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Softball Places Three On Academic All-MAC Team

Courtesy: Ball State Athletics
Release: June 23, 2014
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   CLEVELAND, Ohio - - Senior third baseman Audrey Bickel (Munster, Ind./Andrean), sophomore pitcher Kelsey Schifferdecker (Belton, Mo./Belton) and sophomore designated player Sammi Cowger (Fenton, Mich./Fenton) have been named to the 2014 Academic All-Mid-American Conference Softball Team as announced today by the league office.

   A total of 22 student-athletes from the league’s 12 softball programs earned the honor this season, which is voted on by the league’s faculty athletics representatives. The number of honorees on the Academic All-MAC Team is the number set for the specific sport or 33 percent of the number of nominees, whichever is greater.

   “I am excited to see Audrey, Kelsey and Sammi honored for their hard work and determination to succeed both in the classroom and on the field,” Ball State head softball coach Tyra Perry said. “They are great examples of the type of student-athletes we want representing both our program and our university.”

   Bickel, a sport administration major with a 3.745 grade-point average, is a first-time Academic All-MAC selection. She started all 52 games at third base to help guide the Cardinals to the 2014 MAC regular season title. A First Team All-MAC selection and NFCA All-Great Lakes Region Third Team honoree, Bickel ranked fourth on the team and sixth in the conference with a .369 batting average. She recorded 14 doubles and nine home runs, including a pair of grand slams. Her 46 RBI ranked third in the league, while her 0.92 RBI-per-game average was 75th nationally. Bickel, who was also a MAC Medal of Excellence Award Winner, drove in five game-winning RBI, while scoring the game-winning run on one other occasion. On defense, she finished the season with a .988 fielding percentage by committing just two errors in 165 chances. She also had a hand in seven double plays.

   Schifferdecker, a business major with a 3.946 GPA, is a first-time Academic All-MAC selection. The three-time MAC West Division Pitcher of the Week in 2014, Schifferdecker led the Ball State staff with a 3.36 ERA, while posting a 15-6 overall record in 28 appearances in the circle. Her 15 wins ranked sixth in the conference, while her .714 winning percentage ranked first in the league among pitchers with at least two decisions. In 139.3 innings of work, Schifferdecker tallied 72 strikeouts while issuing just 48 walks. She posted a 6-1 record and a 2.29 ERA in MAC play, including one complete game shutout, to help guide the Cardinals to the 2014 MAC regular season title. Schifferdecker was also named the MAC Female Scholar Athlete of the Week on April 23.

   Cowger, a sport administration major with a 3.741 GPA, is a first-time Academic All-MAC selection. She played in 29 of Ball State’s 52 games, including 22 starts. She earned All-MAC First Team recognition after starting as the Cardinals’ designated player for the final 14 league games, helping lead the team to the 2014 MAC regular season title. Cowger tallied a .343 batting average during league play, including her first career home run in Ball State’s win over Akron (April 18). She drove in what proved to be the game-winning run in the second game versus Western Michigan (April 12) with a RBI double in the seventh inning. Cowger also scored the game-winning run versus Central Michigan (May 2), crossing the plate on a passed ball. She finished the entire season with a .313 batting average, two home runs, five doubles, eight runs scored and 10 RBI in 64 at bats.

   The Academic All-MAC honor is for a student-athlete who has excelled in athletics and academics. To qualify, a student-athlete must have at least a 3.20 cumulative GPA and have participated in at least 50 percent of the contests for that particular sport. First-year students and junior college transfers in their first year of residence are not eligible for the award.

   For the most up-to-date news on Ball State softball, follow the team on Twitter: @BallStateSB and @TyraPerry13 | Instagram: ballstatesb | Facebook: BallStateSoftball

2014 Softball Academic All-MAC (22 Members):
Kellie Roundabush, Akron

Jessica Schneider, Akron
Erin Seiler, Akron
Audrey Bickel, Ball State
Sammi Cowger, Ball State
Kelsey Schifferdecker, Ball State
Katie Yoho, Bowling Green
Alexis Curtiss, Buffalo
Sammi Gallardo, Buffalo
Trista Cox, Central Michigan
Cory DeLamielleure, Central Michigan
CarolAnn Sexauer, Central Michigan
Jessacca Gironda, Kent State
Emma Johnson, Kent State
Kim Kirkpatrick, Kent State
Dani Ramos, Kent State
Kristy Arbour, Miami
Shelby Miller, Northern Illinois
Adrienne Gebele, Ohio
Dakota Pyles, Ohio
Alyssa Wolfe, Ohio
Lani Ernst, Toledo

Honorable Mention:
Shawna Mailloux, Akron

Loren Cihlar, Ball State
Emily Dabkowski, Ball State
Braiden Dillow, Bowling Green
Shelby Fink, Bowling Green
Chloe Giordano, Bowling Green
Emily McClelland, Bowling  Green
Marisa Shook, Bowling Green
Erika Stratton, Bowling Green
Heather Ryder, Buffalo
Kristen Kuhlman, Central Michigan
Evelyn Lorimer, Central Michigan
Chelsea Sundberg, Central Michigan
Raechel Zahrn, Central Michigan
Myranda Barnes, Eastern Michigan
Abby Davidson, Eastern Michigan
Aoife Duffy, Eastern Michigan
Lindsay Rich, Eastern Michigan
Amanda Stanton, Eastern Michigan
Lauren Wells, Eastern Michigan
Michele Duffy, Kent State
Chloe Kesterson, Kent State
Lauren Kesterson, Kent State
Caitie Kilbane, Kent State
Abbey Ledford, Kent State
Lauren McNeil, Kent State
Kim Morgason, Kent State
Ariele Patterson, Kent State
Shelbi Tilton, Kent State
Erika Warren, Kent State
Nicole Gremillion, Northern Illinois
Ashley Kopp, Northern Illinois
Bryanna Phelan, Northern Illinois
Erin Lashley, Ohio
Leigh Nebendahl, Toledo
Alyssa Smith, Toledo
Jenny Rohn, Western Michigan
Melissa Palmer, Western Michigan
Christina Pigozzi, Western Michigan
Caity Pixley, Western Michigan

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