May 18, 2017
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- The University of Michigan softball team placed five players on the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) All-Great Lakes Region first team, the organization announced Thursday (May 18). With the selections of senior RHP Megan Betsa, junior utility player Tera Blanco, sophomore second baseman Faith Canfield, senior centerfielder Kelly Christner and senior shortstop Abby Ramirez, the Wolverines made up nearly half of the first team.
The awards honor softball student-athletes from the association's 10 regions with first, second and third teams selected for each region. NFCA member coaches from each respective region voted on the teams, and all the honorees now become eligible for selection to the 2017 NFCA Division I All-American squads.
The 2017 NFCA Division I All-America teams will be announced at approximately 5 p.m. on Wednesday, May 31, via NFCA.org.
Betsa, also a unanimous selection to the All-Big Ten first team, leads the Wolverines with a 23-8 record, 1.31 earned-run average, 376 strikeouts and 11 complete-game shutouts, including two no-hitters. She leads the nation in strikeouts, ranks third with 12.3 strikeouts per seven innings and 10th with 3.60 hits allowed per seven innings. She is a two-time NFCA All-America second team selection (2015, '16).
Blanco, a NFCA All-America first team selection last year as a first baseman, earned all-region honors as a utility player this season -- her first as a regular member of the Wolverines' pitching rotation. She owns career bests in all pitching categories, including an 18-3 record and 1.86 ERA, and leads Michigan with 43 RBI.
Canfield has enjoyed a breakout season in her first year as the Wolverines' starting second baseman, ranking second on the team with a .394 batting average and boasting 17 doubles, eight homers and 39 RBI. She also owns just two errors in 134 touches for a stellar .985 fielding percentage. It is her first all-region selection; she also netted her first All-Big Ten first team nod last week.
Christner, a 2015 NFCA First Team All-American, leads the Wolverines with a career-best .414 batting average -- a 101-point improvement on her 2016 average and a 21-point improvement on her previous-best 2015 average. She was also named to the All-Big Ten first team.
Ramirez earned her first All-Great Lakes Region first team nod after previously netting second team (2016) and third team honors (2015). She owns a .370 batting average with 44 runs scored, 20 RBI and 16 stolen bases.
The Wolverines will open NCAA Regional play against Fresno State at 6 p.m. PDT Friday (May 19) at Husky Softball Stadium in Seattle, Washington. It is Michigan's 23rd straight -- and 25th overall -- appearance in the NCAA Tournament.
Communications Contact: Leah Howard
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