Katie Burkhart Named USA Softball National Player of the Week and Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week

April 17, 2007

Oklahoma City, Okla. - The Amateur Softball Association announced today the selection of Katie Burkhart (San Luis Obispo, Calif.) of Arizona State as this week's USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Week. She led her team to a perfect 3-0 record on the weekend with wins over Pac 10-foes Cal and Stanford, allowing no runs in 16 2/3 innings pitched.

The junior put on an impressive show on the mound as the Sun Devils swept Cal, 8-0 (5), and Stanford, 7-0, 8-2. In Burkhart's first outing of the weekend, she threw a dominating one-hit complete game shutout over the Cal Bears, striking out 12, and allowing only two runners to reach base all night as the Sun Devils won 8-0 in five innings. Burkhart really came out to shine in her second outing as she threw 6 1/3 perfect innings against then 12th-ranked Stanford Cardinal. A double to left that just fell fair robbed her of a perfect game, which would have been her second of the season.  She closed out the game striking out 10 Cardinal batters as ASU cruised to the 7-0 win.

 'I'm elated and it's amazing to be awarded with an honor like the USA Softball Player of the Week', said Burkhart of this honor. 'It's flattering, but I know I'm only one component of the team. If the defense wasn't as strong as they were behind me then it would be another story and same for our offense which has really came to shine this last week. I have a phenomenal team behind me, which gives me confidence on the mound that they have my back, and in turn I have theirs by playing my hardest. Everyday that I take the field with my team I have the assurance of their best effort and support, which has been epic in my collegiate career.'

She also entered the game in relief in game three of the weekend after Stanford jumped out to a 2-0 lead after three innings. Burkhart came in and shutdown the Cardinal offense as she retired the final 15 batters, striking out four to grab her third win of the weekend as the Sundevils went on to win 8-2. She compiled a perfect 0.00 ERA in 16.2 innings of work over the weekend while striking out nearly half of the batters she faced. She fanned 26 of the 55 batters she faced while holding opponents to a .036 batting average.

'Katie is a phenomenal young lady who has truly grown into one of the premier pitchers in softball. Her work ethic and drive brought her to this level of performance, while making her unflappable and composed on the mound', said head coach Clint Myers. 'Last weekend she had an outstanding week and her numbers speak for themselves. Throwing a one-hitter to both Cal and Stanford and then coming in as relief to no-hit the Cardinal, proves her talent against two solid Pac-10 schools. We're excited to see what she can become and how she can help lead this team for the remainder of this season and for her senior campaign as well.'

This is a first-time honor for not only Burkhart but also for Arizona State, which has never had a player earn Player of the Week in the five-year history of the award.

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - ARIZONA STATE junior Katie Burkhart has been named the Pac-10 Softball Pitcher of the Week for Apr. 10-16, Commissioner Tom Hansen announced today.

Burkhart was nearly perfect in the circle in three outings last week, leading the Sun Devils to a win over California and a two-game sweep of Stanford. Arizona State outscored its opponents by a combined 23-2 over the weekend, and Burkhart threw a pair of shutouts for her part.

Friday against the Golden Bears, Burkhart was simply dominant, allowing just one hit in a five-inning run-rule victory. Burkhart fanned 12 out of the 15 outs she recorded, and did not walk a single batter.

Saturday was a different game but nearly the same story, as Burkhart threw another one-hit shutout against the Cardinal, striking out 10 in a 7-0 victory. She came within two outs of a perfect game before Stanford got its lone with one out in the seventh.

Burkhart took over in relief on Sunday with the Sun Devils trailing the Cardinal, 2-1, and held them hitless over the final 4.2 innings while the offense caught up and eventually rolled to an 8-2 win.

Overall, Burkhart was 3-0 with a perfect 0.00 ERA in 16.2 innings. She allowed just the two hits, zero walks and struck out 26. Opponents batted a microscopic .036 against Burkhart on the week. Burkhart (21-8) lowered her ERA to a league-leading 0.79 and is the only pitcher with an ERA under 1.00. Arizona States career stirkeouts leader also leads the Conference with 317.

Arizona State (39-10, 5-3 Pac-10) are currently tied for second in the Conference standings, and moved up one spot to ninth in todays ESPN.com/USA Softball Top-25. They host first-place Arizona this Wednesday, then welcome the Oregon schools for three games over the weekend.

This is Burkharts sixth career Pitcher of the Week honor and third this season. It is the 50th Player/Pitcher of the Week award all-time for Arizona State.

ALSO NOMINATED: Missy Penna, STAN; Megan Langenfeld, UCLA.
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