Lady Topper softball receives All-Sun Belt honors

Austin Lanter

Five WKU Lady Topper softball players were honored by the Sun Belt Conference Tuesday as the league announced its All-Conference team.

The five honorees is tied for the most in program history as it has occurred two other times in 2004 and in 2013.

Senior infielder Olivia Watkins and junior infielder Preslie Cruce were named to the All-Sun Belt First Team along with senior outfielder Kelsie Mattox who was selected to the First Team in an at-large capacity.

Also honored were seniors Emily Rousseau and Amanda Thomas as they were named to the All-Conference Second Team for their efforts this season.

Watkins hit .436 on the season, good enough for second in the conference. She also ranked in the top 10 in the conference in on base percentage, runs scored, total bases, and sacrifice bunts. She led the conference in stolen bases and hits as well.

Cruce’s name was also among the top 10 in the conference in multiple categories. She totaled a batting average of .310 this season with 49 hits and 31 RBI’s.

Mattox was right behind Cruce with a .309 batting average and 46 total hits with 37 RBI’s.

Rousseau had the seventh best ERA in the league at 2.90 and finished the regular season second in the league in innings pitcher at 217.1. She was also third in the league in strikeouts at 168 while pitching 17 wins in her senior campaign. 

Thomas started all 55 games for WKU this season at shortstop and hit just under .300 on the season. She led the league in sacrifice flies and tallied almost as many RBI’s as hits coming in at 49 and 51 respectively. The 49 RBI’s was good enough for third in the league.

The team will play its first game of the Sun Belt tournament Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. in Lafayette, La. WKU will play the winner of Texas State and UT-Arlington, a game that is to be played earlier that day.