RADFORD, Va. – Five players on the Radford softball team were tabbed with Big South postseason honors, as voted on by the coaches, which were announced on Tuesday afternoon.
Pitchers’ Kayla Huffman and Abby Morrow earned All-Conference Honorable Mention, while freshmen Talia Douglas and Brianna Mills were garnered Big South All-Freshman and Marissa Gagliano rounded out the honors with a spot on the All-Academic Team.
The pitching staff has been solid all season and has posted a 2.58 team ERA with 214 strikeouts. The trio of pitchers also rank 16th in the country with a 3.45 strikeout to walk ratio. The two pitchers that earned postseason honors have only allowed 41 total walks.
Part of that is Morrow, who has only allowed 0.74 walks per seven innings, which ranks third in the nation. She has only allowed 20 walks through 188.2 innings pitched. The Ruther Glen, native has moved inside the top 10 in almost every career pitching category at Radford. She even holds the all-time record for appearances with 170. This season she has picked up 21 wins for the first time in her career, but has recorded 20 wins in the last three seasons.
The other half of the one, two punch is Huffman. She leads the team with 100 strikeouts and a 2.04 ERA, along with only allowing 21 walks. The King William, Va., native has posted a 10-4 record with a 5-2 record against Big South teams and has tallied 59 of her 100 punch outs in conference play. Huffman is no stranger to going the distance with six complete games this season and has even come in to close some games with three saves on the season. She is 8.2 innings shy of setting a career-high for innings pitched in a season.
Offensively these two freshmen have done a lot of this team in their first season. Douglas and Mills have a combined 82 hits including 12 home runs, 15 doubles and three triples. Together they have recorded 47 RBIs and average a .488 slugging percentage, along with a .359 on-base percentage.
Douglas leads the two freshman with a .318 average and 50 hits. After starting the season at second base, she moved over to third and has played 27 games in the hot corner. The two-time Big South Freshman of the Week has recorded 105 assists this season, which is tied for the team lead. The Melbourne, Fla., native has scored 30 runs and has hit six home runs, which ranks second on the team.
Mills has been a key contributor in the outfield. She is tied with Douglas with six home runs, which is second on the team. The Gretna, Va., native has heated up lately at the plate with five home runs since April 3rd. Mills has 13 extra base hits, including two triples, which is tied for the team lead. Defensively, Mills has used her arm to throw out eight runners, which is the most of any outfielder on the team.
Rounding out the all-conference honorees, Gagliano was named to the All-Academic Team. She has contributed in the classroom and on the field. The Exercise, Sports and Health Education major possesses a cumulative 3.81 GPA. The everyday shortstop set the Radford record with a 36-game reached base streak and leads the team in hits (59), batting average (.369), on-base percentage (.469), stolen bases (19) and doubles (14).
These five Highlanders, along with the rest of the team begin the Big South Tournament with Winthrop on Wednesday at 2:30 p.m., inside the Radford Softball Stadium.
Credit: Radford University Athletics