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May 9, 2003

Retriever Third Baseman Kristie Pickeral Named NEC Softball Player of the Year

UMBC third baseman Kristie Pickeral, last year's NEC Rookie of the Year, was voted by league head coaches as the 2003 NEC Player of the Year.

After being named NEC Rookie of the Year in 2002, Pickeral didn't waste any time in making the jump to NEC Player of the Year in 2003. The sophomore standout was dominant in league play, batting .507 with 17 runs, 37 hits, five doubles, seven home runs, 32 runs batted in and a .863 slugging percentage, while also posting a .977 fielding percentage from her post at third base. On the season, Pickeral topped the NEC in hits (74) and RBIs (56), ranks third in batting average (.396) and home runs (11) and is tied for fourth in runs scored (33).

In addition to Piceral, the all-conference first team includes her Retriever teammate, junior outfielder Lauren Hebb. In her first year at UMBC, Hebb is currently batting .382 overall and .400 in NEC action, while leading the league in runs scored (59), home runs (15) and total bases (125). She also ranks second in the conference in hits (65) and runs batted in (50).

The Northeast Conference second team includes four Retrievers. Senior shortstop Lisa Boone -- a four-time all-conference selection -- making her first appearance on the postseason team at an infield position. She was named all-NEC first team the last two years and all-NEC second team during her rookie campaign, all in the outfield. Boone is batting .332 and currently ranks third in the league in hits (63) and runs scored (38), while also tallying 12 doubles, three triples, two home runs and 24 RBI on the year.

Senior outfielder Abbie Kahn, junior utility player Sarah Crowell and freshman pitcher Lauren Nicholson all make their first appearance on the all-conference team. Kahn is hitting .318 overall and .356 in league play, while recording 24 runs, 57 hits, 14 doubles, two home runs and 34 runs batted in. Crowell is batting at a .324 clip with 23 runs, 45 hits, three doubles, one home run and 19 runs batted in. Nicholson was dominant in NEC action from the mound, going 10-0 with a 2.16 ERA and 18-7 overall with a 2.13 ERA.

Posted by dwinds1 at May 9, 2003 12:00 AM