NCCSIA Announces 2014 North Carolina University Division All-State Softball Teams

The North Carolina Collegiate Sports Information Association (NCCSIA) announced its selections for the 2014 University Division All-State Softball Teams on Tuesday.  Twenty-three student-athletes representing six different North Carolina universities were named to the 2014 NCCSIA University Division All-State Softball Teams.

UNC Greensboro led the way with six representatives, all garnering first-team honors, followed by Western Carolina with five selections. Appalachian State and Charlotte had four honorees each, while Elon had three and Gardner-Webb had one.

Seven of this year’s honorees earned all-state recognition previously, topped by senior outfielder Samantha Meenaghan of Gardner-Webb with her fourth consecutive selection. Senior outfielder Carleigh Nester of Elon makes her third appearance on the all-state team, while senior pitcher Raeanne Hanks of UNCG, sophomore catcher Lindsay Thomas of UNCG, sophomore infielder of UNCG, junior pitcher Alissa Schoelkopf of Appalachian State and sophomore outfielder Jessica Plemmons of Charlotte received the award for the second time.

The all-state first team consists of pitchers Lexi Betancourt (Charlotte) and Hanks (UNCG); catcher Thomas (UNCG); infielders Bedwell (UNCG), Cynthia Gomez (Appalachian State), Danielle Vega (UNCG) and Dominique Madruga (UNCG); outfielders Meenaghan (Gardner-Webb), Dani Heichen (Appalachian State) and Nester (Elon); utility player Nicole Thomas (UNCG); and designated player Whitney Haywood (Western Carolina).

UNCG’s six first team all-state student-athletes sparked the Spartans to a 31-26 record, posting their second straight 30-win season. Hanks finished the season with 16 wins, a 3.11 earned run average, 17 complete games, two shutouts, three saves and 176 strikeouts. Lindsay Thomas, a first team All-SoCon and NFCA (National Fastpitch Coaches Association) Mideast All-Region second team selection, hit a career-best .388 on 71 hits with 57 runs scored, 17 doubles, 13 home runs and 49 RBI, while throwing out 13 base runners. Bedwell was named SoCon Player of the Year and earned NFCA Mideast All-Region first team after breaking three single-season school records: batting average (.401), RBI (66) and slugging percentage (.786), while adding 42 runs scored, 17 doubles and 17 home runs. Vega hit .325 on 52 hits, 27 runs scored, nine doubles, a career-best six home runs and 34 RBI, while recording 108 assists at third base. Madruga set career marks in batting average (.338), hits (45), runs scored (42), doubles (9), RBI (17) and stolen bases (10) to receive second team All-SoCon recognition at second base. Nicole Thomas, selected NFCA Mideast All-Region third team and first team All-SoCon at utility, hit .352 on 50 hits, 33 runs scored, seven doubles, 13 home runs, and 53 RBI, while also finishing 9-5 in the circle with a career-best 34 strikeouts in 33 appearances.
 
Appalachian State is the only other school with multiple first-team honorees in 2014. Gomez earned first-team all-SoCon honors after posting a career-high .341 batting average. Heichen also garnered first-team all-SoCon recognition with career highs in hits (49), batting average (.333), slugging percentage (.347), total bases (51), stolen bases (18), and on-base percentage (.368).
 
Charlotte’s Betancourt posted seven shutouts and limited opponents to a .242 batting average on the year, while winning 10 conference games with a 2.41 ERA and five shutouts.
 
Gardner-Webb’s Meenaghan, a member of the NFCA Mid-Atlantic All-Region Team and All-Big South Conference First Team, was second in the Big South in batting average (.435) and led the team in batting average, doubles (5), triples (4), home runs (3) and RBI (25).
 
Nester set the Elon single-season home run record with 15 blasts to repeat on the All-SoCon first team and join the NFCA Mideast All-Region third team.
 
Haywood, who saw action in the outfield, second base and designated player for Western Carolina, had 14 hits, scored seven runs and knocked in three RBI.
 
The all-state second team consists of pitchers Jordan Garrett (Western Carolina) and Alissa Schoelkopf (Appalachian State); catcher Jackie Kleinsmith (Charlotte); infielders Samantha Slade (Charlotte), Cara Parker (Appalachian State), Karley Harkey (Western Carolina), and Kara Salvo (Western Carolina); outfielders Jessica Plemmons (Charlotte), Courtney Price (Western Carolina), and Alaina Hall (Elon); and utility player Emily Cameron (Elon).

Nominees were submitted by North Carolina sports information professionals and voted on by the NCCSIA members.

Founded in 2002, the North Carolina Collegiate Sports Information Association (NCCSIA) is comprised of sports information professionals from NCAA Division I, II, III, NAIA and independent institutions from the state of North Carolina. The purpose of the organization is to promote collegiate athletics at all schools. Membership is open to anyone affiliated with a college, university or conference located in North Carolina, and whose area of responsibility lies within sports information.

NCCSSIA selects all-state teams in the University (Division I) and College (Division II, III, NAIA) divisions for men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s soccer, volleyball, softball and baseball.

North Carolina Collegiate Sports Information Association
2014 University Division All-State Softball Teams

First Team

     

Pos.

Name

Class

School

Hometown

P

Lexi Betancourt

So.

Charlotte

Garner, N.C.

P

Raeanna Hanks&

Sr.

UNC Greensboro

Rainer, Ore.

C

Lindsay Thomas&

So.

UNC Greensboro

Irvine, Calif.

IF

Katelyn Bedwell&

Sr.

UNC Greensboro

Surrey, B.C.

IF

Cynthia Gomez

Jr.

Appalachian State University

Oxnard, Calif.

IF

Danielle Vega

So.

UNC Greensboro

Rialto, Calif.

IF

Dominique Madruga

Jr.

UNC Greensboro

San Diego, Calif.

OF

Samantha Meenaghan&%#

Sr.

Gardner-Webb University

Atlantic Beach, Fla.

OF

Dani Heichen

Jr.

Appalachian State University

Pemborke Pines, Fla.

OF

Carleigh Nester&%

Sr.

Elon University

Kernersville, N.C.

UTL

Nicole Thomas

So.

UNC Greensboro

Irvine, Calif.

DP

Whitney Haywood

Fr.

Western Carolina University

Indian Trail, N.C.

         

Second Team

     

Pos.

Name

Class

School

Hometown

P

Jordan Garrett

Jr.

Western Carolina University

Henderson, N.C.

P

Alissa Schoelkopf&

Jr.

Appalachian State University

Sewell, N.J.

C

Jackie Kleinsmith

Jr.

Charlotte

Santa Maria, Calif

IF

Samantha Slade

Jr.

Charlotte

Apex, N.C.

IF

Cara Parker

Fr.

Appalachian State University

Lake Park, Ga.

IF

Karley Harkey

So.

Western Carolina University

Cleveland, N.C.

IF

Kara Salvo

Fr.

Western Carolina University

Waxhaw, N.C.

OF

Jessica Plemmons&

So.

Charlotte

Lexington, N.C.

OF

Courtney Price

Fr.

Western Carolina University

Matthews, N.C.

OF

Alaina Hall

Fr.

Elon University

Suwanee, N.C.

UTL

Emily Cameron

So.

Elon University

Kennesaw, Ga.

& - Named to 2013 All-State Team
% - Named to 2012 All-State Team
# - Named to 2011 All-State Team