Nine Sea Gulls honored by CAC as all-conference awards announced on Thursday

Nine Sea Gulls honored by CAC as all-conference awards announced on Thursday

YORK, Pa. – The Salisbury University softball team had nine individuals earn All-Capital Athletic Conference honors, including a sweep of the top three accolades.

Senior Molly Simpson was named the league's Player of the Year, while freshman Brooke Mizelle was named Rookie of the Year and Head Coach Margie Knight earned Coach of the Year.

Simpson is the 15th Sea Gull to garner the award in program history and it marks the 21st time in the past 23 years that the Salisbury program has had a player named the top in the conference. This season, Simpson leads the CAC and Division III softball in home runs, having connected on a career-best 14 long balls. The Port Tobacco, Maryland native is hitting .472, which is second on the team, while driving in 52 runs and scoring a team-high 57 times. Her 1.50 runs scored per game ranks fourth in the nation.

Simpson also earned first-team honors at second base for her 2016 season, marking her third All-CAC selection, landing on the first team in 2015 and second team in 2014.

Mizelle has stepped in to the pitcher's circle and made a quick impact for the Gulls (34-4), appearing in 22 games with 17 starts while posting a 17-1 record with a 1.13 earned-run average. Her ERA leads the CAC and ranks 21st in the nation.

Knight has now been named the league's top coach by her peers on 14 different occasions, garnering the award previously in 1997-98, 2000, 2003-'05, and 2008-'14.

Seniors Annah Brittingham, Kim Dorsey, Katie Sebbane, and Paige Knussman, and junior Caitlin Lake all join Simpson on the All-CAC first team.

Knussman ranks second in the nation behind Simpson with 11 home runs this season, while spending time at first base and the catcher position, being picked for the first team as a utility player. It marks her fourth year collecting first-team honors. In her final season in maroon and gold, Knussman is batting .450 with 16 doubles for an .845 slugging percentage.

Sebbane, an anchor to the infield for the past four years at third base, was named to the All-CAC team for the fourth time, and the third-straight year she's earned first-team honors. In 2016, Sebbane has batted .300 with a .421 on-base percentage thanks to 16 times being hit by pitches, which ranks ninth in the nation and leads the CAC.

Dorsey has been one of the top run producers in the nation, with a .482 batting average, which leads the CAC and ranks in the top-40 nationally, while driving in 56 runs. The shortstop's RBI total is tops in the league and is third in the country, to go with 10 home runs, third in the league behind only Simpson and Knussman.

Brittingham has won 17 games in the circle, with a 1.41 ERA while allowing just 3.87 hits per seven innings, which is the top number in the CAC and ranks eighth in the nation. She has struck out a CAC-best 127 batters this year, but has also done damage at the plate, with a .398 batting average to go with 15 extra-base hits and 22 runs driven in.

Lake earned her first All-CAC pick, as she has appeared in every game this year in the outfield, while batting .434, which is fourth on the team. Lake's speed has led to five triples this season, the top mark in the league and 22nd in the nation.

Sophomore LeAnne Collins was named to the second team, marking her second year as an all-conference performer, earning first-team accolades in 2015. This year she has batted .387 with seven doubles and a pair of triples while going a perfect 18-for-18 on stolen base attempts.

With the award winners named on Thursday, Salisbury has now had 168 all-CAC selections, with 144 of those (an average of 6.3 per season) named to the first team.

Salisbury, which won the CAC championship last week, awaits its directive for the opening rounds of the NCAA tournament, which the Sea Gulls will play in beginning on May 13.

To see the All-CAC team in its entirety, click here.

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