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Amber Bishop Named VaSID State Softball Rookie of the Year
Liberty freshman second baseman Amber Bishop was named the 2017 Virginia Sports Information Directors (VaSID) University Division Softball Rookie of the Year, highlighting seven All-State honors the Lady Flames received today.
Liberty placed a program-record six players on the VaSID University Division All-State Softball Team, breaking the previous mark of five set in 1997. The Lady Flames received four players on the first team and two on the second team.
Amber Bishop was joined on the first team by freshman utility player Autumn Bishop, junior outfielder Tori Zavodny and sophomore pitcher Julia DiMartino. Sophomore shortstop Sarah Robertson and redshirt senior pitcher Kenzie Friesen were named to the second team.
Amber Bishop is the first Liberty player to be named VaSID University Division Softball Rookie of the Year. She and her sister, Autumn, are the fourth and fifth freshmen in program history to make the All-State team. A two-time All-State selection, DiMartino is the first Liberty pitcher to earn All-State mention as both a freshman and a sophomore. Zavodny receives her second All-State award, also being named to the second team in 2015.
A native of Murrieta, Calif., 2017 Big South Freshman of the Year Amber Bishop was also named to the NFCA All-Mid-Atlantic Region third team. In addition to first-team all-conference honors, she was a Top 25 Finalist for the 2017 Schutt Sports/NFCA National Freshman of the Year. A .373 hitter, Bishop set new program freshman records in hits (85), runs scored (55), home runs (15) and RBI (66), with her RBI total serving as a new single-season program record. She finished the year ranked seventh in the nation in total bases (141), eighth in hits and 12th in RBI.
Autumn Bishop is the lone player on Liberty's 2017 team to be named to both the Big South All-Conference first team and NFCA All-Mid-Atlantic Region first team. A native of Murrieta, Calif., Autumn Bishop was a three-time Big South Freshman of the Week. She didn't miss a beat, despite missing a month with an injury. She batted .481 in 10 conference games, and finished with a .381 overall average. Bishop tied for fourth in the Big South for triples (3), tied for fourth in doubles (15) and tied for fifth in runs scored (41).
Hailing from Brockport, N.Y., 2017 Big South Pitcher of the Year and two-time first team all-conference selection, DiMartino posted a 22-10 record with a 1.91 ERA, seven shutouts and 175 strikeouts. DiMartino also earned NFCA All-Mid-Atlantic Region second-team honors and All-ECAC second-team mention. Her 22 wins tied a program single-season record, set by Leslie Inge in 2000. She pitched 48 consecutive scoreless innings during April, going over two weeks without allowing a single run. DiMartino led the Big South in ERA, shutouts and strikeouts, while ranking 48th in the nation in total strikeouts.
A Concord, N.C., native, Zavodny, a three-time all-conference outfielder, had her best year yet, earning NFCA All-Mid-Atlantic Region second-team honors. She finished the season ranked second in the Big South in both runs scored (50) and hits (74), third in average (.381) fourth in on-base percentage (.440) and total bases (105), tied for fourth in triples (3) and fifth in total bases (91). Zavodny reached base safely in each of the last 17 games of the regular season. She was named NISC Tournament MVP, batting .400 with one homer and eight RBI during the Championship Round.
A native of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, Friesen made the most of her final season at Liberty. She posted a 15-3 record with a 2.16 ERA, four shutouts and a Big South-leading .224 opponents' batting average. Her .833 winning percentage led all Big South pitchers, while her ERA was second. Friesen, a Big South All-Conference second team pitcher, was named 2017 Big South Scholar-Athlete of the Year. She also earned a spot on the CoSIDA Academic All-District Team. She was named to the NISC All-Tournament Team, going 4-0 with a 1.14 ERA at the event.
Hailing from Panama City, Fla., Robertson had a standout sophomore season on the left side of the infield. Robertson was named to the Big South All-Conference second team. She batted .313 with a team-leading 16 doubles while finishing second on the team with 42 RBI. Robertson's 13-game hitting streak in March was the longest by a Lady Flame this season. She finished the season tied for second in the Big South in doubles while ranking fourth in both hits (68) and RBI (42). Robertson recorded 21 multiple-hit games, including four three-hit contests.
No. 18/18 James Madison received three major awards after a 52-8 season that saw the Dukes win the CAA title and compete in the Waco Regional final. James Madison junior Megan Good was named both VaSID State Pitcher of the Year and Player of the Year. An NFCA All-America first-team selection, Good receives VaSID Pitcher of the Year honors for the third year in a row. Last week, Good was named the Schutt Sports/NFCA Division I National Player of the Year. Dukes' Head Coach Mickey Dean was named VaSID Coach of the Year for the fifth season in a row and seventh time in his career.
2017 VaSID All-State University Division Softball Team
C – Katie Park, Sr., Virginia
1B – Morgan Tolle, Jr., James Madison
2B – Amber Bishop, Fr., Liberty
SS – Niki Prince, Sr., James Madison
3B – Madyson Moran, Sr., James Madison
OF – Cambry Arnold, Fr., James Madison
OF – Taylor Newton, Sr., James Madison
OF – Tori Zavodny, Jr., Liberty
UT/DP – Autumn Bishop, Fr., Liberty
P – Julia DiMartino, So., Liberty
P - Megan Good, Jr., James Madison
P – Marina Vitalich, So., George Mason
C – Kierstin Roadcap, Fr., James Madison
1B – Danni Ingraham, Jr., Virginia
2B – Madison Naujokas, Fr., James Madison
SS – Sarah Robertson, So., Liberty
3B – Hunter Mundy, Fr., Radford
OF – Allison Davis, Jr., Virginia
OF – Emma Strouth, So., Virginia Tech
OF – Taylor Warrick, Fr., Hampton
UT/DP – Breanna Davenport, Jr., Virginia Tech
P – Odicci Alexander, Fr., James Madison
P – Kenzie Friesen, R-Sr., Liberty
P – Elizabeth McCarthy, Sr., Longwood
VaSID Player of the Year – Megan Good, Jr., James Madison
VaSID Pitcher of the Year – Megan Good, Jr., James Madison
VaSID Coach of the Year - Mickey Dean, James Madison
VaSID Rookie of the Year – Amber Bishop, Liberty