Three Lady Eagles earn All-SAC honors
ROCK HILL, S.C. – Carson-Newman centerfielder Cassidy Skeen (Knoxville, Tenn.) is one of three Lady Eagles to be named to the 2012 All-South Atlantic Conference Softball Teams, the league announced on Wednesday.
Skeen earns first team All-SAC honors, while first baseman Caitlyn Lance (East Ridge, Tenn.) and pitcher Mary Shealy (Clinton, S.C.) were named to the second team.
Skeen batted .331 for the Lady Eagles starting every game in centerfield during her senior season. She bounced back from a season-ending knee injury as a junior to put together 18 multi-hit games and steal 11 bases. She also had three home runs during the year, all were inside-the-park.
Lance anchored a potent Lady Eagle offense during her sophomore season. She batted .372, which led the team, with 15 doubles and six home runs. She also reached base at the highest clip of any Lady Eagles, finishing the regular season with a .457 on-base percentage. She hit a home run in C-N's 6-2 win over then-No. 6 Armstrong Atlantic State in March, and had five RBIs and a home run in a 16-8 win over Georgia College.
Shealy was named to the second team after notching 31 pitching victories, which led the nation, during her senior season. She is still trying to add to a resume which includes SAC Player of the Year honors as a junior, and, if last week's numbers are any indication, seems to have C-N primed for SAC Tournament run. She was 6-2 with a 1.49 ERA in the week's final season. She also hit .410 with three home runs, including the game-winner against Mars Hill.
For the year, the Clinton, S.C. native hit six home runs in limited at-bats after a mid-season injury. She hit .302 for the season with five doubles. She picked up her 100th career pitching victory on Sunday in a lopsided sweep of Limestone in Jefferson City.
The trio has led C-N to a 31-20 record this season and a fourth-place finish in the South Atlantic Conference race. C-N opens play in the 2012 Food Lion SAC Tournament on Thursday against host Tusculum at 10:30 a.m. The Pioneers are the No. 5 seed and C-N is the No. 4 seed. Carson-Newman swept the regular season doubleheader with Tusculum in Greeneville, winning 9-0 and 6-0.
Anderson's Abby Child was named SAC Player of the Year to lead the list of award winners.
In just her second season on campus, Child hit .432 during the regular season and led the SAC with 57 runs batted in. The shortstop also finished second in home runs with 14, third in hits with 64 and third in runs scored with 46.
Behind Child – who also earned All-SAC First Team accolades -- Anderson went 35-11 overall and finished third in the regular-season conference standings at 12-6.
SAC regular-season champion Lenoir-Rhyne led the way with three All-SAC First Team selections, including the conference's Pitcher of the Year Dawon Millwood.
Millwood went 28-6 in the circle during the regular season and led the conference with 180 strikeouts, 14 shutouts and an opponent's batting average of just .190. She also threw two no-hitters.
This is the second-straight season Millwood has won the SAC Pitcher of the Year award.
Also earning All-SAC First Team honors from L-R were first baseman Jessica Fellmeth and catcher Sarah Atkins. Fellmeth finished second in the SAC in RBI with 48 and fourth in home runs with 12, while Atkins was first in walks with 32, third in RBI with 45 and fifth in home runs with 11.
Joining the L-R duo on the First Team infield were Anderson second baseman Jessica Neidigh and Mars Hill third baseman Natalie Haithcox.
Neidigh had a huge regular season for AU, as she led the SAC in batting average at .463, hits with 81, runs scored with 60 and total bases with 117 en route to also being named the league's Freshman of the Year.
Haithcox has had a big year as well, finishing atop the league-leaders with 17 home runs and a .524 on-base percentage.
Joining Skeen in the First Team outfield were Brevard's Brittany Fowler and Lincoln Memorial's Briana Mulkey.
Skeen finished the regular season with 54 hits, Fowler hit .333, and Mulkey led the conference with 27 stolen bases.
Rounding out the First Team were designated player Amanda Snow from LMU, Tusculum utility player Kaytlin Stroinski and Tusculum pitcher Elizabeth Johnson, who finished third in the SAC with 25 wins, second in complete games with 30 and sixth in strikeouts with 122.
After leading her team to 42-11 overall record and a 14-4 SAC mark, Lenoir-Rhyne's Shena Hollar was selected as the SAC Coach of the Year – an honor she also took home in 2011, 2010, 2008 and 2006.
The All-Conference Second Team was announced on Wednesday as well. Making up the team's infield was Wingate catcher Betsy Braswell, Carson-Newman first baseman Caitlyn Lance, Brevard second baseman Chelsi Mallory, LMU shortstop Bridget Eicher and L-R third baseman Haily Jarman.
Also earning selections to the Second Team were outfielders Marie Mauhar from L-R, Brittany Coursen from L-R and Rebecca Martin from Anderson. They were joined by AU designated player Amber Duncan and Newberry utility player Brittany Phillips.
Rounding out the All-SAC Second Team were pitchers Kayla Clemens of Brevard and Brittany Murray of Catawba.
SAC Player of the Year: Abby Child, AU
SAC Pitcher of the Year: Dawon Millwood, L-R
SAC Freshman of the Year: Jessica Neidigh, AU
SAC Coach of the Year: Shena Hollar, L-R
2012 All-SAC Softball Team
C - Sarah Atkins, L-R
1B - Jessica Fellmeth, L-R
2B - Jessica Neidigh, AU
SS - Abby Child, AU
3B - Natalie Haithcox, MHC
OF - Briana Mulkey, LMU
OF - Brittany Fowler, BC
OF - Cassidy Skeen, C-N
DP - Amanda Snow, LMU
Util. - Kaytlin Stroinski, TC
SP - Dawon Millwood, L-R
SP - Elizabeth Johnson, TC
C - Betsy Braswell, WU
1B - Caitlyn Lance, C-N
2B - Chelsi Mallory, BC
SS - Bridget Eicher, LMU
3B - Haily Jarman, L-R
OF - Marie Mauhar, L-R
OF - Brittany Coursen, L-R
OF - Rebecca Martin, AU
DP - Amber Duncan, AU
Util. - Brittany Phillips, NEW
SP - Kayla Clemens, BC
SP - Brittany Murray, CAT
SP - Mary Shealy, C-N