ATLANTA, Ga. – The Great South Athletic Conference announced the 2015 Softball All-Conference award winners in a banquet to fete the recipients on Friday night. Wesleyan softball highlighted the night with Jema Bravo winning Player of the Year, Mellissa Webb capturing Pitcher of the Year and Wolves' head coach Dickie McCarthy claiming Coach of the Year. Salem freshman Maggie Fritts won the vote among league coaches to be named Freshman of the Year.
Jema Bravo (pictured at right), a sophomore shortstop from Alpharetta, Ga., enjoyed a breakout campaign is 2015 in which she led the league in a bevy of major statistical categories. She was tops in batting average (.400), slugging percentage (.590), hits (42), RBI (25) and total bases (62).A member of last season's All-Freshman Team, Bravo has quickly become one of the most talented players among her peers.
Mellissa Webb, a junior pitcher from Ocala, Fla., helped spearhead a Wesleyan turnaround in 2015, winning eight of the 13 victories the Wolves claimed this season. She proved dominant in the circle, compiling the most strikeouts in the league (93) and the conference's second-best ERA at 3.49. Her 2.36 ERA in league play ranked third overall and Webb displayed her durability by leading the way in innings pitched at 131.1.
Maggie Fritts, a freshman centerfielder from Welcome, N.C., made a splash in her debut campaign to earn Freshman of the Year honors. She dotted the Top 5 in several statistical categories including leading the league in extra-base hits (14) and ranking second overall in slugging percentage (.577). Fritts also checked in at second in total bases (60), third in homeruns (3) and third in RBI (22). Demonstrating her outstanding bat skills, Fritts only struck out twice in 104 at bats on the season.
Dickey Hightower just guided the Wesleyan Wolves to their most successful season in recent memory as the squad racked up 14 victories against 21 defeats. Hightower became the softball coach at Wesleyan College in December of 2011. He came to Wesleyan with over 30 years of fast-pitch coaching experience in the state of Georgia. A native of Brookhaven, Hightower received his education at Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, Va. He played four years of baseball at VMI and graduated in 1965 with a degree in Electrical Engineering.
2015 GSAC Softball Awards
Player of the Year: Jema Bravo of Wesleyan
Pitcher of the Year: Mellissa Webb of Wesleyan
Freshman of the Year: Maggie Fritts of Salem
Coach of the Year: Dickey Hightower of Wesleyan
Softball All-Conference Team
Victoria Clower (Wesleyan), Jennifer Vitarelli (Salem)
Casey Arnold (Agnes Scott), Tiffany Cain (Agnes Scott), Adrianna Vasquez (Finlandia), Kierston Garner (Salem), Briana Crumley (Salem), Jema Bravo (Wesleyan), Jessica Fleming (Wesleyan)
Aimee Jennings (Agnes Scott), Alyssa Millikin (Agnes Scott), Katie Patenaude (Maine-Presque Isle), Maggie Fritts (Salem), Kayla Kennedy (Salem)
Utility Players (2)
Hillary Brewer (Finlandia), Brianna Morris (Salem)
Holly Jones (Agnes Scott), Lauryn Smith (Salem), Brianna Morris (Salem), Mellissa Webb (Wesleyan)
Softball All-Freshman Team
Molly Baker (Agnes Scott)
Alex Garcia (Agnes Scott)
Christina Krider (Finlandia)
Adrianna Vasquez (Finlandia)
Briana Crumley (Salem)
Maggie Fritts (Salem)
Brianna Morris (Salem)
Jennifer Vitarelli (Salem)
Victoria Clower (Wesleyan)
Jessica Fleming (Wesleyan)
Softball All-Academic Team
Softball All-Sportsmanship Team
Agnes Scott: Molly Baker
Finlandia: Heather Grimm
MPI: Whitney Donovan
Pine Manor: Jakenda Williams
Salem: Brianna Morris
TWU: Myesha Green
Wesleyan: Collen DeGraff