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O'Dell, Grande, Rodriguez selected to NEAC All-Conference Softball Team

O'Dell, Grande, Rodriguez selected to NEAC All-Conference Softball Team

GANSEVOORT, N.Y. – The North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) has announced its 2013 Softball North and South Division All-Conference Team selections, with first and second team honors being awarded to the top 20 players for each division as selected by the conference coaches, regardless of position. 

In the South Division, Penn State Berks freshman Jess Epler (Reading, Pa.) was named the NEAC Player of the Year after a phenomenal season for the Nittany Lions.   The freshman got it done both at the plate and on the mound for Penn State Berks, as she currently leads the conference in 14 different statistical hitting and pitching categories, including the hitting triple crown of batting average (.656), homeruns (9) and RBI (60) in addition to earned run average (0.47) and shutouts (11) .  Her 17 wins, 123 strikeouts and batting average against of .116 on the mound were also second-best in the NEAC as well.  Nationally, Epler currently ranks first across all of the NCAA Division III in batting average, on-base percentage (.756), RBI per game (1.69), slugging percentage (1.204), and walks per game (1.03), while being second in both ERA and shutouts.

Her dominance on the season earned her five NEAC Student-Athlete of the Week awards spread out between the weekly player and pitching honors.  She also led Penn State Berks to their first-ever NEAC South Division regular season title and the right to host this year’s conference tournament.    

Penn State Abington sophomore Michaela Drogalis (Croydon, Pa.) earned NEAC South Pitcher of the Year honors after a fantastic season for the Nittany Lions.  The Abington ace started an incredible 33 of the Nittany Lions’ 37 contests on the mound and completed a conference-leading 30 of them, while posting a program-record and a NEAC-best 20 wins on the season to go along with 109 strikeouts and school-record six shutouts in a whopping 207.1 innings of action.  She started and completed all 20 of Abington’s divisional contests, finishing 13-7 with 61 K’s and a 3.43 ERA through 128.2 innings pitched.  Drogalis was also strong at the plate, batting .284 (25-of-88) with three homeruns, seven doubles, 24 RBI, 22 runs scored and 14 walks drawn. 

The NEAC South Rookie of the Year honor went to Penn State Harrisburg freshman Rieley Loch (Madison Township, Pa.) after an outstanding year for the Nittany Lions.  The utility player slugged .538 on the year with 42 hits, nine doubles, three triples, two homeruns, 20 RBI and 63 total bases, placing her in the top-11 among the conference leaders in each of those categories.   The five-tool player also scored 26 runs and swiped five bags while batting a team-best .359 (42-for-117) through 37 contests.   

The NEAC South Coach of the Year award went to David Hoch after a fine season guiding the Penn State Abington Nittany Lions.  Hoch helped the Nittany Lions up their win total in the division by five games from a year ago, as they finished 13-7 in the NEAC South to clinch the third and final divisional seed in this year’s championship tournament.  Abington also improved its overall win total by eight games from a year ago, as they are currently 20-17 overall after being a year removed from finishing 12-22.

 

The South Division All-Conference selections are as follows:

 

         Name                       Institution                 Yr.          Pos.             Hometown

South Division All-Conference First Team

Jess Epler

Penn State Berks

Fr.

P/INF

Reading, Pa.

Kelly O'Dell

College of Saint Elizabeth

Sr.

INF

Stewartsville, N.J.

Kara Boyd

Penn State Harrisburg

Sr.

P/UTIL

Alexandria, Pa.

Casey Hafer

Penn State Berks

Jr.

P/INF

Douglassville, Pa.

Tara Fields

Wilson College

Sr.

CF

Berryville, Va.

Alicia Johnson

Gallaudet University

Sr.

OF

San Jose, Calif.

Michaela Drogalis

Penn State Abington

So.

P/INF

Croydon, Pa.

Gabrielle Wolfe

Penn State Harrisburg

So.

P/UTIL

New Milford, Pa.

Megan Schneck

Wilson College

Jr.

2B

Bethel, Pa.

Marissa Ruggiero

Penn State Berks

Sr.

OF

Easton, Pa.

South Division All-Conference Second Team

Noelle Grande

College of Saint Elizabeth

Sr.

CF

Parsippany, N.J.

Colleen Hoge

Penn State Berks

Fr.

C/INF

Kennett Square, Pa.

Madellyn Rodriguez

College of Saint Elizabeth

So.

1B

Hoboken, N.J.

Sheila O'Hagan

Penn State Abington

Fr.

P

Orrtanna, Pa.

Taylor Crouse

Wilson College

Fr.

P

Orrtanna, Pa.

Trish Watson

Penn State Abington

Sr.

INF/OF

Bensalem, Pa.

Rieley Loch

Penn State Harrisburg

Fr.

C

Madison Township, Pa.

Missy Lamm

Penn State Berks

Fr.

SS

Temple, Pa.

Ashleen McCullough

Wilson College

So.

SS

Havertown, Pa.

Ericka Love

Penn State Harrisburg

So.

3B

Harrisburg, Pa.

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