May 6, 2013
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – On the strength of a weekend series win over No. 9 Louisville to clinch the team’s 13th conference regular season championship in 18 seasons, University of Notre Dame sophomore Emilee Koerner and junior Laura Winter swept the final 2013 BIG EAST Conference weekly softball awards, the league announced Monday. Koerner was tabbed as the BIG EAST Player of the Week for the third time this season, while Winter copped her third BIG EAST Pitcher of the Week honor.
Notre Dame players claimed a total of 14 weekly conference awards during the regular season, including four player of the week and three pitcher of the week accolades. The Irish racked up an additional seven combined BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll citations.
Koerner (Tustin, Calif./Foothill) posted the second-best Notre Dame average during the 4-1 Irish week, batting .467 (7-for-15) with two doubles, a home run, three RBI and a team-high six runs scored. The sophomore center fielder opened the week with a 2-for-3 outing with a run scored in a home win against Eastern Michigan Tuesday.
She became the first player in Notre Dame history to surpass the 20-double plateau in a single season Wednesday at Western Michigan, logging a pair of two-baggers and two RBI in the Irish victory.
Koerner was a perfect 2-for-2 with a home run, two walks drawn and a team-high three runs scored in a game one win Saturday over No. 9 Louisville. Her third run scored of the game was the winning tally for the Irish in the bottom of the seventh inning. Koerner added a leadoff single and scored the first run of the game in Sunday’s series finale against the Cardinals, aiding Notre Dame in claiming its 13th BIG EAST regular season championship in program history.
Winter (San Diego, Calif./Rancho Bernardo) logged a 4-0 record in the circle and a 1.75 ERA in four appearances during the Notre Dame week. The reigning BIG EAST Player of the Week struck out eight Eastern Michigan batters in a complete game victory Tuesday. After entering in the fourth inning in relief Wednesday at Western Michigan, Winter threw 26 strikes in her 29 total pitches, striking out five Bronco hitters over three perfect frames.
The junior right-hander walked two batters and struck out three in a complete game win over No. 9 Louisville Saturday, and allowed one run on six hits with five strikeouts in the series clinching showdown with the Cardinals Sunday.
Winter continued her torrid pace at the plate, leading Notre Dame with a cumulative .533 batting average (8-for-15) and three home runs, six RBI, four runs scored, a 1.200 slugging percentage and a .563 on-base percentage. She began the week with a 2-for-3 day and an RBI double in a home win over Eastern Michigan Tuesday.
The offensive momentum continued the following day at Western Michigan, as Winter drilled a pair of home runs and recorded three RBI to aid her own cause in the Irish victory over the Broncos.
Winter went a combined 4-for-8 against No. 9 Louisville, smashing a solo home run in Saturday’s game two. Winter added a pair of singles, including an RBI base hit in the first inning, and scored one of the deciding runs to help lead Notre Dame to a 3-1 win over the Cardinals that clinched the BIG EAST regular season championship.
No. 1 seed Notre Dame opens the 2013 BIG EAST Championship May 9 at 12:30 p.m. against No. 8 Seton Hall at the USF Softball Field in Tampa, Fla.
2013 Notre Dame Softball BIG EAST Weekly Honorees