Sortino, Three Minutewomen Among ECAC All-Star Honorees
June 28, 2012
CENTERVILLE, Mass. - The Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) announced its 2012 Division I Softball All-Star Team which included three Massachusetts standouts and head coach Elaine Sortino.
Receiving individual awards were Sortino as the ECAC Coach of the Year, UMass teammates Sara Plourde and Quianna Diaz-Patterson are the ECAC Pitcher and Rookie of the Year, respectively, and Lehigh University's Jennifer Colquhon is the ECAC Player of the Year.
UMass leftfielder Cyndil Matthew was also named to the first team, along with Plourde.
Plourde, an Easton All-America Second Team member, became the first player in Atlantic-10 Conference history to win both the A-10 Player and Pitcher of the Year awards in the same season. This year's honor was her third pitcher of the year award. The eight-time A-10 pitcher of the week award winner also was named the Louisville Slugger Division I National Player of the Week twice. Plourde finished the season 36-11, compiling a 1.74 earned-run average over 309.1 innings pitched. With her 541 strikeouts this season, she entrenched herself not only in the UMass record book but also in NCAA Division I annals. Her 1,662 career strikeouts ranks eighth all-time and her single-season total - which led the NCAA - are the 11th highest total in Division I history.
The A-10 Rookie of the Year, Diaz-Patterson ended her impressive freshman campaign by finishing second on the team in batting average (.327), second in hits (56) and runs (35), and led the team in RBIs (41) and doubles (14). The shortstop played a pivotal role in the team's 19-0 regular-season league record, which culminated with A-10 regular-season and tournament championships.
Matthew posted her best year in 2012 as she established season-highs in every offensive category. She led the Atlantic 10 and ranked 37th nationally with a .409 batting average. She also ranked among the nation's leaders in steals (seventh with a school-record 36), triples (seventh with six) and runs per game (20th). An Easton All-America selection earlier this month, she reached base in 49 of 51 games as the team's primary leadoff hitter, including the final 27 contests.
Sortino helped the Minutewoman win their 23rd A-10 Tournament crown and road a 22-game winning streak into the NCAA tournament. Now in her 33rd year with the program, she has earned the A-10 coach of the year award 11 times. She boasts a career record of 1,157-483-6 and ranks fourth in victories among active NCAA Division I coaches.
This marks the fourth time in the past five years a UMass player has collected Pitcher of the Year accolades and the second time since 2008 for a Rookie of the Year award to be headed to Amherst.
The ECAC All-Stars were selected from first team all-conference players and league award winners from the America East, A-10, Atlantic Coast (ACC), Big East, Big South, Colonial Athletic Association (CAA), Ivy League, Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC), Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC), Northeast Conference and the Patriot League.
2012 ECAC Division I Softball All-Stars
Player of the Year
Pitcher of the Year
Rookie of the Year
Coach of the Year:
Catcher: Kacee Cox, Sr., St. John's (Big East Conference)
Catcher: Lauren Liseth, So., Fairfield (Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference)