RICHMOND, Va., April 9, 2013 – Sophomore utility player Sarah Mooney (Huntersville, N.C./North Mecklenburg) is the Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Week for the second time this season and third time in her career as announced by the league office on Tuesday.
Mooney helped lead JMU to a 3-2 record last week, including a series sweep over UNCW over the weekend. Mooney hit .389 (7-for-18) with a double, three runs scored, two steals and a team-best seven RBIs. Against the Seahawks, she hit .417 (5-for-12) with three runs and five RBIs. The sophomore recorded a hit in four of the five games she played and had an RBI in three of them. She tied her career-high with four RBIs while going 2-for-4 in the series opener at UNCW on Saturday.
On the season, Mooney is hitting .410 with 10 home run and 41 RBIs. She leads the team in all three categories and is second on the team in runs (27) and steals (11). She is three RBIs shy of tying Jenn Chavez’s (2005-08) record for a season and three homer shy of Ashley Burnham’s (2009-12) single-season mark.
Hofstra’s Olivia Galati and Caryn Bailey joined Mooney as CAA Weekly Award winners. Galati was named the Pitcher of the Week while Bailey collected Rookie of the Week accolades.
The Dukes are hosting Virginia Tech at Veterans Memorial Park on Wednesday. This is the third time they have faced an opponent from the ACC in a midweek doubleheader. JMU swept a doubleheader at Virginia on March 13 and dropped a pair of games to No. 25 North Carolina last Wednesday.
The game is available for free on MadiZONE video. Pregame starts about 10 minutes before first pitch.
The Hokies are receiving votes in both NCAA Division I softball poll, making them the eighth team this season the Dukes have faced while they were receiving votes in a poll. They have climbed as high as 19th in the polls this year.
Madison leads the nation in stolen bases this season, averaging 2.89 thefts per game. Senior center fielder Jasmine Butler (Winter Garden, Fla./West Orange) leads the way with 29 steals in 31 attempts. She ranks fourth in the country with 0.81 steals per game. Sophomore left fielder Morgan Heath (Yorktown, Va./Grafton) is 76th, averaging 0.42 steals.
Butler also enters the week with 213 career hits, tying her for second on the school’s all-time list. She is 13 shy of tying Katie George’s school record.
Senior Haley Johnson (Ashburn, Va./Broad Run) moved into fourth on the school’s career RBI list over the weekend. She has driven in 93 runs in her four years and is two shy of tying Chavez for third.
SCOUTING VIRGINIA TECH
The Hokies are 23-9 and 3-5 in the ACC after winning two of three games against Georgia Tech at home last weekend. In non-conference play, Virginia Tech is 20-4 and 3-1 on the road.
The Hokies offense has surged in the month of April, scoring seven or more runs in five of their six April matchups. At the heart of the line-up, senior Courtney Liddle leads the Hokies offense, batting .382 with 20 RBIs, four home runs and 25 walks. Lead-off hitter Lauren Gaskill is batting .301 with a team-best 14 steals, 30 runs scored and five home runs. Sophomore Kylie McGoldrick is hitting .360 with four home runs and 14 RBIs.
In the circle, freshman Kelly Heinz and senior Jasmin Harrell have combined to throw 185 of 214 innings for the Hokies. Heinz leads Virginia Tech with an 11-3 record, 2.66 ERA, 107 strikeouts and a .230 batting average against. After winning 31 games and recording 33 complete games in 2012, Harrell is 10-5 with a 3.11 ERA in 87 2/3 innings this season.
Head coach Scot Thomas is in his 18th year with the Hokies, owning a 638-418 career record.
The Dukes and Hokies have played nine times, dating back to 2002. Virginia Teach owns an 8-1 advantage in the all-time series, including winning a pair of games in Blacksburg in 2012. VT won game one of last year’s doubleheader 3-0 before completing the sweep with a 1-0 win in game two.
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