Molly Child Named Daktronics Third-Team All-American

ROLLA, Mo. – Anderson University center fielder Molly Child capped her stellar sophomore season by being named to the 2014 Daktronics All-America Softball Team, as announced Wednesday afternoon. 

Joining Child from the South Atlantic Conference was senior second baseman Jamie Hockaday from Mars Hill and Carson-Newman outfielder Kelli Hensley.
 
Last week, the rising junior was named First-Team All-Southeast Region by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) and is a two-time First-Team All-South Atlantic Conference selection. Child was also named First-Team All-Region by Daktronics after leading the SAC with 62 runs scored and 130 total bases, while ranking in the top five in six additional offensive categories, including hits (75), doubles (13), home runs (14), RBI (53), batting average (.405), on-base percentage (.469) and slugging percentage (.703).

The left-handed slugger started all 55 games for the Trojans, while recording two grand slams during the regular season and posted a team-high 18-game hitting streak. Child tied for second on the team with 22 multiple-hit games and drove in more than one run on 14 occasions. 

Child also garnered SAC All-Tournament Team honors following a performance that saw the LaGrange, Ga. native go 5-for-14 (.357) during the tournament, including a pair of doubles, and scored four runs while driving in three runs.

Morgan Foley, who set an NCAA single-game record for strikeouts while pitching for the University of Indianapolis this season and Renee Erwin, one of the top hitters for a West Texas A&M team that spent much of the year as the top-ranked team in NCAA Division II, headed the All-America teams.

Foley, a sophomore named as the “Ron Lenz Pitcher of the Year”, made the Daktronics All-America first team for the second time in as many years. She is second in the nation with 356 strikeouts in the past year, which included a performance on May 2 against Rockhurst in which she fanned 30 hitters in a 13-inning win over the Hawks. Foley also finished second in the country with 33 wins against eight losses and posting a 1.55 earned run average.

Erwin, the “Ron Lenz Player of the Year”, helped lead West Texas A&M to the Division II World Series for the first time in school history, batting .457 with 17 home runs and 71 runs batted in and stealing 21 bases along the way. The Lady Buffs’ lineup hit .358 collectively during the season and head into the championship round ranked second in runs per game (8.4) and in home runs (total of 103).

Erwin was part of a first team in which all but one of the position players posted a batting average of .400 or better. The exception to that was Bellarmine’s Ally Foster, who was named at the utility-pitcher spot as much for her work in the circle, where she allowing opposing hitters to bat just .128 against her during the year.

Pittsburg State had two selections to the first team – its first-ever selections to the Daktronics squad since its inception - in outfielder Tiffany Brown, who hit .413 with 27 home runs – the most in NCAA Division II - and 74 runs batted in and designated player McKenzie Rynard, who posted a .436 batting average and belted 17 homers.

Five of the top nine home run hitters in Division II made the first team, including Valdosta State outfielder Courtney Albritton (.443 with 26 homers and 65 RBI) and LIU Post catcher Aly Dzierzynski (.439 with 25 home runs and 75 RBI) who rank second and third, respectively.

Armstrong Atlantic State shortstop Alexis Mercer has hit 22 homers this season while hitting .425 and Texas Woman’s first baseman Kendra Sancet, a .432 hitter, has hit 21 out of the park.

The top batting average among the first team selections is held by Hockaday, as she has batted .466 – 12th in Division II – and ranks among the top ten nationally in on-base percentage. Grand Valley State third baseman Miranda Cleary completes this year’s infield on the first team; Cleary hit .433 and drove in 57 runs for the Lakers in 2014.

This year’s first team utility player – the non-pitcher spot – went to Angelo State’s Darian Dunn, who recorded the fifth-best season ever for runs batted in as she knocked home 95 runs while hitting .411. The 95 RBI are the most in Lone Star Conference history.

The other pitchers named along with Foley were Tampa’s Kayla Cox, a three-time selection to the Daktronics first team and owner of an 18-3 record, 0.84 earned run average and 210 strikeouts in 159 innings in 2014 and Shippensburg’s Emily Estep, who went 25-4 with a 1.18 ERA and 208 strikeouts.

The team is sponsored by Daktronics, Inc., an acknowledged world leader in scoring, timing and programmable display systems for virtually every sport at every level of competition. The team is voted on by the members of the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).

This is the eighth season in which Daktronics, Inc., has sponsored the All-America team for softball.

FIRST TEAM:
PITCHER: KAYLA COX, Sr., University of Tampa (Riverview, Fla.)
PITCHER: MORGAN FOLEY, So., University of Indianapolis (Louisville, Ky.)
PITCHER: EMILY ESTEP, Sr., Shippensburg University (Chambersburg, Pa.)
CATCHER: ALI DZIERZYNSKI, Jr., LIU Post (Deer Park, N.Y.)
FIRST BASE: KENDRA SANCET, Jr., Texas Woman’s University (Magnolia, Texas)
SECOND BASE: JAMIE HOCKADAY, Sr., Mars Hill University (Butner, N.C.)
THIRD BASE: MIRANDA CLEARY, Sr., Grand Valley State University (Howell, Mich.)
SHORTSTOP: ALEXIS MERCER, Jr., Armstrong Atlantic State University (Rincon, Ga.)
OUTFIELD: COURTNEY ALBRITTON, Jr., Valdosta State University (Sycamore, Ga.)
OUTFIELD: TIFFANY BROWN, Sr., Pittsburg State University (Catoosa, Okla.)
OUTFIELD: RENEE ERWIN, Jr., West Texas A&M University (Anna, Texas)
DESIGNATED PLAYER: McKENZIE RYNARD, Jr., Pittsburg State University (Raymore, Mo.)
UTILITY: DARIAN DUNN, So., Angelo State University (Frisco, Texas)
UTILITY-PITCHER: ALLY FOSTER, So., Bellarmine University (Louisville, Ky.)

SECOND TEAM:
PITCHER: JACKIE BISHOP, Sr., Missouri Western State University (Kirksville, Mo.)
PITCHER: BRIANA LEE, Jr., Wayne State University, Mich. (Canton, Mich.)
PITCHER: KALYNN SCHROCK, Sr., University of Central Oklahoma (Choctaw, Okla.)
CATCHER: LINDSAY ERICKSON, Sr., Minnesota State University (Big Lake, Minn.)
FIRST BASE: BRIELLE REIGHN, So., Caldwell College (Runnemeade, N.J.)
SECOND BASE: NICOLE CHAVEZ, Jr., Dixie State University (Chino Hills, Calif.)
THIRD BASE: KRISTEN KNORR, Jr., Caldwell College (Monroeville, N.J.)
SHORTSTOP: SHELBY ALTMAN, Sr., Valdosta State University (Alma, Ga.)
OUTFIELD: MACIE COUEY, Sr., University of Alabama-Huntsville (Milledgeville, Ga.)
OUTFIELD: REBECCA LEE, Sr., University of Hawai’i-Hilo (Mililani, Hawai’i)
OUTFIELD: MORGAN SPEARMAN, Sr., Angelo State University (Kennedale, Texas)
DESIGNATED PLAYER: LACYE WALKER, Jr., Armstrong Atlantic State (Ooltewah, Tenn.)
UTILITY: JASMINE McNEAL, Jr., Lane College (Los Angeles, Calif.)
UTILITY-PITCHER: CORI REINHARDT, Jr., California State, Monterey Bay (Riverside, Calif.)

THIRD TEAM:
PITCHER: RITA HOKIANGA, Jr., West Texas A&M University (Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand)
PITCHER: JULIA MORROW, Jr., University of Tampa (Baiting Hollow, N.Y.)
PITCHER: VICTORIA SINK, Sr., University of North Georgia (Hoschton, Ga.)
CATCHER: MARY KELLEY, Sr., University of Alabama-Huntsville (Mobile, Ala.)
FIRST BASE: TIFFANY GILLASPY, Jr., Missouri Western State University (Johnston, Iowa)
SECOND BASE: JESSICA SIMMONS, So., Southeastern Oklahoma State University (Bethel, Okla.0
THIRD BASE: CHELSEA RODRIGUEZ, Sr., Fort Lewis College (Mesa, Ariz.)
SHORTSTOP: BRIAUNA TAYLOR, Sr., Grand Valley State University (Livonia, Mich.)
OUTFIELD: MOLLY CHILD, So., Anderson University (LaGrange, Ga.)
OUTFIELD: ALEXIS GONZALEZ, Sr., LIU Post (Hauppauge, N.Y.)
OUTFIELD: CRYSTAL TARANGO, Jr., Dowling College (Fontana, Calif.)
DESIGNATED PLAYER: JESSICA BESTERLING, Sr., Univ. of Colorado-Col. Springs (Glendale, Ariz.)
UTILITY: ALLISON BROWN, Sr., University of Mary (Escondido, Calif.)
UTILITY-PITCHER: JESSICA SEVERINSEN, Sr., Colorado Mesa University (Elizabeth, Colo.)

HONORABLE MENTION:
P: Emily Brittain, St. Mary’s
P: Lindsey Clarkson, Cal State Monterey Bay
P: India Kornegay, South Carolina Aiken
P: Ali Maloof, Southern New Hampshire
P: Liz Weber, LIU Post
C: Kim Jerrick, Midwestern State
C: Natalie Wideman, California (Pa.)
1B: Brianna Butler, Missouri-St. Louis
1B: Anna Shartzer, West Alabama
2B: Andrea Klipsch, Truman State
2B: Micherie Koria, Angelo State
2B: Shelby Lia, California (Pa.)
3B: Jessica Gragg, Emporia State
3B: Julie Pena, Humboldt State
SS: Alyssa Lemos, West Texas A&M
SS: Nicole Nobbe, Cal State San Bernardino
OF: Stephanie Goodwin, Emporia State
OF: Kelli Hensley, Carson-Newman
OF: Megan Konieczka, Sonoma State
OF: Whitney Okvist, Georgia College
OF: Casey Williamson, Indianapolis
DP: Kayla Morrissey, Queens (N.Y.)
DP: Bianca Noriega, Cal State Monterey Bay
DP: Chloe Wolf, North Alabama
UT: Caitlin Brown, UC San Diego
UT: Daja White, Saint Augustine’s
UT-P: Shelby Miller, Southern Arkansas
UT-P: Courtney Poole, North Georgia

PAST AWARD WINNERS

RON LENZ PLAYER OF YEAR
2007: Carmen Paez, Florida Gulf Coast
2008: Heather Ebert, Adams State
2009: Steph Denlinger, Kutztown
2010: Miranda Campbell, Emporia State
2011: Katie Martin, Grand Valley State
2012: Kacie Edwards, Central Oklahoma
2013: Katie Martin, Grand Valley State
2014: Renee Erwin, West Texas A&M

RON LENZ PITCHER OF YEAR
2007: Kristen Erb, Lock Haven
2008: Kristen Erb, Lock Haven
2009: Kristen Erb, Lock Haven
2010: Sarah Phillips, North Georgia
2011: Jessica Coan, North Georgia
2012: Samantha Derr, Kutztown
2013: Kayla Cox, Tampa
2014: Morgan Foley, Indianapolis

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