Monday, June 24, 2013

Keilani Ricketts Wins Honda Sports Award for Softball

Keilani Ricketts added to her already stellar resume on June 13 by winning the Honda Sports Award for softball for the second year in a row. Now, Ricketts vies to win the Honda Cup tonight at 7 p.m. CT on ESPNU.

The award is the top honor given out by the Collegiate Women Sports Awards and goes to the nation's top female collegiate athlete. Monday night's ceremony will take place at the USC Galen Center Founders Room in Los Angeles.

The 12 Honda Sports Award finalists from around the nation will be joined by the NCAA Div. II and Div. III Collegiate Women Athletes of the Year, and the 2013 Honda Inspiration Award winner for the hour-long live telecast on ESPNU.

Ricketts would become just the third softball player to take home the Honda Cup, joining UCLA's Natasha Watley (2003) and Lisa Fernandez (1993).

"It's an amazing honor to represent my team and my sport at the Honda Cup award ceremony for such a prestigious honor," Ricketts said. "I would like to thank the Honda Sports Awards voters and my teammates for making this incredible opportunity possible."

Since the introduction of the award in 1977, Ricketts becomes the seventh player to win the award more than once, joining such notable players as Danielle Lawrie (Washington), Cat Osterman (Texas), Jennie Finch (Arizona) and Lisa Fernandez (UCLA).

The two-time USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year, Ricketts helped lead the Oklahoma softball team to the 2013 National Championship, the second in program history. In the title-clinching win, she drove in all four runs in a 4-0 victory over Tennessee, including a three-run home run.

Ricketts was 35-1 this season with a 1.23 earned run average and 350 strikeouts in 238.1 innings pitched. She posted the second most shutouts in the nation this year with 16 and ranked third in wins (35), fifth in hits allowed per seven innings (3.61), sixth in total strikeouts (350) and eighth in both ERA (1.23) and strikeouts per seven innings (10.3).

Additionally, Ricketts hit .379 at the plate with 15 home runs and 60 runs batted in. She slugged .725, got on base at a .534 clip and was a perfect 9-9 on stolen bases.

The CWSA presents the Honda Sports Award annually to top women athletes in 12 NCAA-sanctioned sports. With this honor, Ricketts, a senior health and exercise science major, becomes a finalist for the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year and the 2013 Honda Cup. She was chosen for the Honda Sports Award by a vote of the National Fastpitch Coaches Association.

/// SoonerSports TV
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