April 19, 2011
Center Valley, Pa. – The Patriot League announced its weekly softball awards Tuesday. The announcement was delayed a day because of the postponement of an Army-Lafayette doubleheader in Easton, Pa., to Monday because of inclement weather over the weekend.
Colgate has gotten to the top of the Patriot League standings thanks to its pitching, but over the weekend it was the offense that propelled the Raiders as they took two of three from visiting Lehigh. Colgate scored 21 runs against the Mountain Hawks, with sophomore Natalie Siedhof driving in seven to lead her to this week’s Player of the Week nod.
Bucknell sophomore Alex MacLean went 2-1 last week, including a win during the weekend split at Holy Cross. It could have been 3-0, as MacLean held the Crusaders to just two runs in her complete-game effort Sunday before taking the hard-luck loss.
Army freshman Amanda Nguyen continued to set the table for the Black Knights, as she hit .688 with a .722 on-base percentage while slugging .750 with four RBI to lead Army to a 3-2 week, including a 3-1 record against League opponent Lafayette.
Non-League action resumes Wednesday with four doubleheaders. Lehigh hosts Hofstra, Lafayette entertains Saint Peter’s and Colgate heads to Cornell, all starting at 3 p.m. At 4 p.m., Army welcomes Delaware for a twinbill at West Point.
Patriot League Softball Weekly Awards (4.11-4.18)
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
NATALIE SIEDHOF, COLGATE So., 2B, Canton, Pa.
Siedhof erupted at the plate last week and was a key contributor for the Raiders as they took two out of three games from Lehigh to take a two-game lead atop the Patriot League standings. She finished the week going 11-for-17 (.647) at the plate with three home runs and 10 RBI and four runs scored. She started the week going 4-for-7 with a two home runs and three driven in as Colgate dropped two at Binghamton Thursday. In the three games over the weekend against Lehigh, she hit .700 (7-for-10) with a home run and seven RBI. In Sunday’s first game, she went 2-for-4 at the dish with a grand slam, helping the Raiders to a 13-7 victory. Siedhof has a six-game hitting streak, and has moved up to third on the team with 19 RBI.
PITCHER OF THE WEEK
ALEX MacLEAN, BUCKNELL So., P, Northampton, Pa.
MacLean posted a 2-1 record in three complete games last week with a 2.67 ERA and 15 strikeouts. She went the distance in the Bison’s 6-5 victory Wednesday against Saint Francis (Pa.), helping her team secure a doubleheader split against the Red Flash. She hurled two complete games in the four-game weekend set at Holy Cross, picking up the 4-3 win on Saturday when she allowed six hits and walked three while striking out six. She tossed seven innings on Sunday as well, allowing two runs (one earned) on six hits while walking three and striking out another six in a 2-0 hard-luck loss. She has 92 strikeouts this season, which ties her career high from last season and puts her into a tie for eighth on Bucknell’s single-season list. She is now fifth all-time at the school with 184.
ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
AMANDA NGUYEN, ARMY Fr., LF, Houston, Texas
Nguyen was red hot last week for the Black Knights, collecting hits in all five of her team’s games, with three multiple-hit efforts. She finished the week going 11-for-16 (.688) at the plate with four RBI, five runs scored and a pair of walks. She went a perfect 4-for-4 as Army opened its series at Lafayette with a 14-6 win in five innings. In the 6-4 win in the nightcap, she singled home the first two runs and then scored in a six-run fifth inning as Army erased a 1-0 deficit. In Monday’s opener, she went 3-for-3 at the plate with a pair of RBI, driving in her first in the first inning to cap off a six-run explosion and adding another in the third inning when the Black Knights scored eight times. Nguyen has hit safely in each of Army’s last six League contests and in 10 of the 12 tilts this season.
JULIE FERNANDEZ, LEHIGH Jr., 1B, Moorpark, Calif.
Fernandez hit .588 (10-for-17) last week with a pair of home runs, 10 RBI, three doubles and a triple. She went 6-for-11 at the plate in the Colgate series, hitting both of her round trippers against the Raiders and driving in six. She raised her batting average to .352 on the season and is riding an eight-game hitting streak.
ALISON FORD, BUCKNELL Sr., 3B/1B, Suisun City, Calif.
Ford led the Bison hitting .571 last week. She went 3-for-3 in the first game of the Holy Cross series with a grand slam and a career-high seven RBI as the Bison won 14-6 in five innings. It was her first grand slam against a League opponent and the second of her career. Ford has hit safely in 21 of her last 23 games.
CAITLIN BELANGER, HOLY CROSS Sr., OF/P, Fall River, Mass.
Belanger hit .476 last week, including .500 with a home run, four RBI and a pair of steals during the four-game split with visiting Bucknell over the weekend. She also went 1-2 in the circle with a save. She went 1.1 innings of two-hit ball to cap off Holy Cross’ 4-2 win over the Bison in Sunday’s first game, then tossed a complete-game seven-hit shutout in game two.
MELISSA ROBINSON, LAFAYETTE Fr., P, Philadelphia, Pa.
Robinson pitched a total of 13.2 innings in the four-game set against visiting Army, including a complete-game three-hit gem Monday as the Leopards picked up their first League win of the season, 2-0. She pitched to a 1.02 ERA in her two appearances against the Black Knights, allowing seven hits and striking out five.