GREENWOOD, Indiana-- The Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference announced the post-season awards today for the 2017 softball season. The Mount St. Joseph softball team was rewarded for their stellar season, as seven players find their names among their peers. The Lions were rewarded with three first team selections, two second team, one honorable mention and one player was recognized as all-sportsmanship.
The Lions softball team won 20 games this season for the first time since 2003, and narrowly missed out on the HCAC tournament. Three Lions were awarded first team All-HCAC honors for the part they played in this season's success. That list is headlined by senior outfielders Morgan Kain (Batesville, IN/ Batesville) and Morgan Hoehn (Cincinnati, OH/ Colerain). These two players had the top two averages in the conference this season. Kain led the conference with a .429 average, she added two homeruns, 21 RBI and 21 stolen bases (2nd in the HCAC). Kain is one of the most decorated softball players in Mount history leaving the program as a three-time all-HCAC selection, and the career leader in doubles and stolen bases. Hoehn was the second leading hitter in the HCAC, with a stellar .405 average. She added 12 stolen bases, while not getting caught stealing a single time. Joining these two on the first team All-HCAC honor roll was sophomore catcher Savannah Sturgill (West Harrison, IN/Batesville). In her first season with the Lions Sturgill was a rock behind the plate for the Lions, and an offensive force in the middle of the lineup. She hit .357 on the season and added a team high six homeruns and a team high 32 RBI.
The Lions had two players recognized as second team all-HCAC Pitcher Danielle Nichelson (Glencoe, KY/Gallatin County) and infielder Brandy Bunch (Mason, OH/Mason). Nichelson was an outstanding two way player for the Lions this season, as she doubled as a starting pitcher and the teams primary designated hitter. As a hitter she was a solid performer hitting .264 with a homerun and 18 RBI. She had the biggest impact for the Lions on the mound, where she was 10-4 with a 2.40 ERA. Bunch started the season as the first baseman for the Lions, and eventually moved to third later in the season. She had a .280 average on the season with one homerun and 13 RBI.
Joining the previously mentioned Lions on the HCAC honor roll were a pair of seniors Paige Kiesewetter (Piqua, OH/ Miami East) and Katie Hoelmer (Cincinnati, OH/Colerain). Kiesewetter was the Lions number one starting pitcher and clean-up hitter for most of the season. As a pitcher Kisewetter started 17 games for the Lions with a 9-8 record and 3.46 ERA. Offensively she provided some pop in the middle of the lineup, to the tune of a .379 average with four homeruns and 28 RBI. For this performance she was named honorable mention All-HCAC. Hoelmer is a player who has battled major injuries for her entire career at the Mount. At one point this season it look like she may not play again this season. She ended up appearing in 24 games for the Lions mostly at first base, she hit .316 this season with 5 homeruns and 18 RBI.
This concludes a fantastic season of softball at the Mount, that saw the team narrowly miss out on the HCAC tournament. The Lions were able to eclipse the 20 win mark for the first time since 2003.