Butler softball continued to garner postseason honors as three players were named to the NJCAA Division I Softball All-American team, which was released Wednesday.
Young, Sullivan and Robinson received All-American status from the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) and FastPitch News last week. Butler has now had 10 total players receive both NJCAA and NFCA All-American status in the same season.
The Grizzlies were one of 1I Division I programs to receive multiple NJCAA All-American selections this year and were just one of five teams to place three or more players on the team.
Butler has now had at least one player receive NJCAA All-American honors in each of the last six years and brings its total to 18 players being named to the NJCAA All-American list. The Grizzlies have had mulitiple NJCAA All-American selections in each of the last three years (Megan Wurts and Morgan Bohanan, 2016; Becca Schulte, Regan Mergele and Brynn Minor, 2017).
Kenzie Young, OF, sophomore, Derby
Young becomes just the third player in Butler history to earn All-American honors in both seasons, joining Regan Mergele and Brynn Minor, who did so in the 2016 and 2017 seasons.
Young led the Grizzlies in five offensive categories – batting average (.488), on-base percentage (.572), runs scored (68), triples (7) and stolen bases (37) – while hitting 14 home runs and driving in 60 runs. Young also finished third on the team in hits (61) and walks (23) in just 46 games, as she suffered a season-ending injury in the final conference game of the year.
Young had a 25-game hitting streak with a .539 average (41-of-76), 12 homers, 47 RBI, six doubles, five triples and scored 40 runs. Playing center field, Young hit safely in 33 of her last 34 games before suffering a season-ending knee injury in the regular season finale against Seward County. She earned KJCCC Division I Player of the Week twice this season.
An All-KJCCC first-team outfield selection in both seasons as Butler, Young finishes as the Grizzlies' career leader in triples (13) and runs (158) while ranking in the top 10 in home runs (22, 10th), RBI (131, 4th), hits (9th) and batting average (.468, 3rd) and stolen bases (63, 5th). On the Butler single-season leaderboard, Young finished this season third in triples, fourth in batting average and seventh in both runs scored and stolen bases. Young set the school record for most runs scored in a season with 90 runs last year during Butler's national title run.
Brianna Robinson, P/DP, freshman, Henderson (Texas)
Robinson led the Grizzlies in home runs (24), runs batted in (85), hits (72), walks (28) and slugging percentage (1.040) while ranking second with a .483 batting average and 55 runs scored. She finished fourth among all NJCAA Division I hitters in runs batted in and fifth in both home runs and slugging percentage. Among Grizzly single-season leaders, Robinson finishes tied for third all-time in home runs and runs batted in - both school records for a freshman.
A true freshman transfer at break from Alabama State, Robinson had a 17-game hitting streak leading up to the NJCAA National Tournament, hitting .636 (31-of-50) with 14 home runs and 42 runs batted in. She was the top Butler hitter at the Region VI Tournament, hitting .800 (8-of-10) with five home runs, 12 RBI and seven runs scored.
Robinson, who was an All-KJCCC first-team selection at utility, drove in a game-high seven runs in a 19-2 road win at Northern Oklahoma-Tonkawa and had six games this season where she hit two homers. She earned KJCCC Division I Player of the Week honors during the final week of the regular season after hitting .588 with five home runs and drove in 14 runs.
In 19 appearances in the circle, Robinson went 2-0 with a 3.25 earned-run average, as she struck out 19 batters in 23.2 innings.
Named to the NJCAA All-Tournament team, Robinson hit .467 (7-of-15) with four runs scored and three RBI in five games.
Celina Sullivan, P/3B, sophomore, Albuquerque (N.M.)
Sullivan finished with a record of 23-2 with a 1.01 earned-run average and striking out 233 batters in 138 1/3 innings. Among all NJCAA Division I pitchers, Sullivan ranks second in strikeouts per 7 innings (11.90). Sullivan led the Grizzlies in wins, strikeouts, ERA, innings pitched, appearances (38), saves (5) and complete games (11). The sophomore tossed two complete-game no-hitters (at Northwest Kansas Tech, April 10); vs. Seward County, April 20) and had eight games of 10 or more strikeouts.
Sullivan also had a consecutive shutout inning streak of 37.2 (March 31-April 15) and was a two-time NJCAA Pitcher of the Week recipient, earning the honor in consecutive weeks. She also was named KJCCC Division I Pitcher of the Week six times.
Sullivan, who was named the KJCCC Pitcher of the Year and was an all-conference second-team selection last year, also saw spot duty as a hitter where she went .568 (25-of-44) with five home runs, 32 runs batted in, 14 runs scored and five doubles.
At the NJCAA National Tournament, Sullivan was named the Most Outstanding Pitcher by going 2-1 with a 1.56 earned-run average over 18 innings and four appearances. She allowed seven runs - four of them earned - on 12 hits, nine walks and struck out 22 batters.
Sullivan finishes her Butler career as the top Grizzly pitcher in career earned-run average (0.995). She also finished fourth all-time in career strikeouts (302), seventh in career wins (30) and second in career saves (2). In Butler single-season records, Sullivan finished this season third in both strikeouts (223) and ERA (1.01).
The Grizzlies have a total of 24 softball All-American selections under head coach Doug Chance since the 2005 season.
Butler has gone 164-11 over the past three seasons, winning back-to-back national titles in 2016 and 2017 and finishing third at the national tournament this season.
|BUTLER SOFTBALL ALL-AMERICANS|
|Gabrielle Hart||NJCAA, NFCA||2009|
|Maggie Ham||NJCAA, NFCA||2013|
|Sydney Stuever||NJCAA, NFCA||2013|
|Sydnee Eck||NJCAA, NFCA||2014|
|Morgan Bohanan||NJCAA, NFCA||2016|
|Regan Mergele||NFCA, NJCAA||2016, 2017|
|Brynn Minor||NFCA, NJCAA||2016, 2017|
|Becca Schulte||NJCAA, NFCA||2017|
|Kenzie Young||NFCA, NJCAA||2017, 2018|
|Celina Sullivan||NJCAA, NFCA||2018|
|Brianna Robinson||NJCAA, NFCA||2018|