Softball team picks up league, national honors
Junior pitcher Stacey Nelson on Wednesday was named one of 10 finalists for the USA Softball National Player of the Year.
The Los Alamitos, Calif., native is the first pitcher in Florida history to be a finalist for the national award.
Also on Wednesday, Nelson was named SEC Pitcher of the Year and coach Tim Walton was named SEC Coach of the Year. Nelson, Ali Gardiner and Kim Waleszonia were all named to the All-SEC first team. Freshman second baseman Aja Paculba was the only Gator named to the All-SEC second team. Stephanie Brombacher, Megan Bush and Tiffany DeFelice were each named to the first-team All-Freshman team.
Nelson leads the Gators with a 38-2 record and a 0.81 ERA, and currently has the most wins of any pitcher in the nation. This season she has set career records for wins, saves, shut outs and strikeouts. Both of Nelson’s losses this season have been by only one run, with only one earned run. She has given up only 30 earned runs on the season and has given up more than two runs only five times this year.
The finalists will be cut to three on May 21, then the three finalists will travel to Oklahoma City for the announcement of the winner of the on May 27.
The other national finalists are:
Katie Burkhart (Arizona State); Tonya Callahan (Tennessee); Kaitlin Cochran (Arizona State); Megan Gibson (Texas A&M); Charlotte Morgan (Alabama); Angel Shamblin (Houston); Jordan Taylor (Michigan);
Angela Tincher (Virginia Tech) and Tammy Williams (Northwestern).