Solid hitting performance earns Holly Murray ASA JO Player of the Week honors
OKLAHOMA CITY — Holly Murray (Carbon Hill, Ala.) and her performance at the plate was the driving force behind White Lightning 98, earning her the 13th ASA Junior Olympic (JO) Player of the Week award, presented by Worth Fastpitch and StudentSports.com. Announced today by the Amateur Softball Association (ASA)/USA Softball, the utility player had a batting average of .667 (18 for 27), with three home runs and 12 RBI in the ASA 16-Under Southern National Championship in Clinton, Miss. this past weekend.
“She’s really worked hard, and the tournament before this you start to see things come along, and then this week she exploded,” said White Lightning 98 coach Jay Waters. “It’s just fun to watch. We were talking about it at practice – we've had practice a couple times since then – and we talked about how fun it was just to watch it happen. It was just one of those things where someone was on fire like that, and you just want them to bat every inning just to see what they’re going to do.”
Half of Murray’s 18 hits were for extra bases, as she added six doubles to her three homeruns. The uncommitted 2016 graduate also had a slugging percentage of 1.222, and she scored 14 runs to help White Lightning 98 finish seventh.
“She really works hard at everything she does in softball,” added Coach Waters. “In particular she’s really worked hard on her hitting. I know she’s spent the time that we have in practice, plus time with her dad each week. It’s really been something she’s worked hard on. In the two years she’s been with me, she’s really come along. She started with a lot of natural ability, but she’s really worked to improve it and make the most of it.”
Established to recognize JO players 18 years or younger for outstanding play in an ASA/USA sanctioned event, the ASA/USA Softball JO Player of the Week will honor 14 athletes, male or female, from May 9 - August 8 following the conclusion of the ASA/USA JO National Championships. Nominations will be taken on a week-by-week basis (see below schedule) and will be submitted and accepted through http://www.studentsports.com/softball/2014/02/12/asa-player-week-form/ until noon ET every Tuesday. In order to be eligible for the award, athletes must be registered with their local ASA/USA association and must have participated in ASA/USA Softball sanctioned events or tournaments during the week nominated.
ASA/USA Softball JO Player of the Week award schedule
Week 1 (April 30 - May 6): Faith Willis (Liberty, Mo.) - Originals-Shanks
Week 2 (May 7 - 13): Allie Roberts (Rogers, Minn.) – Northwest Diamonds
Week 3 (May 14 - 20): Jordyn Kadlub - Tampa Mustangs
Week 4 (May 21 - 27): Lauren Mathis (Windermere, Fla.) – Windermere Wildfire
Week 5 (May 28-June 3): Mackenzie Dixon (Huntsville, Texas.) – Huntsville Heat
Week 6 (June 4 - 10): Lauren Gohacki (Finleyville, Pa.) - Pittsburgh Diamond Stars 14U
Week 7 (June 11 - 17): Avery Winchell (New Cumberland, Pa.) - Columbus County Magic Red 12U
Week 8 (June 18 - 24): Morgan Hirai (Pasco, Wash.) - Tri-City Fuzion 12U
Week 9 (June 25 - July 1): Sydney Hoffman (Lewisburg, Pa.) – PA Power Elite 12U
Week 10 (July 2 - 8): Jaycie Cline (East Moline, Ill.) – Quad City Lady Hitmen 12U Red
Week 11 (July 9 - 15): Haylee Petre (Atlanta, Mo.) – Velocity 12U
Week 12 (July 16 - 22): Hannah Newton (Peachtreee City, Ga.) – GA Power DeMarini Gold
Week 13 (July 23 - 29): Holly Murray (Carbon Hill, Ala.) – White Lightning 98
Week 14 (July 30 - August 5): Winner announced August 8
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 165,000 teams today, representing a membership of more than 2.5 million.
For more information on the ASA, visit http://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 nine World Championship titles including the last seven consecutive as well as claimed six World Cup of Softball titles. For more information about USA Softball, please visit http://www.usasoftball.com.