Iowa and Michigan Take Softball Weekly Accolades

March 8, 2005

Player of the Week
Emily Nichols, Iowa
FR, UT, Portland, Ore./Westview
Nichols had a breakout week at the Buzz Classic to earn her first Player of the Week accolade. She went a combined 10-for-22 (.455) with seven home runs and 15 RBI in eight games played last weekend, while also recording a 1.455 slugging percentage. Nichols opened the weekend notching two home runs against Georgia Southern and followed with another homer against Virginia Tech in the quarterfinals to provide the game-winning RBI. She established two school records against Auburn, hitting three home runs and recording eight RBI in a 16-1 victory over the Tigers. The Portland, Ore. native tallied her seventh home run of the weekend against Ohio State in the championship game, leading the Hawkeyes to their first Tournament title of the season. For her outstanding performance, Nichols was also tabbed Most Valuable Player.

Co-Pitchers of the Week
Lisa Birocci, Iowa
SR, P, Des Moines, Iowa/Lincoln
Birocci tossed her second career no-hitter, while also posting a school record 17 strikeouts against Georgia Southern at the Buzz Classic last weekend. She went 4-1 for the weekend and picked up a save against Virginia Tech. She finished with a Buzz Classic Tournament-leading 0.46 ERA and 33 strikeouts. She also led the field in innings pitched (30.1), appearances (6) and games started (5) to earn All-Tournament accolades.

Jennie Ritter, Michigan JR, P, Dexter, Mich./Dexter
Ritter went 4-0 with a 0.81 ERA, while tossing two no-hitters last weekend. Her first no-hitter came in a 4-0 win at No. 15 Florida behind seven strikeouts and no walks. Ritter followed with another no-hitter, striking out seven and giving up only two walks for a 9-0 victory over South Florida. She capped off the week matching her career best with a 15-strikeout performance against Florida at the Louisville Slugger Tournament. For the week, Ritter struck out 38 hitters and walked just four, while allowing only six hits in 26.0 innings pitched.