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Watley, Hysell win Honda-Broderick Cup

UCLA softball star Natasha Watley was honored Monday as the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year, winning the Honda-Broderick Cup. 

Watley, a senior shortstop who led UCLA to the NCAA championship, will play in the Pan American Games this summer, then try out for the Olympic team that will seek a third straight gold medal in Athens next summer. 

Watley batted .440 in the Women's College World Series. For the season, she hit .481 with 10 homers, scored 64 runs and stole 35 bases. She had more than 100 hits in a season for the third time and a career average of .450, seventh best in NCAA history. 

Watley won the award over four other finalists: basketball's Diana Taurasi of Connecticut, volleyball's Logan Tom of Stanford; swimming's Natalie Coughlin of California and lacrosse's Rachael Becker of Princeton. 

The balloting involves all NCAA-member schools, with nominees selected from among 12 women chosen as the most outstanding in their sports during the school year. 

Watley is the second softball player to win the Honda-Broderick Cup and the second from UCLA: Lisa Fernandez received the award in 1993.

Pitcher Libby Hysell of Central College in Pella, Iowa, won the Division III Woman Athlete of the Year. Hysell was undefeated with a 17-0 record and 0.41 ERA while throwing 10 shutouts and combining on five others.