Monica Abbott pitches combined no-hitter

Former Lady Vol Monica Abbott pitches combined no-hitter.

Former Lady Vol Monica Abbott combined with two other players to pitch a no-hitter for Team USA.

Team USA defeated Aussie Spirit, 4-0, in an exhibition at Columbus, Georgia.

Abbott combined with Ally Carda and Megren Faraimo in the no-hitter.

The former Lady Vol started and earned a victory. She pitched three innings, surrendering one walk and recording seven strikeouts against 10 batters (44 pitches, 31 strikes).

Carda and Faraimo each pitched two innings.

Abbott competed for Team USA in the 2020 Olympics, winning a silver medal as the sport returned after a 12-year hiatus.

Abbott and Team USA won a silver medal in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

She played for Tennessee from 2004-07 and is one of the most decorated players in program history.

With the Lady Vols, the Salinas, California native compiled 189 victories and 2,440 strikeouts. Abbott holds career records in innings pitched (1,448.0), appearances (253) and shutouts (112).

Abbott was Tennessee’s first All-American in softball.

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Monica Abbott pitches scoreless inning for Team USA

Former Lady Vol Monica Abbott pitches scoreless inning for Team USA.

Former Tennessee pitcher Monica Abbott pitched one inning of scoreless relief for Team USA in its 3-0 exhibition victory against Japan Monday in Columbus, Georgia.

Abbott combined with Ally Carda and Megran Faraimo for a one-hitter. The former Lady Vol totaled 17 pitches, including 10 strikes.

Abbott competed for Team USA in the 2020 Olympics, winning a silver medal as the sport returned after a 12-year Olympic hiatus.

Abbott and Team USA won a silver medal in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

She played for the Lady Vols from 2004-07 and is one of the most decorated players in program history.

At Tennessee, the Salinas, California native, compiled 189 career victories and 2,440 strikeouts. Abbott holds NCAA career records for innings pitched (1,448.0), appearances (253) and shutouts (112).

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NFCA 2022 All-Region Awards

175 student-athletes recognized as 2022 spring All-Region nominees

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The National Fastpitch Coaches Association has announced 175 student-athletes have received 2022 NFCA High School Spring All-Region accolades.

The awards honor softball student-athletes from eight (Regions III through X) of the Association’s 10 regions with first- and second-team selections. NFCA member head coaches from each respective region voted on the teams. Additionally, in some instances, limited regional nominations prevented a position from being filled.

All student-athletes, including the 2021 Summer/Fall honorees (announced Nov. 12, 2021), now become eligible for the 2022 NFCA High School All-America squads, which will be announced on July 13.

* Please note Summer/Fall teams (announced Nov. 12, 2021) are listed first)

New for the 2021-22 academic year, the Association realigned the high school membership into 10 regions from the original five due in part to the growth of the group’s membership. You can find the regional breakdown HERE.

Lake Creek High School (Texas) out of Region VI topped the charts with five first-team All-Region selections. The Lions (41-0) finished 2022 as the No. 1 team in the USA Today Sports/NFCA High School Super 25.

Oaks Christian High School (Calif.) from Region IV, Allen Park High School (Mich.) and Barrington High School (Ill.) representing Region V, Lakota West High School (Ohio) out of Region VIII and Region IX’s Immaculate Heart Academy (N.J.) and Mount St. Dominic Academy (N.J.) each had four plaudits. All four student-athletes from IHA earned first-team recognition with Lakota West and Mount St. Dominic having two first teamers apiece.

Five more programs – Region III’s Eagle High School (Idaho) and Logan High School (Utah), Region IV’s Sheldon High School (Calif.), Region VI’s The Woodlands High School (Texas), and Region IX’s Donovan Catholic High School (N.J.) – each received three nods. Eagle, Logan, Sheldon and Donovan Catholic each captured two first-team accolades.

Eight schools in Region VII earned multiple All-Region honors with Hatton High School (Ala.) and Lakewood Ranch High School (Fla.) collecting two first-team accolades apiece. Cushing Academy (Mass.) out of Region X posted a pair of first-team selections as well.

NFCA High School All-Region and All-America student-athletes must be nominated by their NFCA-member head coach. All-Region is voted on by their respective region’s member head coaches, and All-Americans are voted on by the entire high school membership.

Check out the 2021-22 High School All-Region teams below.

Former Alabama softball pitcher announces transfer to Oklahoma State

Former Alabama softball pitcher Lexi Kilfoyl has announced that she is transferring to Oklahoma State.

On Thursday, former Alabama softball pitcher Lexi Kilfoyl announced that she was transferring to Oklahoma State via Twitter. The news comes a couple of days after former Alabama infielder Megan Bloodworth announced her commitment to the Cowboys as well.

Kilfoyl joined the softball team in 2020 as a freshman. The Florida native would appear in 13 games in a season that was shortened by COVID-19. In eight starts, she maintained a 6-4 record with a 2.42 ERA. Then, in 2021, she would appear in 32 games with 27 of those games being as the starting pitcher. She was named to the All-SEC Newcomer Team after a stellar season, to say the least. Kilfoyl dominated on the mound with a 13-4 record with a 1.62 ERA.

This past season, she pitched in 18 games with 13 as a starter. In the games that she pitched, she maintained a solid 2.36 ERA with a 9-3 record on the year. It wasn’t the ideal scenario for Kilfoyl to be in Tuscaloosa for yet another year with ace pitcher Montana Fouts returning for a fifth season. With an increased opportunity to play elsewhere, Kilfoyl entered her name into the transfer portal.

Now, she will be taking her talents to Stillwater to play for a Cowboys squad that is fresh off a College World Series appearance this past season. Since the end of the season, Patrick Murphy has lost five players already via the transfer portal. Several of the players that have announced transfers are Savannah Woodard (Liberty), Jenna Lord (Ole Miss), Dallis Goodnight (Georgia), Megan Bloodworth (Oklahoma State), and now Lexi Kilfoyl (Oklahoma State).

Roll Tide Wire will continue to cover Crimson Tide softball and other Alabama athletics.

Final 2022 USA TODAY Sports/NFCA High School Super 25 softball rankings

Lake Creek finishes No. 1 in USA TODAY Sports/NFCA High School Super 25.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Unbeaten Texas state 5A titlist Lake Creek is No. 1 in the final USA TODAY Sports/NFCA High School Super 25 of the 2022 season.

In all, unbeaten teams comprise half of the top 10 teams, including five of the first seven. The (41-0) Lions lead the way with their 15th week in the top spot, followed by Indiana titlist Roncalli (33-0) at No. 2 and Arkansas state champ Benton (32-0) in the third spot.

No. 6 Rockridge (35-0) and seventh-ranked Monroe-Woodbury (26-0) are the other two teams in the poll who did not lose a game this season. Rockridge is the first Illinois team to have back-to-back unbeaten seasons, while the Crusaders rode senior pitcher Brianna Roberts to New York’s Class AA title.

Utah’s Riverton (28-1) and Ohio’s Anthony Wayne (30-1) had just one blemish on their record in the fourth and fifth positions, respectively, while No. 8 Donovan Catholic (30-1) suffered its lone loss to fellow state titlist Haddon Heights in New Jersey’s Tournament of Champions. The Griffins had just won a third-straight state Non-Public A crown and were riding a 48-game win streak at the time.

Ninth-ranked Lakewood Ranch (30-2) avenged two early losses to Lake Brantley with a 8-2 victory over the Patriots in the Florida state Class 7A championship, and No. 10 Oaks Christian (34-1) closed the year with three California playoff triumphs after a mid-May loss to Los Alamitos snapped the Lions’ 31-game win streak.

State rankings submitted by the 2022 NFCA High School Steering Committee are used to compile the USA TODAY Sports/NFCA High School Super 25. Teams are chosen based on performance, roster quality, strength of schedule, and active NFCA membership.

USA TODAY Sports/NFCA High School Super 25 Poll – June 30, 2022

1. Lake Creek (Texas)

Record: 41-0 | Previous Rank: 1

2. Roncalli (Ind.)

Record: 33-0 | Previous Rank: 2

3. Benton (Ark.)

Record: 32-0 | Previous Rank: 3

4. Riverton (Utah)

Record: 28-1 | Previous Rank: 4

5. Anthony Wayne (Ohio)

Record: 30-1 | Previous Rank: 5

6. Rockridge (Ill.)

Record: 35-0 | Previous Rank: 6

7. Monroe-Woodbury (N.Y.)

Record: 26-0 | Previous Rank: 7

8. Donovan Catholic (N.J.)

Record: 30-1 | Previous Rank: 8

9. Lakewood Ranch (Fla.)

Record: 30-2 | Previous Rank: 9

10. Oaks Christian (Calif.)

Record: 34-1 | Previous Rank: 10

11. Neshoba Central (Miss.)

Record: 31-3 | Previous Rank: 11

12. Clovis North (Calif.)

Record: 21-3 | Previous Rank: 12

13. North Augusta (S.C.)

Record: 33-2 | Previous Rank: 13

14. Eastern Alamance (N.C.)

Record: 28-2 | Previous Rank: 14

15. Patterson Mill (Md.)

Record: 21-1 | Previous Rank: 15

16. Immaculate Heart Academy (N.J.)

Record: 27-2 | Previous Rank: 16

17. Concord (N.H.)

Record: 26-2 | Previous Rank: 17

18. Lakota West (Ohio)

Record: 29-3 | Previous Rank: 18

19. Watkins Memorial (Ohio)

Record: 28-3 | Previous Rank: 19

20. Alexander Central (N.C.)

Record: 25-3 | Previous Rank: 20

21. Lexington (S.C.)

Record: 27-4 | Previous Rank: 21

22. New Palestine (Ind.)

Record: 23-4-1 | Previous Rank: 22

23. John Curtis (La.)

Record: 29-3 | Previous Rank: 23

24. Diamond (Mo.)

Record: 29-3 | Previous Rank: 24

25. Rosemount (Minn.)

Record: 21-4 | Previous Rank: 25

Dropped out:  

None.

About the NFCA:

The NFCA (National Fastpitch Coaches Association) is the professional organization for fastpitch softball coaches. Known for its highly-regarded coaches polls and All-America awards, the NFCA also educates and supports softball coaches on a variety of different levels: from podcasts to awards, to in-person events and National Convention.

Aggies’ softball All-American Haley Lee enters transfer portal

Aggies’ softball All-American Haley Lee enters transfer portal

Per confirmed sources at Extra Inning Softball, Aggies’ All-American catcher, Haley Lee, has entered the NCAA’s transfer portal. With one year of eligibility remaining in 2023 – and no graduate transfer distinction, Lee’s final collegiate season will no longer be taking place in College Station.

Lee’s breakout season took place in 2021, as a true junior, in which a .297 career batting average exploded to .422 after starting all 55 games for the Aggies. Lee went on to hit 25 HRs, 51 RBIs, scored 42 runs, earned 36 walks, had a .955 slugging percentage and a .536 on-base percentage en route to NFCA Third Team All-America honors, as well as earning Softball America’s NCAA Most Improved Player.

Lee’s 2021 was no fluke as she followed suit in her most recent 2022 campaign. Lee started all 59 games and posted hitting statistics that included a .405 batting average, 15 HRs, 45 RBIs, 15 doubles, 54 runs, earned 50 walks, a slugging percentage of .762 and an on-base percentage of .543 en route to an All-SEC First Team selection.

Whether this development took place because of the recent parting between Texas A&M and Hall of Fame former head coach, Jo Evans, or not, newly hired head coach, Trisha Ford, will need to work tirelessly to replace Lee’s experience and production in 2023.

All-American Texas A&M catcher Haley Lee enters the transfer portal

Looking to reload for the 2023 season, should the Sooners target Texas A&M catcher Haley Lee, who recently entered the transfer portal?

The Oklahoma Sooners softball team has already made a couple of splashes in the 2022 transfer portal as they reload for the 2023 season. They’ve added former Michigan pitcher [autotag]Alex Storako[/autotag] and shortstop [autotag]Alynah Torres[/autotag] from Arizona State.

Storako will fill the void felt by the departure of [autotag]Hope Trautwein[/autotag] while it’s likely Torres moves from shortstop to third base with reigning defensive player of the year [autotag]Grace Lyons[/autotag] expected to return to OU.

Those additions will be impact players for the Oklahoma Sooners, but why stop there? Oklahoma could add another player to their ranks and one that could help fill the void left by the departed home run queen, [autotag]Jocelyn Alo[/autotag]. And that player is [autotag]Haley Lee[/autotag] from Texas A&M.

According to Extra Inning Softball, Lee has entered her name into the transfer portal.

Lee, a 2022 second-team All-American, led the Aggies in batting average, home runs, and RBIs in 2022, hitting .405 with 15 home runs and 45 RBIs. She also added 50 walks to her ledger, displaying discipline at the plate. She helped the Aggies reach the regional round of the NCAA tournament.

In the first regional matchup between Oklahoma and Texas A&M, Trautwein was dealing as the Sooners led 3-0. Things got a little tighter with one swing of the bat as Lee launched a two-run home run to cut the lead to one in the sixth inning. Oklahoma won the game, but Lee made her presence felt with the two-run bomb.

Lee plays catcher for Texas A&M but could also slide into the designated player role departed by Jocelyn Alo. Kinzie Hansen returns for the Sooners at catcher, but Patty Gasso platooned her and Lynnsie Elam in that role in 2022.

Haley Lee is a player to watch in the transfer portal and with her credentials could land anywhere in the country. You can never have too much hitting in your lineup and Lee would bring another formidable bat to the Sooners.

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2022 Women’s College World Series final does better ratings than CWS counterpart

With the Women’s College World Series coming out ahead, both the WCWS and the College World Series saw huge ratings in 2022

Both college softball and college baseball are considered growing entities, but, as of now, one appears to be ahead of the other, and it might not be what you think.

Both the Women’s College World Series and College World Series were broadcast on ESPN. The WCWS produced both a higher peak viewership and a higher average viewership. The WCWS accomplished this while having lower ratings than in 2021.

How streaming figures into this is a bit of a question mark. These are only cable numbers. When including cord-cutters, the numbers are going to be much higher.

This is a very good thing for the future of sports for women’s athletics and college sports in general.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CfZBpdfO1vI/

I’m just going to put this out there: The tournament that had the Oklahoma Sooners win yet another national championship had better ratings. I’m just saying.

After a bit of a down year in 2021, the CWS’ ratings were up 19% to get back to pre-pandemic numbers.

This is definitely something to keep an eye on in the future. Both baseball and softball are going to be getting more interesting at the collegiate level very soon.

More and more high school baseball players are opting to go to college with the MLB draft still shortened following the COVID-19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, in softball, Women’s Professional Fastpitch, a professional softball league is in its first season. The WPF has multiple former Sooners in its ranks, including Collegiate Player of the Year Jocelyn Alo and WCWS Star Hope Trautwein.

ESPN put both the CWS and WCWS on their streaming service ESPN+, making it even easier to follow college sports than ever.

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Clemson softball to play host to ACC-Big Ten Challenge

Clemson will serve as one of four hosts for the ACC-Big Ten Softball Challenge in 2023. The ACC on Tuesday announced the host sites for next year’s event, which is returning for the first time since 2020. Notre Dame as well as Big Ten programs Ohio …

Clemson will serve as one of four hosts for the ACC-Big Ten Softball Challenge in 2023.

The ACC on Tuesday announced the host sites for next year’s event, which is returning for the first time since 2020. Notre Dame as well as Big Ten programs Ohio State and Northwestern will make the trip to Clemson next spring with each team playing four games as part of the challenge.

Georgia Tech, North Carolina and North Carolina State will also serve as hosts. All games will be played Feb. 16-19. Exact game dates and times will be announced at a later date.

Results from the TaxAct Clearwater Invitational, which will include six teams from the ACC and Big Ten, will also count toward the challenge standings. The ACC, which won the most recent challenge in 2020, holds a 3-2 lead through the first five years of the event.

Clemson, fresh off its first-ever super-regional appearance, just completed its third season as a program.

Giulia Koutsoyanopulos signs with Tennessee

Giulia Koutsoyanopulos signs with Tennessee.

The Lady Vols have added Arizona transfer Giulia Koutsoyanopulos.

Koutsoyanopulos competed for Italy in the 2020 Olympics.

She played at Arizona for two seasons and will have two years of eligibility remaining.

Koutsoyanopulos has appeared in 102 games, starting 27 contests, as a sophomore in the outfield for Arizona. She has recorded a career .280 batting average, totaling 21 hits and 35 runs.

Tennessee head coach Karen Weekly said Koutsoyanopulos brings a passion for the game to the Lady Vols.

“Giulia has an intensity and competitive fire that bring the term ‘old school’ to mind,” Weekly said. “She just loves to play softball. Her drive to compete and get better is off the charts. I look forward to coaching her.”

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