May 10, 2014
DAYTON, Ohio – Shortstop Natalie Hernandez and pitcher Bridget Boyle were selected to the All-Tournament Team, while left fielder Courtney Heeley earned the Defensive Player Award and Hernandez claimed the Batting Champion Award following the completion of the Horizon League Championship on Saturday.
Hernandez was strong at the plate in all four of the Flames’ contests during the tournament. The senior concluded competition with a .563 batting average after going 9-for-16 and boasting three home runs, 12 on the season, for a 1.125 slugging percentage. Hernandez was 7-for-8 on day two, a perfect 5-for-5 against Youngstown State to mark a personal best, and additionally scored four of UIC’s 13 tournament runs.
Boyle shined on the mound after making three appearances and two starts to go 1-0 during competition. The sophomore pitched 12.0 innings, earned just three runs for a 1.75 ERA and struck out six batters. Boyle picked up her first career shutout victory against Wright State and tallied her first career save when she came in on relief against Youngstown State.
Heeley had an impressive three days out in left field, where she posted 17 putouts, one assist and no errors for a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage. The senior had five putouts in game one against Valparaiso and seven in the following game against Youngstown State. Heeley stole several hits from the Flames’ opponents and made a key play in game one against the Crusaders when she executed a double play to get out a Valpo runner at third. Heeley was additionally productive at the plate, where she went 5-for-14 (.357) with a RBI double and at least one hit in each game.
UIC went 2-2 in tournament play with wins over Youngstown State, 3-2 (8), and Wright State, 3-0, and a pair of losses to Valparaiso, 4-3 and 5-4 (8). The Flames collectively batted .277 with 33 hits and had a fielding percentage of .967, as Boyle and Alice Fitzpatrick obtained a 2.15 ERA.
2014 Horizon League All-Tournament Team:
Natalie Hernandez, UIC
Samantha Snodgrass, Youngstown State
Jess Gorman, Wright State
Bridget Boyle, UIC
Kelli Hutchinson, Green Bay
Tarah McShane, Valparaiso
Ashley Nannemann, Green Bay
Shannon Butts, Green Bay
Janelle Bouchard, Valparaiso
Abby Brinkmeier, Green Bay
Marissa Michalkiewicz, Green Bay
Kaitlyn Ranieri, Valparaiso
Defensive Player Award: Courtney Heeley, UIC
Batting Champion Award: Natalie Hernandez, UIC
Pitching Award: Ashley Nannemann, Green Bay
Tournament MVP: Ashley Nannemann, Green Bay