Three Tigers Named to All-Midwest Softball Team
COLUMBIA -- Three Missouri softball players were named to the 2012 Louisville Slugger/NFCA Division I All-Midwest Region team, as announced Thursday morning by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA). The all-region teams were chosen by NFCA member coaches from each region, and all the honorees will now be eligible for selection to one of three 2012 NFCA Division I All-American teams. In addition, conference pitchers and players of the year not selected to the regional teams were added for All-America consideration.
Senior Ashley Fleming and redshirt junior Chelsea Thomas were selected to the All-Midwest First Team. Fleming will leave Mizzou as a three-time All-Region honoree, while this is the second time Thomas has been selected. Fleming is wrapping up her career with her best season yet, currently leading Mizzou in all major offensive categories. She's hitting .372 on the season with 11 doubles, 15 home runs and 48 runs batted in, while posting a .474 on base percentage and a .731 slugging percentage.
Thomas, who was named Big 12 Pitcher of the Year for the second straight year earlier this week, is 23-7 on the season with a 1.07 earned run average. In 189.0 innings of work, Thomas has struck out 262 batters and walked just 64, while opponents are hitting .160 off her this season. She has 21 complete games and 11 shutouts in 29 starts.
Being recognized for the second straight year, junior Nicole Hudson was selected to the Second Team as an outfielder. Hudson finished the regular season with a .306 batting average, recording nine doubles, seven homers and 36 RBI. She has drawn 31 walks, second-most on the team, and is a perfect 8-for-8 in stolen bases. She's third on the team in on base percentage (.428) and second in slugging percentage (.514).
Missouri hosts the Columbia Regional for the fourth straight year beginning this Friday, May 18. The Tigers will open play against Illinois State at 6:30 p.m. CT.