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Liberty Places 3 on VaSID All-State Softball Team
The Liberty softball team received additional postseason honors on Friday, when three Lady Flames were named to the Virginia Sports Information Directors (VaSID) University Division All-State softball team.
Senior outfielder Meredith Crisante, sophomore outfielder Katie Zavodny and freshman catcher Kelby Allen all received mention on the second team.
Crisante earned all-state honors for the second year in a row, while Zavodny and Allen both appear on the all-state team for the first time. Allen is the first Liberty freshman to be named to the VaSID All-State softball team since Cheryl Wyrick in 2000.
A native of Huntington, W.Va., Crisante was a first team All-Big South selection this season. She batted .295 and led the team with nine home runs, 15 stolen bases, 85 total bases and a .512 slugging percentage. During conference play, she led the Big South with six home runs and 44 total bases. She was tabbed Big South Player of the Week on Feb. 27.
Zavodny, a Concord, N.C., product, was named to the Big South All-Conference second team this year after providing a spark to the Lady Flames' offense. Zavodny led the team with a .351 batting average, .370 on-base percentage and ranked second with 12 stolen bases. Her biggest impact came during conference play, where she hit .417 and scored eight runs in 10 Big South games before sustaining a season-ending injury.
Allen, a freshman from Amarillo, Texas, made an immediate impact this season ranking second on the team with a .306 batting average. She had the highest batting average by a Liberty freshman since Ashley Williams hit .317 in 2005, and tied for the team lead with 13 multiple-hit games. Allen went 3-for-3 during the regular-season finale, hitting two homers and driving in four runs against Longwood.
Radford's Nicholle Beall, two-time Big South Player of the Year, was named VaSID All-State Player of the Year for the first time.
Virginia Tech, the lone team from the Commonwealth to qualify for the 2012 NCAA Division I Softball Championship, received three out of the four major honors. Jasmine Harrell was voted as Pitcher of the Year after posting a 31-16 record, while fellow Hokie Lauren Gaskill was named Rookie of the Year. Virginia Tech head coach Scot Thomas earned his record sixth State Coach of the Year honor, and first since 2008.
2012 VaSID Softball University Division All-State Team
C: Megan Baltzell, Longwood
1B: Courtney Liddle, Virginia Tech *
2B: Erica Cipolloni, Virginia
SS: Nichole Beall, Radford
3B: Kelsey Mericka, Virginia Tech
OF: Lauren Gaskill, Virginia Tech *
OF: Giannina Cipolloni, Virginia
OF: Haley Ward, Norfolk State
U/DP: Sarah Mooney, James Madison
P: Jasmine Harrell, Virginia Tech
P: Melanie Mitchell, Virginia
C: Kelby Allen, Liberty
1B: Haley Johnson, James Madison
2B: Kylie McGoldrick, Virginia Tech
SS: Ashley Burnham, James Madison
3B: Caitlin Sandy, James Madison
OF: Morgan Heath, James Madison
OF: Meredith Crisante, Liberty
OF: Katie Zavodny, Liberty
U/DP: Brooke Short, Longwood
P: Jackie Jenkins, Radford
P: Heather Kiefer, James Madison
Coach of the Year: Scot Thomas, Virginia Tech *
Pitcher of the Year: Jasmine Harrell, Virginia Tech
Player of the Year: Nichole Beall, Radford
Rookie of the Year: Lauren Gaskill, Virginia Tech
* - Denotes Unanimous Selection