Fri, May. 4, 2012 - [Softball]
Khyia Lewis is WPU's fourth MCC Player of the Year in its history
Oskaloosa--After a dominating regular season, it is only fitting that the William Penn softball team would also dominate postseason recognition as the all-Midwest Collegiate Conference softball teams were announced today.
Lady Statesmen right fielder Khyia Lewis (Sr., Ottumwa, Ottumwa HS) was named MCC Player of the Year, while southpaw Jennifer Whitehead (So., Oskaloosa, Oskaloosa HS) was picked as the conference's Pitcher of the Year. Skipper Mike Christner also collected MCC Coach of the Year honors as the Lady Statesmen finished the regular season at 40-15 (now 42-15), including a 21-3 mark in the league.
Five other members of the navy and gold squad earned laurels as well. First baseman Brianne Rowley (Sr., Hood River, Ore., Blue Mountain CC), second baseman Molly Miller (Jr., Kalona, Mid-Prairie HS), and shortstop Ashley Stream (Sr., Chariton, Chariton HS) joined Lewis and Whitehead on the first team, while center fielder Ashlee Dennis (Fr., Loveland, Colo., Mountain View HS) and third baseman KC Routos (Jr., Newcastle, Wash., Pierce CC) were selected for the honorable-mention team.
A total of 18 players were named to the first team, while an additional 20 collected honorable mentions.
Lewis is the program's fourth Player of the Year since joining the MCC in 2002, while Whitehead, now a two-time top hurler, is William Penn's fifth MCC POY. Christner's COY honor is the fifth of his career.
Entering this weekend's MCC Final Four Tournament, William Penn's right fielder is hitting a team-best .367 with 16 home runs, 56 RBIs, and 53 runs scored. The two-time league Player of the Week was a near-unanimous pick for POY as she leads the MCC in RBIs, total bases (131), walks (29), slugging percentage (.789), on-base percentage (.462), and doubles (16). Lewis is also tied with Rowley for home runs and runs.
Like several of her teammates, Lewis really stepped up in league play, hitting .414 with eight home runs and a .929 slugging percentage and a .518 on-base clip. She had an 11-game hitting streak earlier this year. The first-team laurel is the second of her career.
Whitehead, a four-time Player of the Week, is currently 21-9 with a 1.34 Earned Run Average. In 193 2/3 innings, she has struck out 171 batters against 52 walks, while opponents are hitting just .205 versus the sophomore. Whitehead's 31 appearances (29 starts) have garnered 28 complete games and ten shutouts.
The sophomore, who started 1-5, tops all MCC hurlers in wins, innings pitched, games started, shutouts, complete games, and opponent batting average. She ranks in the top five in strikeouts and appearances as well.
The southpaw dominated MCC competition, going 12-2 with a 0.92 ERA and seven shutouts. League players owned a meager .164 batting average against Whitehead.
Rowley, now a two-time first-teamer, highlighted William Penn's individual accomplishments as she was named NAIA Player of the Week back in April. The senior is hitting .345 with 16 home runs, 49 RBIs, and 53 runs scored. She cleared the fence ten times in conference action and owned a ten-game hitting streak this year.
Miller has a .352 batting clip with 23 RBIs and 40 runs scored. The two-time first-team pick has posted a conference-best 63 hits this year. She produced a squad-best 12-game hitting streak at the start of the campaign.
A three-time award recipient (second time on first team), Stream is hitting .328 with three home runs, 43 RBIs, and 31 runs scored. She is tied for the MCC lead with five triples and is guiding the Lady Statesmen with seven sacrifice hits.
Dennis, who stepped up into the lead-off role in her freshman season, holds a .331 batting average with nine RBIs and 26 runs scored. She recorded a six-game hitting streak earlier this spring and led all William Penn players with five stolen bases.
Routos has a .315 clip at the plate with one home run, 29 RBIs, and 15 runs scored. The junior managed an 11-game hitting streak in 2012. Dennis and Routos are both first-time league selections.
For the complete 2012 all-MCC Softball teams, click here