Softball Athlete of the Year
North Shore High School, Houston, Texas
Schmidt has enjoyed an outstanding career at North Shore. A
right-handed pitcher, she was voted her team's Most Valuable Player
three times. After giving up only one earned run as a freshman, she
helped lead North Shore to the state's Class 5A title as a sophomore in
1998, a year she earned All-Tournament Team and First Team All-State
honor. She pitched her team to the regional quarterfinals this year.
Also an outstanding student with a 4.0 grade-point average, Schmidt has
accepted a scholarship to the University of Notre Dame, one of the
nation's elite college softball programs.
"Athletes like Kristin Schmidt are among the success stories produced
in high school athletics today," NHSCA executive director Bob Ferraro
said. "She has worked extremely hard to develop her skills and has
become one of the best players not only in the state of Texas, but the
entire nation, and we are proud to be honoring her."
Catherine "Cat" Osterman
Cypress Springs High School, Cypress, Texas
"Athletes like Catherine Osterman are among the success stories
produced in high school athletics today," NHSCA executive director Bob
Ferraro said. "She has worked extremely hard to develop her skills and
has become one of the best softball players not only in the state of
Texas, but the entire nation, and we are proud to be honoring her."
Osterman, who will attend the University of Texas, was named the
Gatorade National Player of the Year after striking out 812 batters her
junior and senior years. As a senior, she posted a 19-3 record, struck
out 435, and did not allow an earned run all season. She threw eight
no-hitters in the first month of the season alone and led Cypress
Springs High to the Class 5A region semifinals. She batted .343 and
excelled in the classroom as well, earning a 6.071 grade-point average
(on a 6.0 scale). Osterman also struck out all 21 batters she faced in a
seven-inning perfect game as a junior.
Osterman was voted to the American Softball Association All-America
Third Team in 1999 and the First Team in 2000. Last summer, she helped
lead the Katy Cruisers club team to the Under-18 ASA Gold national
championship, striking out 106 batters in 53 tournament innings. She
also struck out 11 batters in five innings for the Cruisers in an
exhibition game against the Olympic gold medal-winning USA Softball
Fairfield High School, Fairfield, California
"Athletes like Alicia Hollowell are among the success stories produced
in high school athletics today," NHSCA executive director Bob Ferraro
said. "She has worked extremely hard to develop her skills and has
become one of the best softball players not only in the state of
California, but the entire nation, and we are proud to be honoring her."
Hollowell, who will attend the University of Arizona, became the first
pitcher in national high school history to record 2,000 career
strikeouts, finishing her career with 2,127 strikeouts overall. Her
career record was 126-15, and in four years allowed just one earned run,
for an earned-run average of 0.08. The 6-foot-2 Hollowell became the
first player to record back-to-back seasons with 600 strikeouts or more,
and once fanned 61 batters in a 30-inning game. Her record this spring
was 24-7, with five of the losses by 1-0 scores. Sports Illustrated magazine also recognized Hollowell's distinguished career with a mention in its "Faces in the Crowd" section this year.
University City High School, San Diego, California
"Lisa Dodd has concluded what can only be termed a remarkable high
school career," said NHSCA executive director Bob Ferraro. "The NHSCA is
proud to be honoring her as its senior softball athlete of the year."
Dodd, who played for Mira Mesa High School until her senior season,
capped a tremendous prep career by leading University City to the
California Interscholastic Federation San Diego Section Division III
title. Previously Dodd had led Mira Mesa to a pair of Division II
titles. The championships are the greatest team reward possible for
softball in California, a state that does not yet sponsor an overall
state championship tournament. In her entire prep career, Dodd pitched
in nine playoff games and never allowed a single run.
During her senior season she was 16-2 as a pitcher with a .16 ERA,
striking out 204 batters and walking just 18. Additionally, Dodd set
several hitting records during her career, including 224 career hits, 62
single-season hits as a senior, and 17 home runs, also as a senior.
Dodd will take a 3.2 GPA and 1,210 SAT to UCLA next season to continue
her academic and athletic careers.
Vanden High in Fairfield, California
Selden is also a pitcher, with a regular season record of 22-3 and a
.04 ERA. In 187 innings, Selden amazingly allowed just one earned run,
while collecting 422 strikeouts. She tossed 14 no-hitters on the season,
including six perfect games and allowed only 14 hits all season long.
Ten of Selden's no-hitters came in a stretch of 71 and 1/3 innings of
no-hit softball. At the plate Selden, who will attend UCLA, batted .453
with six home runs.
Olathe East High School, Olathe, Kansas
A third baseman who also can catch and play the outfield, Chapple led
Olathe East High to a 26-1 record and the Class 6A state title last
season, when she hit .636 with 40 RBIs. Olathe East stands unbeaten at
20-0 and is ranked No. 1 in the state entering this year's state
tournament series. A three-time All-State selection, Chapple entered her
senior year already in possession of eight school records, including
batting average (.598), slugging percentage (.978), on-base percentage
(.602), doubles and triples. Chapple, who will continue her career at
the University of Kansas, was a National Fastpitch Coaches Association
All-America First Team selection as a junior.
Keller High School, Keller, Texas
Often compared to former NHSCA Senior Athlete of the Year and
University of Texas pitching ace Cat Osterman, the 5-foot-11 Shortridge
improved to 24-1 this season after pitching back-to-back perfect games
April 22, striking out 30 of the 45 batters she faced. She has a 0.13
earned-run average and 331 strikeouts in 160 innings for Keller, ranked
No. 2 nationally. Offensively, she is hitting .539 with six doubles,
seven triples, two home runs, 24 RBIs and 36 stolen bases. Over the past
two seasons, she has allowed just five earned runs in 414 innings. A
two-time National Fastpitch Coaches Association First Team selection,
Shortridge will attend Baylor University.
Valencia High School, Placentia, California
Valencia is ranked No. 1 in the USA Today Super 25, and Taylor, one of
five Valencia players committed to Division 1 college programs, is one
of the major reasons. Heading into the Division 1 South Section state
playoffs, Taylor had posted a perfect 28-0 record, with a 0.23
earned-run average and 348 strikeouts in 185 innings. She threw a
perfect game and nine no-hitters during a junior season that saw her
finish 26-5 with a 0.13 earned-run average, and her 416 strikeouts (in
215 innings) made her the first girl to exceed the 400-strikeout mark in
Santa Clarita Valley history. Taylor ended an 18-3 sophomore season
with 58 consecutive scoreless innings. She will attend the University of
Cathleen "Cat" Hosfield
Riverdale High School, Murfreesboro, Tennessee
First, the bad news: Hosfield's senior season ended prematurely when
she broke her ankle sliding into second base while running out a double
on March 24. But the 5-foot-9, 145-pound pitcher did more than enough to
lock up Senior Athlete of the Year honors during a stellar junior
season that saw her strike out a national-record 659 batters in 257
innings - a staggering 14.74 strikeouts per seven-inning game. Overall,
Hosfield posted a 44-5 record with a 0.31 earned-run average, allowing
only 12 earned runs and 84 hits while walking just 28. The University of
Tennessee commitment, who ended her junior season with 1,259 career
strikeouts, threw 31 shutouts, three perfect games, nine no-hitters and
17 one-hitters to lead Riverdale to the Class 3A state semifinals. She
was named All-Midstate Player of the Year by the Nashville Tennessean.
Canyon del Oro High School, Oro Valley, Arizona
Last spring, the 6-foot Fowler became the first softball player - and
the 10th in any sport - to be named Gatorade National Player of the Year
as a junior after pitching Canyon del Oro to a 33-4 record and its
second consecutive Class 4A Division 1 state championship. After
overcoming life-threatening surgery and eight days in intensive care for
a vascular condition, she finished 24-1 with a 0.28 earned-run average
as a junior, striking out 309 batters in 148 2/3 innings while recording
four no-hitters. She also excelled at the plate, batting .448 with five
home runs and 33 RBIs. As a sophomore, she was 28-1 with a 0.16 ERA.
This spring, Fowler, whose fastball has been clocked at 71 miles per
hour, is 20-2 and pitched a perfect game in her final regular-season
start. Fowler, who has a 3.39 grade-point average, will attend the
University of Arizona.
St. Mary’s High School, Phoenix, Arizona
Escobedo burst onto the scene as a freshman in 2007, when she led St.
Mary's to its first 5A Division 1 state championship, pitching a
four-hitter and striking out 17 in an eight-inning 2-0 victory over
Sierra Vista Buena High to earn Big School Player of the Year honors
from the Arizona Republic. She finished that season with a 27-8 record,
16 shutouts, five no-hitters, a 0.73 ERA and 501 strikeouts in 260
innings. She broke that record this season, striking out 520 in leading
the Lady Knights to the championship game. That included a 6-0 record at
the MaxPreps Tournament of Champions, featuring a 12-inning perfect
game with 21 strikeouts in a 4-0 championship win, and she struck out
172 in her first 10 wins. St. Mary’s also advanced to the state
semifinals her sophomore and junior seasons. As a sophomore, Escobedo
pitched a perfect game, four no-hitters and nine one-hitters, also
hitting .357 with eight home runs, 33 RBIs and 14 stolen bases. Rated
the nation’s No. 1 player by ESPN RISE, she will attend Arizona State
Buffalo Grove High School, Buffalo Grove, Illinois
rare junior to be awarded First-Team All-America honors by the National
Fastpitch Coaches Association in 2010, DiPrima, an outfielder, holds
virtually every school season and career offensive record. Last year,
DiPrima batted .583 with 10 home runs, 43 RBIs and 67 hits – all school
season records – and also had 16 doubles, a slugging percentage of 1.035
and 33 runs scored. As a sophomore, DiPrima batted .542 and set another
school record with 23 doubles, recording 65 hits, and she batted .459
as a freshman with 15 doubles, 50 hits and 29 RBIs. Through her junior
year, she owned career records for batting average (.529), hits (182),
doubles (54), home runs (13), extra-base
hits (77) and runs batted in (95). She had 25 hits through her team’s
first 18 games this year. A four-year starter at guard on the Bison
basketball team, DiPrima scored 1,027 points in her career and played on
a state tournament team as a freshman. Also an outstanding student,
DiPrima, who ranks in the top 3 percent of her class with a 5.28 GPA (of
5.0), will attend Northwestern University.
Legacy High School,Broomfield, Colorado
Gaffin has been one of the main reasons that Legacy, which opened its doors in 2000, has now won five consecutive 5Astate softball titles and built a 70-game winning streak that carried into this season. Playing for her mother, Legacy coach Dawn Gaffin, Rainey, a 5-foot-10 right-hander, has been the Lightning’s starting pitcher for two years. She was named Boulder-based BoCoPreps.com Player of the Year for the second straight year after she scorched opposing pitchers for a .591 batting average and a school-record 15 home runs last fall, while compiling a22-2 record, a 1.74 earned-run average and 124 strikeouts onthe mound using a curveball-screwball combination. That performance also earned her ESPN Rise Player of the Year honors. Asa junior, Gaffin was a perfect 23-0 with a 0.98 ERA, striking out109 and walking just 18 in 124 innings, and in November of that year, she was named GTM Sportswear Athlete of the Month by the NHSCA. She also batted .693 with 13 doubles, 41RBIs and 44 runs scored. She is a two-time Gatorade Colorado Player of the Year, two-time 5A state tournament Most Valuable Player, The Denver Post two-time All-Colorado Player of the Year and the 2011 Colorado Sportswoman of the Year. Gaffin, who owns a 3.39 grade-point average, will attend the University of Tennessee.
D.W. Daniel High School, Central, South Carolina
Carley Hoover was virtually unhittable during her senior season. Hoover
finished the season with a 0.15 ERA with 338 strikeouts in 138 innings.
The four-time All-State selection was also great at the plate – hitting
.500 with four home runs and 45 runs scored.
Amador Valley, Pleasanton, California
Johanna Grauer had a nearly perfect senior season for Amador Valley in 2014. Grauer, who will attend UCLA, was a perfect 26-0 with 14 shutouts. She fanned 290 battles in just 190 innings with an ERA of 0.51 and opponents batting only .097. In three years, Grauer was 73-3 with 900 strikeouts. This past year, Amador Valley was named national champs by MaxPreps.com. CalHiSports.com named Grauer Ms. Softball 2014. Grauer is the fifth California softball player to be honored by the NHSCA.
Mission Viejo HS, Mission Viejo, California
Taylor McQuillan, the 2014 Gatorade National Softball player of the Year, led her school to a #1 ranking in the nation by MaxPreps for most of the year. During the 2015 season, McQuillan set a new California record for wins with 103. She finished the year with a 30-1 record and a 0.31 ERA.