Trio of Softball Players Named All-Conference
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - Senior shortstop Liz McKewon, sophomore catcher Amy Baker and freshman pitcher Becca Changstrom of the Creighton softball team have been named to the 2011 All-Missouri Valley Conference Second Team as voted on by league coaches and announced at the pre-tournament banquet Wednesday night. Baker is a repeat all-conference honoree, following her first team recognition as a freshman, while the all-MVC nod is the first in McKewon's career.
McKewon led the Bluejays with a .310 batting average in conference play, while her overall average of .286 this season is a career best. The senior has been a starter all four years of her Bluejay career, making 199 starts in 202 appearances, including 35 starts at shortstop and 16 at third base this season. In addition to her career-best batting average this season, the Rosemount, Minn., native also has career highs in hits (42) and RBI (13). McKewon is hitting a team-best .381 in her last 14 games.
Baker leads the MVC with 18 home runs this season, the second-best single-season total in school history and the third-highest total in MVC history. The Bluejay catcher already ranks fourth in CU history with 33 career homers and with 18 long balls this season is one of only two Valley players with two seasons of at least 15 home runs. A two-time MVC Player of the Week this season, she leads the team with 33 RBI, 29 walks and a .648 slugging percentage - which ranks second in the MVC. The Omaha Westside product tied the school record by hitting three home runs in one game against Campbell on March 11, hitting five home runs in two games that day.
Changstrom is 17-10 with a 2.02 ERA and 168 strikeouts in 166 innings pitched as a freshman. The right-hander accounted for 11 of CU's 12 wins in Valley play and pitched in every Bluejay conference win this season. The rookie leads the MVC with a .174 average against this season. She has thrown eight shutouts, five coming in Valley play. Changstrom tossed three straight shutouts and went 25.1 straight innings without allowing a run from March 12-19. The Lincoln Southwest graduate ranks ninth in single-season CU history with 168 Ks.
Sixth-seeded Creighton (24-27, 12-12 MVC) will open play at the State Farm MVC Tournament on Thursday at 1:30 pm against No. 7 seed Wichita State (20-36, 12-14 MVC). Should the Bluejays win in the single elimination tournament, they would return to the field at 6:30 pm against No. 3 seed Southern Illinois (35-16, 17-6 MVC). Missouri State is playing host to this year's tournament at Killian Softball Stadium in Springfield.