OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - The Amateur Softball Association announced today the selection of Northwestern's Garland Cooper (Mission Viejo, Calif.) as the USA National Player of the Week. Cooper, a junior at Northwestern, helped lead the No. 15 Wildcats to a 4-0 start in Big Ten action this past week.
During the week Cooper hit an impressive .667 (8-for-12) with eight RBI. Seven of her eight hits went for extra bases including four doubles and three home runs for a 1.750 slugging percentage. In the opening game of Big Ten play against Wisconsin, Cooper went 2-for-3 with two doubles to become the Wildcats' career leader in doubles with 40. She now has 15 doubles for the year and is just one shy of her own single-season school record.
"This award is a great honor for our team and Northwestern," said Cooper. "We have worked very hard to prepare for the Big Ten season and to come out and execute as well as we did was great."
In game two versus the Badgers, Cooper drove in a career-best five runs with two home runs and a double in a 3-for-4 performance. She then homered and was intentionally walked during the Wildcats' closest game of the week, a 3-1 win on Sunday over Iowa. Cooper went 2-for-3 with another double and a run scored in the final game against Iowa which ended in a 12-2 Wildcat victory.
"Garland compted well in all aspects of the game this weekend," said Northwestern head coach Kate Drohan. "Her aggressiveness at the plate really set the pace for our team."
Cooper is currently on a 13-game hitting streak, both a team and season best. This is the first time Cooper has been selected as the USA Softball National Player of the Week.
The Amateur Softball Association, founded in 1933, is the National Governing Body of softball in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic Committee. The ASA has become one of the nation’s largest sports organizations and now sanctions competition in every state through a network of 87 local associations. The ASA has grown from a few hundred teams in the early days to over 230,000 teams today, representing a membership of more than three million. For more information on the ASA, visit www.asasoftball.com.
About USA Softball
USA Softball is the brand created, operated and owned by the ASA that links the USA Men’s, Women’s, Junior Boys’ and Junior Girls’ National Team programs together. USA Softball is responsible for training, equipping and promoting these four National Teams to compete in international and domestic competitions. The USA Softball Women’s National Team is one of the only two women’s sports involved in the Olympic movement to capture three consecutive gold medals at the Olympic Games since 1996. The U.S. women have also won seven World Championship titles including the last five consecutive. For more information about USA Softball, please visit www.usasoftball.com