May 21, 2014
WEST POINT, N.Y. -
Sophomore third-baseman Kasey McCravey was the recipient of the Darlene Dondero Award, presented to the team's Most Valuable Player, along with being named the Offensive Player of the Year, as the Army softball team handed out its varsity letters and team awards Tuesday evening at Kimsey Athletic Center.
Also among Army's major award winners were senior April Ortenzo, selected the Team's Defensive Player of the Year with plebes Alee Rashenskas named the Rookie of the Year and Tyler McKinney the Most Improved Player.
Head coach Michelle DePolo, who served as master of ceremonies, noted the team's success over the year to include earning its fifth straight bid to the Patriot League Tournament, winnings its tournament opener for the third straight year, and playing seven teams that earned berths to the NCAA Tournament during a challenging early-season schedule.
Included among Army's wins was the Black Knights' opening round tournament upset of top-seeded Lehigh (5-1 in nine), just the second time beating the Mountain Hawks in six openers and first since 2001. Individually, Army had a record-high four Black Knights earn regional honors to include McCravey (3B- first team), Amanda Nguyen (OF-second team), Rashenskas (2B-third base) and Caroline Smith (UTL/P -third base).
DePolo handed out the Army "A" to the freshmen and a letter stripe for the rest of the squad, along with saying something special about each member of her team. She also lauded her staff and the officer representatives.
In addition, seniors Ortenzo and Nguyen were awarded captaincy plates and presented with custom framing of their Army jersey.
McCravey, a two-time All-Patriot League selection at third base and All-Northeast pick, walked off with a pair of awards for the second straight year having earned rookie and defensive player in 2013. As the team's offensive player and MVP, she led Army with a .388 batting average that ranks seventh on the Academy's single-season chart. Her team-high 44 RBI lists third, just one off the leader, and her seven home runs are tied for third.
Ortenzo, a four-year letterwinner at shortstop, let her mark in the record books as she is tied with classmate Nguyen for games played (223) as both started every game since their freshman year. She is second in at bats (727), third in runs scored (114), fourth in RBI (109), doubles (43) and stolen bases (51), and fifth in hits (209).
Rashenskas, an All-Northeast pick, earned Patriot League weekly rookie honors a league-high four times. She closed out her first year with the third highest batting average (.346)on the team and was one of just four players to draw duty in every game.
McKinney, worked her way into the lineup drawing duty in 36 of her 42 starts in left field, and was the lone freshman in the outfield. She batted .207 in Patriot League games as a starter in 15 games.
Following the presentation, Paul Rader showed a video of photos he has taken of Nguyen and Ortenzo throughout their four years on the diamond.
TEAM AWARD WINNERS
Darlene Lee Dondero (MVP) - Kasey McCravey
Offensive Player of the Year - Kasey McCravey
Defensive Player of the Year - April Ortenzo
Rookie of the Year - Alee Rashenskas
Most Improved Player - Tyler McKinney