Thomas senior Sydney LeBourveau (Jericho, Vt.) has been selected as the North Atlantic Conference (NAC) Softball Player of the Year, while Husson junior Jen Jones (Acton, Maine) was tabbed Pitcher of the Year, and Husson freshman Whitney Bess (Madison, Maine) earned Rookie of the Year honors. Thomas senior Katie Taylor (Lebanon, Maine) was chosen as the Senior Scholar-Athlete, and Thomas head coach Ali Kriegel was voted Coach of the Year. Seven softball student-athletes were named to the Sportsmanship Team and 19 women were placed on the All-Conference Teams.
NAC All-Conference selections are determined by a vote of the conference head coaches.
Sydney LeBourveau (Jericho, Vermont) is the NAC Softball Player of the Year for the second year in a row. In 2019, LeBourveau started as pitcher, third base, first base, outfield, and designated player for Thomas. Defensively, she was charged with only two errors on 48 total chances, earning a .958 fielding percentage in conference games. She pitched one complete game shutout in a conference tilt, earning a 1.17 ERA and .136 batting-against average over six innings. Offensively, LeBourveau hit 18-for-34 (.529) with four doubles, two home runs, and one stolen base in 34 at bats over 12 NAC games. Her batting average and .590 on-base-percentage are second-best in the league, and she led the NAC with 16 RBIs in conference games. LeBourveau and the Terriers will host the NAC Championship double-elimination tournament as the top seed this weekend.
Husson junior Jen Jones earned her second-consecutive NAC Softball Pitcher of the Year award. Jones was selected as the NAC Player and Pitcher of the Week (April 7), and also earned FastPitch News National Player of the Week honors (April 11). Jones racked up 50 strikeouts, four wins, and one save over 36 innings pitched, while allowing only five earned runs for a .97 ERA in six starts and seven total conference game appearances. She allowed only one home run, one triple, and two doubles while tallying 9.72 strikeouts per seven innings. An accurate pitcher, she is charged with only one wild pitch while holding opponents to .175 batting average in 126 at bats. Jones also contributed on the other side of the plate with 14 hits in 29 at bats (.483), including five doubles and a home run, while only striking out twice. She scored 13 runs and batted in 11 more to help the Eagles enter the NAC Championship tournament with the No. 2 seed.
Freshman Whitney Bess (Madison, Maine) is the 2019 NAC Softball Rookie of the Year. Bess was perfect defensively in the outfield and at third base for the Eagles in 12 NAC games, and was selected as the Player of the Week for the week ending April 21. Offensively, she hit .487 with 19 hits in 39 at bats. She scored a league-leading 16 runs and ranks third overall with two triples and 15 RBI in conference games. Bess walked three times, stole three bases, and earned 24 total bases while only striking out five times to help the Eagles enter the NAC Championship tournament with the No. 2 seed.
Katie Taylor (Lebanon, Maine) is the 2019 NAC Softball Senior Scholar Athlete. A Political Science/Pre-Law student with a 3.99 GPA, Taylor has been on the President's list every semester at Thomas. She is President of Alpha Chi Honor Society and has won three prestigious academic awards at Thomas including the Gold Key Award, Terrier Award, and Thomas Award. Most recently, she was awarded both the Senior Scholar Athlete and Senior Outstanding Athlete awards at Thomas. She is a Peer Mentor, Peer Tutor, and Student Ambassador, and also the Vice President of the Law & Policy Club. Taylor has been on the NAC All-Academic Team for both softball and field hockey from 2016-2018. She is a three-time NFHCA Scholar of Distinction (field hockey), and three-time NFHCA National Academic Squad member (field hockey). Taylor has been chosen as the 2019 Undergraduate Commencement Speaker for Thomas and will be attending UNH Law School this fall. She is also a First Team All-Conference center fielder with a 1.000 fielding percentage who hit 17-for-34 (.436) with three doubles, eight RBI, and 13 runs scored in 12 conference games this year.
Thomas College head coach Ali Kriegel is the 2019 NAC Softball Coach of the Year. After five years as the program's assistant coach, Kriegel's Terriers (22-8 overall, 11-1 NAC) earned the top-seed in the NAC Championship in her first year at the helm. This year, Kriegel's players led the league offensively in RBIs (16) and stolen bases (11), and her pitchers led the conference in wins (5) and and ERA (0.42) in 12 conference games. Collectively, her team led the NAC in batting average against (.157), shutouts (7), and ERA (1.31), as well as batting average (.416), on base percentage (.482), stolen bases (35), hits (147), and walks (41) in 353 at bats in league play. Her players were selected as NAC Athletes of the Week five times, and also earned Player of the Year and Senior Scholar Athlete honors. She placed six players on the All-Conference team, and aims to secure the NAC automatic qualification bid to the 2019 NCAA Softball Championship with a NAC title this weekend.
Joining Jones, LeBourveau, and Taylor on the First Team are Husson senior outfielder Olivia Smith and junior second base Bri Brochu; Thomas senior shortstop Lexi Colpack, freshman catcher Bailey Dunphy, and freshman pitcher/utility player Kelsey Currier; UMaine-Presque Isle junior short stop Sarah Duncklee, and SUNY Canton senior outfielder Valerie Clark.
Joining Bess on the Second Team are Husson junior first base Morgan Coleman; SUNY Canton freshman pitcher/utility player Jordan Knapp and senior infielder Jaedyn Ossont; Thomas junior infielder Lauren Guppy; UMaine-Farmington sophomore catcher/first base Kaleigh Oberg, junior pitcher/center field Brianna McGrath, and senior pitcher/first base Kaitlin Hill; and UMaine-Presque Isle sophomore infielder Melanee Taylor.
2019 NAC Softball All-Conference Teams
To view a PDF list of the All-Conference team click HERE.
P/OF - Jen Jones, Senior, Husson
C/OF - Bailey Dunphy, Freshman, Thomas
SS - Sarah Duncklee, Junior, UMaine-Presque Isle
2B - Bri Brochu, Junior, Husson
P/Util. - Kelsey Currier, Freshman, Thomas
SS - Lexi Colpack, Senior, Thomas
OF - Olivia Smith, Senior, Husson
CF - Katie Taylor, Senior, Thomas
OF - Valerie Clark, Senior, SUNY Canton
DP/Util. - Sydney LeBourveau, Senior, Thomas
C/INF - Kaleigh Oberg, Sophomore, UMaine-Farmington
INF - Melanee Terry, Sophomore, UMaine-Presque Isle
OF/3B - Whitney Bess, Freshman, Husson
1B - Morgan Coleman, Junior, Husson
P/CF - Brianna McGrath, Junior, UMaine-Farmington
P/1B - Kailyn Hill, Senior, UMaine-Farmington
INF – Lauren Guppy, Senior, Thomas
P/U – Jordan Knapp, Freshman, SUNY Canton
INF- Jaedyn Ossont, Senior, SUNY Canton
Player of the Year
Sydney LeBourveau, Senior, Thomas
Pitcher of the Year
Jen Jones, Junior, Husson
Rookie of the Year
Whitney Bess, Freshman, Husson
Senior Scholar Athlete of the Year
Katie Taylor, Senior, Thomas
Coach of the Year
Ali Kriegel, Thomas
Raechel Yost, Senior, SUNY Canton
Nicole Mooney, Sophomore, Northern Vermont-Johnson
Cecilia Chamul, Junior, Northern Vermont-Lyndon
Arika Brochu, Senior, Husson
Anna Piirainen, Sophomore, Thomas
Alyssa Dillan, Junior, UMaine-Farmington
Sarah Duncklee, Junior, UMaine-Presque Isle
The NAC Softball Sportsmanship Team is reserved for those who have distinguished themselves through demonstrated acts of sportsmanship and ethical behavior. The honorees are individuals who have positively affected the softball culture and environment and whose behavior clearly demonstrates sportsmanship and integrity that go beyond the playing rules and etiquette.