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This Week In Fastpitch

UIC'S McGOVERN RETIRES: University of Illinois at Chicago Head Softball Coach Mike McGovern has announced his plans to retire from coaching at the conclusion of the 2001 season. He will continue to be a part of the university as an assistant professor in the kinesiology department. He has been a coach and tenured professor within the UIC Athletic Department since 1965, where he started as an assistant coach for the UIC football team. UIC will honor McGovern by making Sunday, April 29, "Mike McGovern Day" as the Flames' battle MCC rival Butler in a league doubleheader at 2:00 p.m. at Flames Field.

ORANGE'S BROWN TIES NCAA D-I "K" RECORD: Syracuse junior pitcher Heather Brown struck out a school-record 21 batters to lead the Syracuse softball team to a 1-0, nine-inning victory versus in the first game of a doubleheader versus Colgate in Syracuse on Tuesday, April 10. Brown's 21 strikeouts equals the largest total in NCAA Division I history in a game that lasted nine innings or less. California's Michele Granger struck out 21 in a seven-inning game versusCreighton April 22, 1991. The NCAA record is 26 strikeouts set by Cleveland State's Amy Kyler versus Illinois-Chicago in a 16-inning game on May 3, 1997. Brown's performance is also the best in NCAA competiton since Kyler set the mark. The righthander struck out at least one batter in every inning, including setting down the side in four frames. Brown held the Red Raiders hitless through seven innings, but a one-out double in the eighth broke up the no-hit bid. It was Colgate's only hit of the game.

UTC'S MARTIN TIES NCAA HOMER MARK:University of Tennessee at Chattanooga freshman Jolene Martin tied an NCAA Division I record with three home runs in a game, a 10-0 six-inning win over Samford on April 10. Martin hit two solo shots and a 3-run blast. Chattanooga set a school and Southern Conference record with six home runs in the game. Beth Alexander scattered three hits for her 18th win of the season. UTC established a new school and Southern Conference winning streak with its 16th straight victory.

THE BASH SISTERS: Mesa State broke the NCAA Division II single-season home run record Saturday when junior leftfielder Stacey Dutkiewicz belted a two-run homer in the bottom of the second inning in the Mavericks' 10-1 victory over Nebraska-Kearney. Dutkiewicz's home run was No. 78 for Mesa State, eclipsing the record of 77 set by Alabama-Huntsville in 1999. What makes Mesa State's record amazing is the Mavericks had played only 36 games when they broke the home run record. Alabama-Huntsville had hit 77 home runs in 74 games. Mesa State is averaging over two home runs per contest this season. One week earlier against Montana State-Billings, Mesa State tied the Division II single-game home run mark, becoming the fourth team to hit six home runs in a game. Mesa State leads virtually every major offensive statistical category in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, including team batting (.391), slugging pct. (.741), hits (394) and runs scored (350).

TRIPLE PLAY: Florida State's 5-4 win over  Florida Atlantic on March 7 was preserved by a game-ending triple play by the Seminoles. FAU had the bases load with none out when second baseman Kristin Gonzalez flied out to FSU right fielder Jessica van der Linden, who then threw home to Kimmy Carter, who tagged out pinch runner Jamie Sawyer trying to score on the play. After Carter applied the tag at home, she threw down to shortstop Natalie Bennett at second to nail FAU freshman Annie Norton trying to advance from first on the throw home to complete a 9-2-6 triple play.

TERPS DOMINATE GMU TOURNEY: A weekend of nearly flawless softball for Maryland concluded with a Jenn Shellhammer 2-0 shutout of the host school as the Maryland softball team (31-13) captured the George Mason Spring Clash title. Maryland's senior hurler took tournament MVP honors, striking out eight Patriots to cap the Terps* 5-0 tournament slate and now school-record 10 game win streak. The Terrapin pitching staff did not allow a single run all weekend, while Maryland's bats amassed 45 hits in the five games and outscored opponents 35-0.

ALL-STAR STAFF: All four of the coaches on the St. Cloud State University (MN) softball staff gained All-Conference honors as college players. Head Coach Paula U*Ren was an All-North Central Conference and All-America selection at Augustana College (SD), while assistant coach Laura Simenson was an All-Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference pick at Loras College. Stacey Schoenrock and Stacy Witters were both All-NCC selections during their playing tenure at St.Cloud St.

MIXED EMOTIONS: On a day in which Simpson College retired former All-American Kelly Schade-Fry's uniform number 11, Buena Vista became the first Iowa Conference team to sweep a doubleheader from the Storm since 1996. The Beavers won the opener 3-1 and took the second game, 1-0. The last IIAC to sweep the Storm in a conference doubleheader was Central College, which defeated the Storm by the same scores, 3-1 and 1-0.

ALL NIGHT LONG: Seven hours and 28 minutes after the first pitch of the first game was thrown Tuesday night at the NU Softball Complex, Nebraska completed a sweep of Brigham Young. The Huskers defeated BYU 4-1 in the first game after weathering a two-hour, 45-minute rain delay following the third inning. After several NU players spent the better part of the delay raking and scooping up water off the field, Nebraska went on to defeat the Cougars, 4-3, in game two. "First we couldn't get the tarp on the field, then we couldn't get it off the field because there was so much water on it," NU Coach Rhonda Revelle said. "After a while, it was like, 'What's the point?' But we felt responsible to do anything we could to get those games in because BYU traveled here for a midweek game. We also don't like to let too many days go by without playing. It's a crazy game sometimes, but we love it."

MILESTONE: Eureka College (IL) head softball coach Karen Sweitzer recorded her 200th win on Thursday, March 29, in a doubleheader sweep of her alma mater, MacMurray College (IL). Sweitzer joined the Eureka College faculty and coaching staff in the fall of 1990 after five years as a teacher and coach at MacMurray. Since coming to Eureka, Sweitzer has been promoted to Associate Professor, has served as the chair of the Education Division, and was the 1996 recipient of the Helen Cleaver Award for excellence in teaching.

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