Former Huskies Conclude Season With USSSA Pride
Sept. 5, 2012
SEATTLE - Four former Huskies finished their professional softball season with the Florida USSSA Pride of the National Professional Fastpitch (NPF) League. The Pride had a 31-12 record and ended the season in first place, 6.5 games in front of second-place Chicago Bandits. Here is a recap of how the former Dawgs did this season.
Starting pitcher Danielle Lawrie pitched in 11 games, finishing with an 8-2 record, a 2.65 ERA, and seven complete games. Her 83 strikeouts and 1.06 WHIP also ranks her second on the team. The former two-time National Player of the Year had a busy season. Not only did she pitch for the Pride, but she also signed with the Toyota Shokki in Japan, where she has traveled back and forth this summer to play with both teams.
Ashley Charters, a three-time All-American with the Huskies, had a solid year with the Pride. The infielder played in 38 games, the second-most on the team. In her 117 at-bats, she recorded a .299 batting average, 22 runs, 35 hits, and 27 RBIs. Charters had team-leading two triples and finished the season tied for third with four doubles and four home-runs.
Shortstop All-American Jenn Salling played in 20 games, notching six hits, seven runs, and four RBIs. In the last regular-season game for the Pride, Salling hit a sacrifice to get a run in and help the Pride beat the Akron Racers 5-2 before heading into the NPF Playoffs.
Nikia Williams finished her first year of professional softball. The former two-time NFCA All-American was selected by the Pride as the 16th overall pick in the fourth round of the 2012 NPF Draft. On June 25th, when the Pride competed against the Carolina Diamonds on a nationally televised game, Williams recorded her first hit as a professional player during the sixth inning with a RBI single. The rookie played in 15 games this season, recording a pair of runs, one hit and one RBI.
For the first time in the nine-year history of the women's professional softball league, the championship final was not played because the field was ruled unplayable due to heavy rain throughout the day. The weather ultimately ended the season without crowning a champion, but the NPF is already looking forward to next year. NPF Commissioner Cheri Kempf recently released a statement, announcing a planned formation of a committee to look at the league's post-season policies and procedures for the future.
The Pride advance to the best-of-three championship series and lost game one before the series was called off.
"First and foremost, we want to apologize to all the NPF fans who have supported their teams through the exciting season. We were all deeply disappointed by Sunday's unfortunate weather-related cancellations of the final game(s) of the league's three-game championship final series," said Commissioner Kempf. "We want to make sure that this never happens again. Nothing is more important to us than the integrity of the league and its championship and we'll be working with our owners, board of advisors and outsiders to look at best practices across other professional leagues."