Tide softball, baseball players earn honors

Easton Tabs Alabama Team of the Year; Four Earn All-America Honors
(UA)TUSCALOOSA – Postseason awards continued to roll in for the University of Alabama softball team on Wednesday as the Crimson Tide were named a 2008 Easton School of the Year and had four players earn first-team All-America honors.

The Tide was one of five Easton Schools of the Year on various levels of collegiate softball. UA had a school-record four players – Brittany Rogers, Kelley Montalvo, Charlotte Morgan and Kelsi Dunne – garner first-team Easton All-America honors.

“What an honor for our program to be chosen as one of the Easton Schools of the Year,” Alabama head coach Patrick Murphy said. Brittany (Roger), Charlotte (Morgan), Kelley (Montalvo) and Kelsi (Dunne) all had amazing seasons and were very deserving of their All-America honors. We have a fantastic partnership with Easton and want to thank them for all they do to help our program.”

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Rogers, now a three-time Easton All-American, garnered first-team honors for the second straight year after being selected to the second team as a freshman in 2006. The Dacula, Ga., native led the country in stolen bases (60) and runs scored (79) while hitting .452 from her leadoff spot with a .502 on-base percentage. Rogers finished the year with a 19-game hitting streak.

Morgan, the Moreno Valley, Calif., native was also a finalist for the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year with a .417 batting average, 19 doubles, 19 home runs and 79 RBI at the plate while boasting an 18-2 record in the circle with a 1.27 ERA. Morgan’s 79 RBI set the SEC single-season record.

Montalvo, a Miami, Fla., native finished .373 with 10 home runs, 15 doubles and 54 RBI while posting a .511 on-base percentage and a .663 slugging mark. She turned in an amazing season at the hot corner with a .983 fielding percentage, making just three errors in 66 games.

Dunne, a freshman from Port Orange, Fla., has compiled a 26-6 record in her rookie campaign with a 1.44 ERA and 275 strikeouts. Her 275 strikeouts rank as the fifth-highest total in school history while her 26 wins are an Alabama freshman record.

Josh Rutledge Named Freshman All-American
(UA)TUSCALOOSA – University of Alabama shortstop Josh Rutledge was named to the 2008 Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American team by Collegiate Baseball newspaper, the long-time college baseball publication announced Wednesday afternoon.

Rutledge started 61 games for the Crimson Tide and led the team with a .369 (99 for 268) average with 11 extra base hits, 32 RBI and a team-best 62 runs scored.  He is the second freshman in school history to lead the team in hitting, joining David Magadan, who hit a UA rookie record .389 in 1981.  The 99 hits are the most in a season by an Alabama freshman and the 10th most in school history.

“This is a well-deserved honor for Josh Rutledge,” Alabama head coach Jim Wells said.  “Josh is an excellent player and he had a great year for us this season.  He is a really a good hitter.”

(From UA)