Three Bruins Named to USA Softball Watch List

Jan. 28, 2005

Oklahoma City, OK - Three UCLA softball players, juniors Caitlin Benyi and Andrea Duran and sophomore Jodie Legaspi, have been identified by USA Softball on the initial watch list for the presentation 2005 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Award. UCLA's Stacey Nuveman was the inaugural recipient of the award following the 2002 season.

The Amateur Softball Association, the National Governing Body of Softball in the United States, announced today its initial watch list for the 4th annual USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Award. This award, which is considered the Heisman Trophy in women's collegiate softball, is designed to recognize outstanding athletic achievement by female collegiate softball players across the country. Past winners of this award include UCLA's Stacey Nuveman, Texas pitcher Cat Osterman and Florida State's Jessica Van der Linden.

The watch list is comprised of 40 players that represent 23 colleges and 10 different Conferences. A list of 25 finalists will be announced on April 5. A player does not have to be on the watch list to be considered for the top 25. But once the Top 25 is named the remaining finalist must be pared down from that list.

Just days before the start of post-season play, a list of 10 finalists will be named and released on May 10th. The three finalists will be announced May 31st. The winner of the 2005 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Award will be announced at the 2005 NCAA Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City.

A replica of the award will be placed in a permanent display in the ASA National Softball Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City, along with photos of the winner. An additional replica of the award will be presented to the player's academic institution.

This year's watch list contains eight players that were among the 10 finalist in 2004 and one that is a past recipient of this award.

The Amateur Softball Association, founded in 1933, is the National Governing Body of amateur softball in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic Committee. As the National Governing Body, the ASA is responsible for identifying, selecting and training male and female athletes to compete in World, Pan American and Olympic competitions.

2005 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Watch List:
(listed in alphabetical order)

Monica Abbott - Tennessee (Salinas, CA) - Sophomore
Kelly Anderson - California (Woodland, CA) - Junior
Caitlin Benyi - UCLA (Scottsdale, AZ) - Junior
Gina Carbonatto - Pacific (Lake Stevens, WA) - Sophomore
Kasi Carroll - Georgia (Norris City, IL) - Sophomore
Meredith Cervenka - Long Beach State (La Crescenta, CA) - Senior
Autumn Champion - Arizona (Tustin, CA) - Junior
Megan Ciolli - Notre Dame (Terre Haute, IN) - Senior
Christina Clark - Fresno State (Santa Ana, CA) - Junior
Ashley Courtney - Alabama (Vero Beach, FL) - Senior
Sara Dean - Auburn (Valencia, CA) - Senior
Norrelle Dickson - Oklahoma (Orange, CA) - Sophomore
Andrea Duran - UCLA (Selma, CA) - Junior
Vicky Galindo - California (Union City, CA) - Junior
Amy Harre - Southern Illinois at Carbondale (Nashville, IL) Senior
Camille Harris- LSU (Hendersonville, TN) - Junior
Alicia Hollowell - Arizona (Suisun, CA) Junior
Casey Hunter - Florida State (Millstadt, IL) - Senior
Vanessa Iapala - Oregon State (San Diego, CA) - Junior
Kami Keiter - Oklahoma (Arvada, CO) Senior
Oli Keohohou - Long Beach State (Newbury, CA) Senior
Leslie Klein - LSU (Sunrise, FL) - Sophomore
Lauren Lappin - Stanford (Anaheim, CA) - Junior
Dominique Lastrapes - Washington (Mission Viejo, CA) - Sophomore
Jodie Legaspi - UCLA (Garden Grove, CA) Sophomore
Caitlin Lowe - Arizona (Tustin, CA) Sophomore
Jessica Merchant - Michigan (Wayland, MI) - Senior
Brooke Mitchell - Louisiana Lafayette (Pasadena, TX) - Senior
Nicole Motycka - Michigan (Sarasota, FL) - Senior
Ani Nyhus - Oregon (White Rock, B.C., Canada) - Senior
Cat Osterman - Texas (Houston, TX) Junior
Jackie Rinehart - Stanford (Reno, NV) - Sophomore
Kristen Rivera - Washington (Perris, CA) - Senior
Jessica Sallinger - Georgia Tech (Kennesaw, GA) - Senior
Heather Scaglione - Oklahoma (San Diego, CA) - Senior
Jamie Southern - Fresno State (Clovis, CA) Senior
Kristina Thorson - California (Lake Forest Park, WA) Sophomore
Stephanie Van Brakle - Alabama (Chambersburg, PA) Junior
Kim Wendland - Georgia (Rock Island, IL) Senior
Veronica Wootson - Florida State (Fontana, CA)

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