By Thomas Corhern, TTU Sports Information
OXFORD, Ala. – As the Tennessee Tech softball team concludes its 2018 campaign, two Golden Eagles are closing off the season with some hardware as the team earned two selections on the postseason All-Ohio Valley Conference teams.
Senior catcher Bayli Cruse was named to the All-OVC second team while freshman designated hitter Taylor Thomas was named to the All-Newcomer squad on Tuesday as the league announced its awards at the awards banquet preceding the start of the 2018 OVC Softball Tournament.
Cruse finished the season with a .283 batting average as she drove in 31 RBI on 41 hits – both team highs. Cruse started in 47 of the Golden Eagles' 49 total games this season and tallied 10 doubles and four home runs. She tied Angi Sakamoto for 10th in career doubles during the final home weekend of the season.
Thomas had a great start to her Tech career, hitting .282 as she drove in 16 runs, hitting four doubles and five home runs. Thomas had a .455 slugging percentage and a .313 on-base percentage.
Eastern Kentucky took two of the league's superlative honors as Paige Murphy was named the OVC Player of the Year, while Jane Worthington was named the OVC Coach of the Year. Austin Peay took the other two superlatives as Morgan Rackel was named the OVC Pitcher of the Year and Bailey Shorter was named the OVC Freshman of the Year.
The All-OVC first team included: Rackel (pitcher, Austin Peay), Mollie Paulick (pitcher, Eastern Kentucky), Chelsea McManaway (pitcher, Morehead State), Madison Culver (catcher, Murray State), Danielle Liermann (infielder, Austin Peay), Haley Mitchell (infielder, Eastern Illinois), Taylor Beshears (infielder, Jacksonville State), Destinee Lizzmore (infielder, Eastern Kentucky), Murphy (outfielder, Eastern Kentucky), Rachel Anderson (outfielder, Southeast Missouri), Kayla Bear (outfielder, Eastern Illinois) and Alexus Jimmerson (utility/designated player, Jacksonville State).
The second team included: Brooklin Lee (pitcher, Belmont), Faith Sims (pitcher, Jacksonville State), Abby Tillotson (catcher, Southeast Missouri), Cruse (catcher, Tennessee Tech), Zoe Schafer (infielder, SIUE), Sarah Messex (infielder, Southeast Missouri), Hannah Clark (infielder, Eastern Kentucky), Alana Cobb-Adams (infielder, SIUE), Emily Woodruff (outfielder, Jacksonville State), Kacy Acree (outfielder, Austin Peay), Bailey Shorter (outfielder, Austin Peay), Lexi Rouse (utility/designated player, Belmont).
The all-newcomer team included: Rackel (Austin Peay), Beshears (Jacksonville State), Shorter (Austin Peay), Lillie Goetz (Murray State), Lizzmore (Eastern Kentucky), Cobb-Adams (SIUE), Natalie Schilling (Austin Peay), Carly Robinson (Eastern Kentucky), Kelly Mardones (Austin Peay), Bailley Concatto (SIUE), Thomas (Tennessee Tech) and Emily Corbitt (Eastern Kentucky).