May 26, 2005

Softball Celebrates Season at Annual Banquet

May 26, 2005

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Junior Jessica Clee was named Most Valuable Player for Offense for the second straight year, while junior Shannon Linerud received Most Valuable Player for Defense, two of many awards handed out at the Santa Clara University softball annual banquet, held Thursday evening at Fiorillo's Restaurant.

First-year head coach Jaime Forman-Lau hosted the affair, set to honor the team's graduating seniors and to thank the Bronco fans and supporters for a memorable season.

Linerud also received the Ms. Clutch award for the second consecutive season, while senior catcher Daisy Mettlach was named Bronco of the Year. The Most Inspirational award was presented to relief pitcher Sara Overmier, while designated player/bullpen catcher Maggie Godfrey was honored as the team's Rookie of the Year.

"Our team improved so much over last year, and although it doesn't necessarily show up in the recordbooks, it is something to be proud of," Forman-Lau said.

Clee, who attended Sacred Heart Prep in nearby Millbrae, anchored the Bronco defense in left field. A second team All-PCSC selection, she was the only player to start in all 57 games, and led the team in batting average (.305) and runs scored (27). She boasted an eight-game hitting streak and totaled 51 hits, the season's best. She hit four home runs in five games and finished the season with 10. Clee's home run total, RBIs (43) and slugging percentage (.565) set program records for season bests. In career listings, she has cemented herself as the all-time leader in RBIs, home runs, slugging percentage and sacrifice flies.

Linerud, who prepped at Presentation High School in nearby San Jose, started 55 games at short stop, leading the team in stolen bases and triples. She had a six-game hitting streak and finished with 45 hits, seven of which were doubles. Defensively, she led the team with 140 assists and added 101 put outs. Hitting a game-winning RBI triple against Sacramento State to open PCSC play, and closing the season against San Diego with a 5-for-5 performance--including the game-winning RBI in the bottom of the seventh--are two examples of why her teammates voted her Ms. Clutch.

The Bronco of the Year award has been given annually to the player who best exemplifies what it means to play Bronco Softball, including attitude, effort, support of teammates, results and best representation of the program. Mettlach, a native of Kerrville, Texas, and a transfer from Missouri, started 30 games behind the plate, notching five home runs to place fifth in the program's single-season all-time listing. She added 18 runs scored, a .487 slugging percentage, and also saw time as a designated player.

Overmier posted five wins in the circle, including a complete-game victory against Cal Poly. She registered 41 strikeouts across 82 innings, and held opponent batters to a .293 average. She also earned a save against UC Davis.

"Sara gives 110 percent effort, she expects the most from herself and her teammates, and she's the first to step up to a challenge," Forman-Lau said. "It was an extremely easy choice to honor her with this award."

Godfrey, of San Lorenzo, saw action in 38 contests, recording six sacrifice hits and three home runs. She doubled in her first collegiate hit, and added a single in the season-opener against San Francisco State. Her first collegiate home run came against fifth-ranked Stanford.

The underclassmen took a moment to honor the senior class of Kelley Johnson, Daisy Mettlach, Keri Reisinger, Lacey Smale and Vanessa Werner. A highlight film chronicling the team's season was also shown.

2005 Santa Clara Softball Awards
Bronco of the Year, Daisy Mettlach
Most Valuable Offensive, Jessica Clee
Most Valuable Defensive, Shannon Linerud
Ms. Clutch, Shannon Linerud
Rookie of the Year, Maggie Godfrey
Inspirational Award, Sara Overmier