Jackson, Tenn. - 4/18/2002 - Union University Softball has once again taken both player and pitcher of the week honors in the TranSouth Conference for the week ending April 12. Rachel Murray was named the pitcher of the week while Olivia Craden received the player of the week honor. These two ladies helped lead Union to an undefeated 8-0 record for the week and moved the Lady Bulldogs into first place in the TranSouth.
Senior pitcher Rachel Murray was 5-0 for the week allowing only one run and 12 hits in 30 innings pitched. Murray, the 2001 NAIA Pitcher of the Year from Herrin, Illinois, struck out 40 batters with an ERA of 0.23 over those five games. On the season, Murray is 18-3 with a 0.30 ERA. She has struck out 192 batters in 139.0 innings pitched. Murray held almost every Union pitching record by the beginning of her senior season. This season she has added to her totals as she now has 116 wins and has 1148 strikeouts. She has passed for Herrin, Illinois and Union star Lynde Cappagreco as Union’s all-time career strikeouts leader.
Junior outfielder Olivia Craden was named the TranSouth player of the week for the first time this season. Craden, a native of St. Louis, Missouri, hit .500 (10-20) for the week with two homeruns, two doubles, six runs scored, and eight RBI. On the season, Craden is hitting .307 and leads Union with those two homeruns. She has 25 RBI, five doubles, and 20 runs scored on the season.
Union is 35-5 on the season and 12-2 in the TranSouth Conference. With only two conference games remaining, Union needs only one win to successfully defend their regular season title. The Lady Bulldogs hold a two game lead over Trevecca Nazarene (10-4). Union will travel to Pulaski, Tenn. to play Martin Methodist on Tuesday, April 23 for a double header beginning at 5:00 p.m.
The Lady Bulldogs have pulled off an extraordinary feat as they have gone a perfect 42-0 in the last four seasons in home conference games. It is no surprise that Union is looking for their fourth consecutive TranSouth Regular Season Championship.
Union is now entering postseason tournament as they leave for Wilmore, Kentucky to play in the NCCAA MidEast Region Tournament. They are set to open up play on Friday, April 19 at 3:00 p.m. as the No. 1 seed. Union has won the NCCAA MidEast Region Championship three years in a row and or looking to defend their 2001 NCCAA National Championship.
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