William Penn Athletics #7 Story of the 2013-2014 Year
The cream of William Penn’s crop finds their way into the top ten as the #7 story from 2013-2014.
Seven Statesmen garnered high marks this past year by being named All-Americans in their respective sports. Two individuals–Brittanee Grove (softball) and Cameron Foster (men’s bowling)–were actually honored twice.
Grove, who was the Midwest Collegiate Conference Player of the Year, earned First-Team laurels from both the NAIA and the NFCA (National Fastpitch Coaches Association). She hit .444 (75-for-169) with 16 doubles, two triples, 17 home runs (tied a school record), 63 RBIs, and 57 runs scored. She also posted an .864 slugging percentage and a .520 on-base clip (27 BB, 3 HBP). Grove had an 11-game hitting streak earlier in the year.
As a pitcher, Grove was 6-5 with a 2.72 Earned Run Average in 77 1/3 innings. She posted one shutout and combined for another, while striking out 55 batters and walking 20. Opponents hit just .234 against the junior.
Foster, also MCC Player of the Year on the lanes, was an NAIA Second-Team All-America selection and an Honorable-Mention pick by the Collegiate Bowling Coaches Association. He finished his final collegiate season with a 212.1 average in 78 games, including a high game of 290. Foster posted eight top-25 finishes (five top tens) and won the Glenn Carlson Invitational in December.
Another league POY, Blake Walker of the men’s basketball team took home NAIA Third-Team All-America accolades. He averaged 11.4 points, 6.0 rebounds, and 6.5 assists in addition to 22 steals and 15 blocks. During the national tourney, he broke the school’s single-season assists record with 222. He had five double-doubles and one triple-double this year and was named MCC Player of the Week on February 24.
Women’s golfer Demi Coertze parlayed a strong second half of her season into a Third-Team award from the NAIA. The first-team all-MCC selection improved dramatically as the year progressed, dropping her 80.8 stroke average in the fall to 78.0 in the spring for an overall 79.2 clip over 23.5 rounds. She placed first four times (all in the spring), had a total of ten top-five finishes, and tied for 22nd at NAIA Nationals. She tallied ten rounds in the 70s (seven in the spring), including a career low of 73 on the final day of nationals.
Prior to signing a pro contract with the 2013 Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens, football defensive end Nick DiMarco accepted Third-Team All-America laurels from Beyond Sports Network. A first-team all-Midwest League honoree, he ranked second in the NAIA with 26 tackles for loss and third with 13 sacks (at the end of the regular season). He concluded the year with 55 tackles (36 solos, 19 assists) in addition to four pass breakups, three forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, and three blocked kicks. DiMarco scored two defensive touchdowns–one on a fumble recovery and one on a blocked field goal.
Wrestler Scottie Bonds and men’s track and field star Alex Edwards were given their All-America honors via top performances at nationals.
Bonds entered March’s big meet ranked tenth in the NAIA, but upset #4, two #6s, and #9 in the nation en route to placing third at 133 pounds. He was 4-1 overall at nationals.
Alex Edwards, a two-time MCC Track Athlete of the Year during 2013-2014, also excelled at the national level. He placed fifth in the indoor campaign, crossing the line in the 600-meter run race in a school-record time of 1:19.18.
#7 Performance of the 2013-2014 Year
The most decorated softball pitcher in William Penn history makes an appearance at #7.
Jennifer Whitehead entered 2014 as a three-time defending Midwest Collegiate Conference Pitcher of the Year and one her goals for her senior year was to make it a clean sweep. She got off to a tremendous start on Valentine’s Day as she no-hit Cardinal Stritch on Opening Day, but her second no-no of the year and fourth of her career was really special.
The senior southpaw struck out 12 Viterbo batters on March 30 as part of a 1-0 WPU victory. Whitehead did not offer up a walk and her defense was spotless behind her. The only mistakes she made were a pair of hit V-Hawks, but both were retired on double plays in the next at-bats as the Statesmen pitcher faced the minimum of 21 batters.
Whitehead was perfect in five frames and struck out the side in the second and third innings. She managed two strikeouts in both the sixth and seventh as well.
The original story can be found at http://www.statesmenathletics.com/article/5180.php