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Northwest Bearcats

Press Release

May 7, 2004

Spring Named First-Team All-Region

Courtesy of Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- A total of 12 players from seven MIAA schools were selected to the Division II All-North Central Region Team sponsored by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association and voted on by members in the region.

Six of the honorees made the first-team, including a pair from regional tournament participant Truman State University. Two-time NFCA Division II All-America, senior SS Elizabeth Economon, moved a step closer to making it three in a row with her selection. She has broken MIAA career records for hits (272), runs scored (186), RBI (193), home runs (50) and bases on balls (132) entering this weekend's action.

Her Truman teammate, sophomore INF/RHP Loni Wedemeier, was selected as the first-team utility player. Wedemeier split time between pitching, second base and third base, hitting .352 with seven homers and 37 RBI, while going 17-5 in the circle with a 1.46 ERA.

The duo of hurlers who combined for an NCAA Division II record 42 strikeouts in one game -- Missouri-Rolla senior RHP Christy Deken and Emporia State sophomore RHP Melissa Stevens -- also were selected.

Deken's outstanding season for the Lady Miners included a a 27-2 record, a 0.48 earned run average and 346 strikeouts in 218 2/3 innings pitched -- an average of 11.08 per seven innings that currently ranks fourth in the NCAA Division II ranks. She had a NCAA Division II record-tying 23 Ks against ESU on April 27, and was selected as the MIAA's Most Valuable Player in 2004.

Stevens added 19 strikeouts in that 10-inning game against UMR, which equalled the old MIAA record. She enters the regional second to Deken in the conference for ERA (0.80), wins (26), shutouts (10) and strikeout ratio (7.93/7 IP).

Sophomore 1B Amy Beverly of Missouri Western made the first-team along with senior C Megan Spring of Northwest Missouri State. Beverly leads the MIAA in batting average entering the week with a .432 mark to go with 12 HR and 41 RBI. Spring was the unanimous All-MIAA choice at catcher, batting .366 with five homers and 30 RBI this season.

ESU had three members on the second team -- including the top two base-stealers in the MIAA in junior 2B Kayla Hubbard and freshman OF Morgan Viola. Each entered the regional tournament with 36 stolen bases -- with Viola yet to be caught stealing. Hubbard also was ranked fifth in batting (.379) and holds the conference lead in runs scored (54 -- .93 per game).

The third Lady Hornet, senior OF Lindsey Abbott, leads ESU in home runs (11 -- .193 per game is fifth in the conference) while batting .304 with 30 RBI and 17 stolen bases.

Rounding out the second team are Missouri Western junior C Tommie Mitts (.329, 4 HR, 15 RBI), Pittsburg State sophomore DP Libby Overman (.358, 3 HR, 24 RBI) and Central Missouri State sophomore C/INF Megan Bax as a utility player (.297, 3 HR, 25 RBI).

The first-team selections are now eligible for inclusion on the NFCA Division II All-America Team.

2004 NFCA All-North Central Region Teams

First Team
P - Lindsey Graham, North Dakota State
P - Christy Deken, Missouri-Rolla
P - Melissa Stevens, Emporia State
C - Sarah Carlson, Winona (Minn.) State
C - Megan Spring, Northwest Missouri State
1B - Amy Beverly, Missouri Western
2B - Jenny Bakke, North Dakota State
3B - Shilo Jorgensen, Nebraska-Omaha
SS - Elizabeth Economon, Truman
OF - Abby Velta, St. Cloud (Minn.) State
OF - Alicia Nortrom, Concordia-St. Paul (Minn.)
OF - Heather Hyatt, North Dakota State
DP - Kelsey Warning, Nebraska-Omaha
UT - Loni Wedemeier, Truman

Second Team
P - Katie Krauth, Augustana (S.D.)
P - Cheris Kuster, Nebraska-Omaha
P - Nicole Webb, St. Cloud (Minn.) State
C - Tommie Mitts, Missouri Western
C - Cindy Castleberry, North Dakota State
1B - Brooke Gentzeler, St. Cloud (Minn.) State
2B - Kayla Hubbard, Emporia State
3B - Megan Norris, North Dakota State
SS - Angie Berg, St. Cloud (Minn.) State
OF - Jamie Kettwig, Winona (Minn.) State
OF - Lindsey Abbott, Emporia State
OF - Morgan Viola, Emporia State
DP - Libby Overman, Pittsburg State
UT - Megan Bax, Central Missouri State

For more information, please contact:

Media Relations Department, Northwest Athletics | 660.562.1118 | Fax: 660.562.1582

Northwest Athletics
Lamkin Activity Center | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468