Saturday March 30, 2013Florida Softball's Kelsey Stewart Named to 2013 USA Softball Junior Women's National Team Roster
Oklahoma City, Okla.
Oklahoma City, Okla.
Gator freshman starting second baseman Kelsey Stewart (Wichita, Kan.) is one of 17 athletes across the country selected as a member of the 2013 USA Softball Junior Women’s National Team, announced by the Amateur Softball Association of America and USA Softball.
Stewart and the JWNT will prepare for the July 1-7 International Softball Federation (ISF) X Jr. Women’s World Championship (19 & U) with a series of exhibition games in Glenville, W.Va., on June 24 before heading to Brampton, Ontario, Canada, for the July championship event.
“We are so proud of Kelsey and excited for her to represent our team and the Gator Nation as a member of the USA Junior Women’s National Team; representing your country is a great honor,” Florida head coach Tim Walton said. “She’ll represent both Team USA and the University of Florida with class and pride.”
Stewart joins seven other current and former Gators who have represented, or tried out to represent, the Red, White and Blue on either the Women’s National Team or Junior Women’s National Team, as 2012 Gator grad Michelle Moultrie (Jacksonville, Fla.) is currently a member of the Women’s National Team.
Stewart can look to current sophomores Lauren Haeger (Peoria, Ariz.) and Jess Damico (Gray Summit, Mo.) for advice and guidance, as the duo helped lead Team USA to the 2011 Junior World Championship in Cape Town, South Africa. Haeger tossed the Junior World Championship Gold Medal Game in December 2011, allowing just five hits, while fanning eight batters – including the last two – as the Red, White and Blue defeated Japan to earn the USA’s second-consecutive Junior World Championship Title.
Stewart has had a stellar first season donning the Orange and Blue, as the first-year Gator paces the SEC and country with her single-season school record six triples. Stewart leads the Florida squad with her .392 clip, 49 hits and 26-27 stolen bases. The dynamic infielder has seven doubles, six triples, three homers and entered this week ranked ninth in the nation in triples per game and15th in stolen bases. Stewart additionally ranks second in the SEC in hits and stolen-base attempts this season.
In her first career game as a Gator against Creighton Feb. 8, Stewart ripped a triple at the Kajikawa Classic for her first career hit – and UF’s first hit – of the 2013 campaign. For her season-opening efforts, Stewart was named the Feb. 11 SEC Player of the Week. She leads the Gators with 14 multiple-hit games, has had multiple-RBI efforts on six occasions this season and strung together a team-best 10-game hit streak from the end of February to beginning of March.
Stewart came to Florida as the No. 2 recruit in the country on ESPN’s Top 100 and was the 2010 Kansas Softball Gatorade Player of the Year.
Tairia Flowers (Tucson, Ariz./head coach Cal State Northridge) will lead the Red, White and Blue into the summer as the USA looks to defend the World Championship Gold Medal. Four-time Olympian Laura Berg (Corvallis, Ore./head coach Oregon State), Trisha Ford (Fremont, Calif./head coach Fresno State) and Lisa Dodd (San Diego, Calif./head coach at UNLV) will also join the USA Softball Junior Women’s National Team coaching staff in Ontario.
2013 USA Softball Junior Women’s National Team Roster (USA Softball Release)
Ali Aguilar (Orangevale, Calif./All-American Sports Academy)
#Erin Gabriel (Poland, Ohio/Gold Coast Hurricanes/Tennessee)
Andrea Hawkins (Bay City, Texas/Texas Impact Gold/Alabama)
Cheridan Hawkins (Anderson, Calif./Sorcerers Gold/Oregon)
Sierra Lawrence (Snellville, Ga./Atlanta Vipers/Michigan)
Haley McCleney (Morris, Ala./Gold Coast Hurricanes/Alabama)
Danica Mercado (Temecula, Calif./SoCal Athletics/Oregon)
Jessica Plaza (Huntington Beach, Calif./SoCal Athletics/Stanford)
Erin Shireman (Pearland, Texas/Texas Impact Gold/Texas)
Lee Ann Spivey (Palm Coast, Fla./Gold Coast Hurricanes/South Florida)
Lauren Young (Anaheim, Calif./Batbusters/Arizona)
Paige McDuffee (The Woodlands, Texas/Texas Impact/UCLA)
Sierra Romero (Murrieta, Calif./Batbusters/Michigan)
Mysha Sataraka (Honolulu, Hawaii/Kaikamahine/UCLA)
Kelsey Stewart (Wichita, Kan./Wichita Mustangs/Florida)
Emily Crane (Troy, Mo./St. Louis Chaos/Missouri)
Jailyn Ford (Hot Springs, Va./Williamsburg Starz Gold/James Madison)
*Nancy Bowling (Simi Valley, Calif./Batbusters/Arizona)
*Kelly Hanzel (Houston, Texas/Texas Impact)
*Erica Nunn (Apex, N.C./Wagoners Gold/South Florida)
# Member of 2011 Junior Women's National Team