Jan. 11, 2013
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- University of Iowa junior pitcher Kayla Massey and sophomore infielder Megan Blank have been selected to the 2013 Big Ten Preseason All-Conference First Team by College Sports Madness.
"It is a great honor to have your student-athletes recognized for their athletic abilities," said UI head coach Marla Looper. "Kayla and Megan have done great things on the field in the past, and I know they will continue to do great things in the future. Their challenge is to not rest on the accolades and awards, but to prove they deserve them.
"Softball is a team sport that relies heavily on individual performances, but without the team succeeding the individual will not be recognized. These two were chosen this preseason, but I expect others to join them and be recognized for their contributions by the end of the season."
Massey, a native of Foothill Ranch, Calif., has made 68 career appearances inside the circle, with 50 starts. A 2012 first team All-Big Ten selection, she has 27 wins and a 2.60 career ERA. Massey posted a 15-11 record with a 2.04 ERA last year, notching seven shutouts and 24 complete games in 26 starts. She had 120 strikeouts over 185.2 innings.
Blank became the ninth player in school history in 2012 to garner first team All-Big Ten honors as a freshman and ninth player in program history to earn all-region recognition as a freshman. The Culver City, Calif., native was a NFCA Second Team All-Midwest region selection. She started all 53 games at shortstop and led the team with a .390 batting average with 34 runs and 29 RBIs. Blank turned in a team-best 24 extra base hits with 17 doubles, five triples and two home runs. The 17 doubles are tied for fourth in the Iowa record books, the triples are tied for eighth and the batting average is tied for 10th.
Click HERE to see the complete Big Ten preseason all-conference selections.
Iowa opens the season Feb. 8 in Houston, Texas. The Hawkeyes face Lipscomb and UT Arlington at the Hilton Houston Plaza Classic.