OSU's Julie Ward named Player of the WeekOKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – The Amateur Softball Association (ASA) of America is pleased to announce that Oklahoma State’s Julie Ward (Altadena, Calif.) was named the USA Softball Player of the Week for the week of March 1-8, where she helped lead the No. 19 Oklahoma State Cowgirls to a 5-0 record including a 1-0 victory of Bedlam rival Oklahoma. The sophomore was 6-for-12 with all hits recorded as extra base hits including a double that would put her on base to score the lone run against Oklahoma, ending a 15-game losing streak.
"I am truly humbled by this award. I never thought in a million years, with all the other very talented softball players out here, that I would be up for this award. I want to give credit to my coaches, teammates and family for their never-ending support,” said Ward. “Mostly I am really happy that Oklahoma State is finally getting the National recognition that we have worked so hard for."
Ward had at least one hit in every game last week. Her best offensive performance came against then-No. 17 Louisville on Saturday morning, when she hit an RBI double and a grand slam home run to account for all five runs batted in. She went 1-for-2 with a double and two RBI in the win over Louisville, and scored the lone run for Oklahoma State against then-No.8 Oklahoma in the victory.
"Julie has been playing well all season and has worked hard to become the player she is,” said Oklahoma State Head Coach Rich Wieligman. “I am glad to see it pay off. It is always nice to receive conference honors, but for her to receive National recognition is something that is really special."
Ward’s extra base hits included four doubles and two home runs for a .500 average. She had a 1.333 slugging percentage and with five walks, a .647 on-base percentage. Ward finished the week with 10 RBI and three runs scored.
Oklahoma State advanced from No. 24 to No. 19 in this week’s ESPN.com/USA Softball Collegiate Top 25 Poll.
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 76 local associations. The ASA has grown from a few hundred teams in the early days to over 210,000 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 eight World Championship titles including the last six consecutive as well as claimed two World Cup of Softball titles. For more information about USA Softball, please visit www.usasoftball.com.