Softball Collects Multiple MVC Accolades

first_imgThe Drake University softball team, which claimed the 2018 Missouri Valley Conference regular season title, claimed multiple MVC honors Wednesday night at the MVC Awards Banquet at the West Des Moines Sheraton. Smith is on the All-MVC Second Team for the second time in her career after being on the 2016 team. A two-way standout, she is a pitcher/utility player selection, who is 9-3 with the second-lowest ERA in the MVC behind Newman at 1.14 and is second in saves with seven. At the plate, Smith has crushed a team-best five home runs and 21 RBI. This is the second All-MVC accolade for Frank, who was tabbed to the 2016 All-MVC First Team. This season, she is batting .279 with six doubles, 15 RBI and 26 runs scored and is third on the team in stolen bases with 14. Frank has played in 46 games this season, primarily at second base.In her first season, Johnson is second on the team in batting average at .344 along with swiping a team-best 19 stolen bases. She has collected 44 hits, one triple, two home runs, six doubles and 23 RBI. Earlier this week, Johnson, who has played primarily in the outfield, earned her first career MVC Newcomer and Player of the Week awards. Jonas played in 42 games at catcher and helped the pitching staff have a tremendous season. She batted .250 with one double and six RBI.   Roemmich, who had an outstanding first season and was an All-MVC Second Team selection in 2017, is having a great sophomore season. This year, she leads the team in batting average at .360, triples with two, doubles with 12, walks with 24, runs scored with 34, hits with 58 and slugging percentage at .478. Roemmich, who has started every game at shortstop, also hit her first career home run this season and has driven in a career-high 21 runs. She has a career batting average of .369, which is already No. 2 all-time at Drake. Roemmich blistered MVC pitching with a .429 batting average, which ranked third in the Valley. Calvert, DeAngelo and Griffith are the top MVC coaching staff for the second time in the past four seasons. The trio helped Drake win its third MVC regular season title in program history. Calvert, who is in 16th season as head coach, is the program’s all-time winningest coach. DeAngelo, who was a standout pitcher for Drake in the 1990s, is in her fifth season with the program while Griffith, who is from Dallas Center Grimes and played for SIUE, is in her sixth season at Drake. Newman, who missed nearly all of 2017 due to injury, has dominated in her return to the circle. This season, she is 19-3 with the second-lowest earned run average in the nation at 0.64 and has struck out 213, which is the second-best total in MVC. This past weekend, Newman moved to No. 1 all-time at Drake and No. 7 in MVC history in career strikeouts with 768. Newman, who won her first MVC Pitcher of the Year award in 2016, is 12-1 with a 0.41 ERA, has 137 strikeouts to 18 walks and tossed two no-hitters against Valley opponents in 2018. She helped at the plate with a .297 batting average, two home runs, three doubles and seven RBI in league play. This is the third time in her career, Newman, who is third all-time at Drake in wins with 61, has been selected to the All-MVC First Team.This is the first All-MVC honor for Maddox, who is batting .324 with four home runs, six doubles and a team-high 29 RBI. She batted .324 with two home runs and 14 RBI against MVC foes. Maddox played in all 51 games with 49 starts at first base. Timmons is having a great first season in the circle. She is 13-4 with a 1.97 ERA and 119 strikeouts in 110.0 innings. Timmons has combined with Newman and Smith to compile a 1.21 team ERA, which ranks fourth in the nation. Timmons was 8-0 with a 2.44 ERA against Valley teams. She was named MVC Newcomer of the Week twice and MVC Pitcher of the Week once. Sophomore Mandi Roemmich (West Des Moines, Iowa) was the first-ever Drake softball player to be named MVC Player of the Year while redshirt junior Nicole Newman (Madison, Wis.) was the MVC Pitcher of the Year for the second time in her career. Head coach Rich Calvert and assistant coaches Tina DeAngelo and Kasey Griffith were tabbed the MVC Coaching Staff of the Year.Sophomore Sarah Maddox (Henderson, Nev.), Newman, junior Taryn Pena (Columbia, Ill.) and Roemmich were picked to the All-MVC First Team while senior Tasha Alexander (Eddyville, Iowa), junior Kennedy Frank (Chesterfield, Mo.), freshman Macy Johnson (Winterset, Iowa), senior Kailee Smith (Murrieta, Calif.) and freshman Nicole Timmons (Davenport, Iowa) were selected to the All-MVC Second Team. Junior catcher Gabbie Jonas (Omaha, Neb.) rounds out the awards as she was named to the MVC All-Defensive team. This is the second All-MVC selection for Pena, who was on the 2016 All-MVC Second Team. She made 49 starts at third base and is batting .297 with two home runs, 10 doubles, 16 runs scored and is tied with Maddox for the team lead in RBI with 29. Earlier this season, Pena was selected MVC Player of the Week and Scholar-Athlete of the Week for the first time in her career.This is the first all-conference award for Alexander, who has played in 50 games in center field and is batting .267 with four home runs, 25 RBI and is second on the team in stolen bases with 15. She raised her play in league action with a .313 batting average with one triple, two doubles and two home runs with 13 RBI. Alexander is No. 5 all-time in career stolen bases with 53. This season has been a banner year for Drake, which finished the regular season with a 41-10 overall record, including a 24-1 record in MVC games. Both totals are school records. The 24 league wins tied the all-time mark for an MVC program in regular season play. Since the Valley went to a 27-game league schedule in 2001, Drake is the only MVC team to suffer just one loss in regular season league play. The Bulldogs’ impressive winning percentage of .960 in conference games is a new league-record since the 27-game schedule was adopted.Drake is the No. 1 seed for the MVC Championship this week at Buel Field. The Bulldogs will open the tournament Friday in the first semifinal matchup at 4 p.m. Every game of the MVC Championship will be on ESPN+. Print Friendly Versionlast_img