May 17, 2012
by Koby Padgett
COLUMBIA, S.C. - South Carolina softball's Chelsea Hawkins and Lauren Lackey garnered spots on the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) All-Southeast Region Second Team, the association announced today.
"I am glad that Lauren and Chelsea were recognized for their outstanding play amongst a very competitive region," said Gamecock head coach Beverly Smith. "Lauren had a tremendous year anchoring us in centerfield. She not only finished her senior season with the highest batting average of her career, but she sat in the top three in in the SEC for batting average all season. And I'm so glad that we will benefit from Chelsea in the lineup for two more seasons. She made huge strides offensively for us this season with some big home runs and RBI for us. Both are deserving of this honor."
The senior Lackey, who made the team as an outfielder, posted the seventh-best batting average in South Carolina history, hitting .401 in 2012. That stands second in the SEC stat rankings, while she's currently tied for first in the league and in the top 20 nationally with five triples. Lackey also dropped down nine sacrifice bunts, which ranks third in the SEC. She wrapped up her Gamecock career in the top 15 in South Carolina history in batting average, on-base percentage, triples, triples per game, stolen bases, stolen bases per game and stolen base percentage.
Hawkins, who made the second team in the designated player/utility non-pitcher slot, hit .309 for the Gamecocks and tied for second on the team in both home runs (7) and runs batted in (29). She also finished second on the squad with 13 doubles. Hawkins' sophomore year dotted South Carolina's single-season record book, ranking 12th in doubles per game, 10th in homers and eighth in homers per game.
Hawkins and Lackey become the first Gamecock duo to make all-region in the same year since Megan Matthews and Joyce McMillin were picked to the first team in 2000. The last South Carolina player to make an all-region team was Jill Semento in 2009.
Tennessee and Florida dominated the teams, with the Lady Vols landing five on the first team. Florida had three on the first team and added another on the second team. Georgia had two make both the first and the second team. North Carolina had three selections, one on the first team. USC Upstate had one first-team and one second-team selection. Florida State and Georgia Tech joined the Gamecocks with two second-team selections.
The full team is listed below.
2012 NFCA All-Southeast Region Teams
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