the Missouri game, Milian took the mound for three innings to relieve Ball State's Audra Sanders against Northwestern. She gave up no runs and just three hits to the Wildcats. Then, due to snow on Saturday, Milian pitched indoors against Northern Colorado and posted a nearly perfect game. The ace gave up just one hit and no runs to secure her seventh shutout of the season in a 5-0 win. Pitching 17 innings in two days, Milian gave up just one run, pitched 13 strikeouts and recorded a 0.41 earned run average.

East Division Pitcher of the Week
Kylie Reynolds, Kent State, Sr., Greensboro, Ga./Morgan County

Reynolds threw her sixth career no-hitter against Albany Saturday and became the MAC's all-time strikeout leader. After fanning 13 batters against Albany, Reynolds earned her second win of the day in a relief appearance against Siena. In three innings against the Saints, she struck out eight and retired all nine batters faced, giving her 22 strikeouts in 10 hitless innings on the day. Reynolds went 2-1 with a 0.82 ERA in three weekend appearances. She struck out 31 batters in 17 innings, running her career strikeout total to 992. Reynolds passed Central Michigan's Amber Puchalski who previously held the league strikeout record for six seasons.

Additional Nominees for Player of the Week
Jessie Ware, Ball State, Sr., 3B, Phoenix, Ariz./Hamilton
In ten at bats, Jessie Ware tallied a team-leading five hits, including one double and one triple, for a batting average of .500. Following this weekend, her season batting average improved to a .390. Ware slugged her double hit against the University of Missouri, ranked third in the country. The double initiated Ball State's scoring drive against the Tigers and secured the Cardinals' 2-1 win. At third base, Ware notched five putouts and had no errors throughout the three game weekend.

Jessica Griffin, Buffalo, Fr., 1B, Placentia, CA/Valencia
Jessica Griffin led the Bulls for the weekend, batting .357 and slugging .500. She had a hit in Buffalo's extra innings win over Oakland and finished the weekend with one RBI and two doubles. Griffin also led the team defensively, earning 33 putouts at first base.

Christina Novak, Central Michigan, Sr., CF, Rockford, Mich./Rockford
Christina Novak's bat picked up in a big way over the weekend as she hit .455 (5-for-11) in three games at the IU Classic. Novak led off the tournament with a home run, the 12th of her career and drove in four of the Chippewas' nine runs in a 9-3 victory over SIU-Edwardsville. She went 2-for-4 with a stolen base and a run scored in a comeback victory over host Indiana in CMU's second game of the weekend, before stealing another base in second win over the Hoosiers on Sunday, securing the tournament title for the Chippewas.

Jenny Scherer, Eastern Michigan, Sr., OF, Stow, Ohio
Jenny Scherer clubbed her fourth home run of the season and 40th of her career in helping climb the Eagles back from a 3-0 deficit against Northern Colorado to win 6-4. Her home run in the fourth inning tied the game and ingnited an offense that scored in each of the final four innings to pull out the victory.

Leah Archual, Kent State, Sr., OF, Tallmadge, Ohio/Tallmadge
Archual hit .357 on the week, going 5-for-8 with three runs scored in a pair of KSU victories Saturday. Her fifth-inning single against Albany ignited a three-run, two-out rally in a 3-0 victory. Archual also started a three-run, sixth inning rally in a 6-4 win over Siena.

Dani Parrish, Northern Illinois, So., OF, Plainfield, Ind./Plainfield
Dani Parrish hit safely in all four games she played for the Huskies at the USF The Game Tournament over the weekend with three multi-hit games. Her two-out, two RBI triple against Florida Gulf Coast capped off a four-run second inning and proved to be the difference in NIU's 7-5 victory over the Eagles. here .538 batting average was well over her season batting average of .303.

Jordan Paden, Ohio, Jr., Catcher, Walla Walla, Wash./Walla Walla
Paden continued her clutch hitting at the plate by hitting her team-best third homer of the year to help lead Ohio in a doubleheader. The junior catcher's solo homer in game two against Butler helped boost the team to the win. She also slugged a team-best .833 while hitting .333 overall in the 'Cats' two games.

Meredith Whitney, Western Michigan, So., P/1B, Scottsdale, Ariz.
Meredith Whitney led the Broncos offensively over the past week, hitting .333 with her team-leading fifth double of the year. She also had starts in the circle, lowering her season ERA by nearly three full runs.

Additional Nominees for Pitcher of the Week
Sharon Barr, Buffalo, Sr., Coarsegold, CA/Yosemite

Sharon Barr pitched four complete games on the weekend, striking out 21 batters in 28.0 innings of work. Barr earned her 16th start of the season on Sunday against Houston Baptist, which ties the UB all-time record for games started by a pitcher, with 64.

Kari Seddon, Central Michigan, Jr., St. Clair, Mich./St. Clair
Kari Seddon picked up her fifth and sixth victories of the season with a pair of complete game wins at the IU Classic over the weekend. The junior struck out 15 batters in her 14 innings of work. She carried a one-hit shutout into the seventh inning of a 9-3 win over SIU-Edwardsville in the tournament opener and stymied host Indiana to only two runs in an 8-2 win in the finale. The wins improve Seddon to 6-3 in her first season back from Tommy John surgery. She is averaging nearly a strikeout per game with 51 strikeouts in 54.2 innings in the circle.

Jessica Simpson, Miami, So., North Canton, Ohio/Hoover
Pitched 31.1 innings in four starts last week, including an impressive 13.1 innings in the 14 inning game against Western Illinois on Tuesday. Despite the workload, gave up only four earned runs for an ERA of 0.89 for the week. Also walked only two, including 0 in the game against WIU. Her other three games were all complete games with the win over Toledo being her third shutout of the season. She also struck out 19 during the week.

Morgan Bittner, Northern Illinois, So., Long Beach, Calif./Long Beach Poly
Bittner earned the win in the Huskies 7-5 victory over Florida Gulf Coast, allowing five runs on eight hits and two walks in five innings of work. She also made two relief appearances, in which she didn't allow an earned run in four and a third innings.

Emily Wethington, Ohio, Jr., New Palestine, Ind./Scecina Memorial
Wethington turned in solid effort in the circle in Ohio's second game of a doubleheader against a strong Butler team. The junior tossed a complete game, allowing just one run and scattering four hits while striking out six. Wethington also held the Bulldogs to just a .160 batting average overall on the game.

Hannah Rockhold, Toledo, Sr., Lima, OH/Bath
Hannah Rockhold went 3-1 on the mound to lead Toledo in last week's action. She started four games and went the distance in all four, limiting the opposition to a .217 batting average against while striking out 17 in 28.2 innings. Rockhold worked seven innings against Southern Utah and struck out a season-high eight while holding the Thunderbirds to just four hits. She shut out Robert Morris for five innings while allowing just three hits and no walks, and also picked up a win against Canisius after allowing just three earned runs in seven frames. Rockhold also pitched well in her lone loss of the week, a 2-0 setback against Michigan State, in which she allowed seven hits and just the two earned runs.

Meredith Whitney, Western Michigan, So., Scottsdale, Ariz./Desert Mountain
Made two starts in the circle for WMU this past week, fanning 10 batters during her 10.1 innings of work. Led the team in opposing batting average allowing batters to manage a .237 average. Had one complete game to bring her season total to three, which ties for the team lead.