Polucha and Moore Highlight BIG EAST accolades
May 10, 2018

NEW YORK – DePaul softball earned several All-BIG EAST accolades in an announcement made by league officials on Thursday.

Among the top honorees for the 2018 season were Pat Moore as she was named the conference’s Pitcher of the Year and Kate Polucha who was tabbed as the BIG EAST’s Freshman of the Year.  

Moore had a dominate year for the Blue Demons in the center circle.  She led the BIG EAST with a 1.95 ERA while holding opponents to a .184 batting average. In nine appearances, Moore compiled a 5-1 record and a save, striking out 56 batters in 42.2 innings of work.  She allowed just 28 hits where teams scored just 12 runs.  The Medford, Ore., native was named the conference’s Pitcher of the Week twice (March 12 and 26) and was also named to the BIG EAST’s Weekly Honor Roll on three separate occasions.

Polucha turned in the conference’s fourth highest overall batting average (.380) this season where she powered to a .475 in BIG EAST games. Polucha’s 62 hits, including a team-high 29 in BIG EAST contests, led DePaul in 2018.

After finishing the season with a 33-15 overall record and a 15-3 mark in conference play to capture the 2018 regular season title, the DePaul coaching staff, including head coach Eugene Lenti, associate head coach Lindsay Platt, assistant coach Lynsey Ciezki, volunteer assistant coach Ashley Sunshine, and graduate assistant Morgan Maize, was named the BIG EAST’s Coaching Staff of the Year.  The Blue Demons carried a .284 batting average in 2018, driving in 222 runs on 366 hits.

DePaul led the BIG EAST with seven All-Conference selections, placing five on the First Team and two on the Second Team.

Moore and Polucha were joined by Missy Zoch, Megan Leyva, and Morgan Greenwood as All-BIG EAST First Team selections.

Zoch’s selection is her second time as a First Team honoree, receiving the same honor in the 2017 season.  In 2018, Zoch carried the BIG EAST’s second-best ERA (1.98) behind teammate Moore.  She went 14-5 overall on the season, going 5-1 in BIG EAST play.  In 44 innings, the Winchester, Texas native struck out 46 batters and allowed 18 runs, 12 earned, on 37 hits.

Leyva carried a .345 batting average in conference play, starting all 18 games for DePaul.  The right fielder made 18 putouts and tallied 20 hits, including seven doubles and five home runs, to drive in a squad-best 16 runs.  Thursday’s honor is Leyva’s second All-BIG EAST selection as she was a Second Team recipient in 2016.

Greenwood rounded out DePaul’s First Team selections as the conference’s top designated player.  In 18 games, Greenwood drove in 10 runs on 16 hits, including four doubles and three home runs. She carried a .463 on-base percentage while boasting a .558 slugging percentage in BIG EAST games.  Greenwood was also received recognition from the BIG EAST twice this season, being named the conference’s Player of the Week on February 19 while garnering a Weekly Honor Roll mention on March 5.

Rounding out DePaul’s selections for conference accolades were catcher Jessica Cothern and shortstop Maranda Gutierrez as Second Team honorees.

Cothern followed up her freshman campaign as the conference’s Rookie of the Year in 2017 with her second All-BIG EAST selection as a member of the Second Team.  The catcher, who was a First Team selection as a freshman, tallied 123 putouts behind the plate and provided the Blue Demons with consisting hitting throughout the season. With a .377 batting average against BIG EAST foes, Cothern tallied 23 hits that drove in 15 runs on the season.  Her four home runs in conference play were the second-most on the team behind Leyva.

Gutierrez was a dominate defender in the six-hole for the Blue Demons.  The shortstop made Derek Jeter like plays throughout the season for DePaul, keeping the Blue Demons ahead on the scoreboard.  At the plate, the Californian posted a .250 batting average and went a perfect 4-for-4 in stolen bases.

A complete list of the 2018 BIG EAST’s yearly softball awards can be accessed below:

2018 BIG EAST Player of the Year

Krystal Puga, St. John’s, Sr., 1B
 


2018 BIG EAST Pitcher of the Year
Pat Moore, DePaul, Fr.


2018 BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year

Gretchen Bowie, St. John’s, So., UT
 


2018 BIG EAST Freshman of the Year

Kate Polucha, DePaul, OF
 


2018 BIG EAST Coaching Staff of the Year

DePaul
 


2018 All-BIG EAST First Team
Pat Moore, DePaul, Fr., P

Missy Zoch, DePaul, So., P

Kaitlin Mattera, St. John’s, So., C

Krystal Puga, St. John’s, Sr., 1B
*
Angela Giampolo, Villanova, Fr., 2B
*
Alyssa Lach, Butler, Sr., 3B
Brittany Husk, Villanova, Sr., SS
*
Sam Crowley, Creighton, Sr., OF

Kate Polucha, DePaul, Fr., OF
Megan Leyva, DePaul, Sr., OF

Gretchen Bowie, St. John’s, So., UT
Morgan Greenwood, DePaul, Jr., DP
 


2018 All-BIG EAST Second Team

Kiele Miller, Creighton, Fr., P

Anna Brooks Pacha, Georgetown, So., P

Jessica Cothern, DePaul, So., C

Nikki Alden, Villanova, Sr., 1B

Sara Foster, Seton Hall, Sr., 2B

Tash Coffiel, Creighton, Sr., 3B
Maranda Gutierrez, DePaul, Fr., SS

Jenna Foreman, Butler, Jr., OF

Theresa Kane, Georgetown, Sr., OF
Lauren Zick, St. John’s, Sr., OF

Julianne Rurka, Providence, Sr., UT

Sarah Bennett, Georgetown, Sr., DP
 
*unanimous selection


 

 

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