CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa – Led by first team picks Brianna Chaplin and Riley Fisher, five Simpson softball players were voted to the 2015 All-Iowa Conference Softball team, as announced by the league office.
Following a vote of the league's coaches, Chaplin – a freshman outfielder – and Fisher – a junior pitcher – landed on the first team. Junior catcher Tori Haag and senior outfielder Stacie Brown earned second team honors and senior second baseman Ashley Prettyman was an honorable mention pick.
Chaplan (Indianola, Iowa) burst onto the scene in her first Iowa Conference game, hitting a grand slam against rival Central. From there, she went on to lead the team in batting average (.464), slugging percentage (1.036) home runs (4) and RBIs (15) in league play. She hit .395 overall with 18 RBIs and a team-best .814 slugging percentage.
A transfer from Des Moines Area CC, Fisher (Des Moines, Iowa) established herself as one of the top pitchers in the league, going 13-5 with a 2.69 ERA and three saves. She was the Storm's most reliable pitcher in conference play, going 5-2 with four complete games in eight appearances. Her 2.55 ERA against conference competition ranked third in the league and her 46 strikeouts were second to Pitcher of the Year Amanda Witzlib.
A first team all-conference pick a year ago, Haag (Waukee, Iowa) had another banner season behind the plate. In addition to directing one of the conference's top pitching staffs, Haag led the team in batting average (.403), home runs (10) and RBIs (36). One of the most feared hitters in the IIAC, Haag led the team with 16 multi-hit games and 10 multi-RBI efforts.
Despite missing four games due to injury, Brown (Des Moines, Iowa) was a steady presence in the Storm's lineup. The senior hit .309 with five doubles and eight RBIs and didn't commit an error in 24 chances in right field. She was also one of the team's toughest players to strike out, fanning just nine times in 97 at-bats.
The program's career doubles leader, Prettyman (Des Moines, Iowa) earns the second all-conference nod of her career after taking home second team honors in 2013. In just three seasons since transferring to Simpson, Prettyman has 37 doubles, including a team-high nine this season. She finished third on the team with a .330 batting average in 2015, adding two triples, four home runs and 20 RBIs. In her first season as a second baseman, Prettyman committed just one error in 49 chances in conference play.
The softball team earned an at-large berth in the NCAA Division III Championship and travels to Bloomington, Ill. for a four-team, double-elimination regional this weekend. Simpson is making its 15th appearance in the NCAA Tournament and first since 2010.
IIAC MAJOR AWARDS
Position Player of the Year: Abbey Strajack, CEN
Pitcher of the Year: Amanda Witzlib, LUT
Coach of the Year: Renae Hartl, LUT
FIRST TEAM ALL-IIAC
P Amanda Witzlib, LUT; P Riley Fisher, SIM; C Carli Radil, LUT; 1B Taylor Smola, WAR; 2B Abbey Strajack, CEN; 3B Jeanne Bramhall, BVU; SS Katie Sommer, WAR; OF Ashley Burrows, LUT; OF Andrew Smith, DBQ; OF Brianna Chaplin, SIM; DP Karlee Rock, CEN; UT Gretchen Lilienthal, COE; UT Meggie Schmidt, DBQ; At-Large Katie Wieland (SS), LUT
SECOND TEAM ALL-IIAC
P Mallor Schulenberg, CEN; P Megan Loes, LUT; C Tori Haag, SIM; 1B Alise Miller, LUT; 2B Marissa Schmidt, BVU; 3B Miranda McCay, LUT; SS Paige Schreiner, CEN; OF Lindsey Uphoff, LUT; OF Dani Stromert, LOR; OF Stacie Brown, SIM; DP Anna Strien, LUT; UT Haley Smith, COE; At-Large Katie Serpico, LOR; At-Large Whitney Sowers, CEN
HONORABLE MENTION ALL-IIAC
2B Ashley Prettyman, SIM; SS Stephanie Hayden, BVU; OF Micaela Forsyth, WAR