CLEARWATER, Fla. – After leading her Southeastern Oklahoma State squad (14-3) to a perfect 6-0 record and the Gold bracket championship at the NFCA Division II Leadoff Classic over February 15-17 in Tucson, Ariz., sophomore pitcher Jacee Bennett has been selected as the initial Louisville Slugger/NFCA Division II National Player of the Week, while sophomore first/third baseman Siarra Gomez has been tabbed as the Louisville Slugger/NFCA Division II Player of the Week for 2013.
A native of Colbert, Okla., Bennett posted a 5-0 record with a save, a 2.04 ERA and 24 strikeouts over 24 innings of work at the NFCA DII Leadoff Classic on her way to being tabbed as the event’s Most Valuable Pitcher.
Also chosen as the Great American Conference’s Pitcher of the Week, Bennett fired a complete-game during a 1-0 triumph over then-No. 8 Augustana (SD), worked two frames of relief and even scored the game-winning tally via a seventh-inning squeeze play in upsetting then-No. 2 UC San Diego (2-1), tossed 4.1 innings in a 6-4 triumph over then-No. 6 Minnesota State-Mankato, picked up a save in topping Missouri-St. Louis (2-0) and worked 3.1 frames in relief during the 3-2, Gold bracket title-game win over West Texas A&M.
For the Savage Storm in 2013, Bennett is now 9-1 overall with a 2.15 ERA, three complete games and 69 strikeouts over 65 innings of effort. She’s allowing opponents to hit at only a .206 clip over 15 total appearances in the circle.
Gomez also picked up GAC Player of the Week honors after hitting a remarkable .692 (9-for-13) with 10 runs scored, six HR’s and 12 RBIs at the Holiday Inn at the Falls Invitational. Included in her impressive weekend was a stretch during which she blasted home runs in five consecutive at-bats, tying a national record over all divisions. She also recorded 29 total bases and slugged at a staggering 2.231 clip.
For the season Gomez currently leads the way for the Golden Suns in virtually every major offensive category, hitting .458 with seven HR’s 12 runs scored and 15 RBIs.
Other Top Performances
Tampa’s Kayla Cox was 3-0 with a 0.00 ERA and 46 strikeouts over just 19 innings and K’ed 18 during a perfect game versus Missouri S&T…Sonoma State’s Ali Palermo hit .636 (7-for-11) with three doubles, three HR’s and seven RBIs during a four-game series against San Francisco State…New Haven’s Jen Palase hit .706 (12-17) with five runs scored in the first six games of her collegiate career while at the NFCA DII Leadoff Classic…Shelby Romines of Missouri Southern State hit .500 (10-for-20) with four HR’s and 10 RBIs at the Seven-State Classic on her way to MIAA Player of the Week accolades…Abby Sonner of Minnesota State-Mankato posted a .409 average to go along with six doubles and six RBI while also hitting safely in all six games (doubled in last five consecutive contests) at the NFCA DII Leadoff Classic…North Georgia’s Courtney Poole went 3-0 with a 0.95 ERA and 21 strikeouts over 22 innings at the UAH Charger Chillout.
2013 Louisville Slugger Division iI National Pitcher of the Week
Feb. 20 – Jacee Bennett – Southeastern Oklahoma State – So. – P – Colbert, Okla.
2013 Louisville Slugger Division iI National Player of the Week
Feb. 20 – Siarra Gomez – Arkansas Tech – So. – 1B/3B – Fort Worth, Texas