Top 10 Finalists announced for 2012 Player of the Year Award

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Amateur Softball Association (ASA) of America announced today the Finalists for the 2012 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year, which will be announced at the opening of the 2012 NCAA Women’s College World Series (WCWS) in Oklahoma City. Due to a tie, 11 individuals are being honored on the list below. This award, which is considered the most prestigious honor in Division I women’s collegiate softball, is designed to recognize outstanding athletic achievement by female collegiate softball players across the country.

Now in its 11th year, previous recipients of the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award are UCLA catcher Stacey Nuveman (2002), Texas pitcher Cat Osterman (2003, 2005 and 2006), Florida State pitcher Jessica Van der Linden (2004), Tennessee pitcher Monica Abbott (2007), Virginia Tech pitcher Angela Tincher (2008), Washington pitcher Danielle Lawrie (2009 and 2010) and Stanford shortstop Ashley Hansen (2011).

This year’s finalists are comprised of five seniors, three juniors, two sophomores, and one freshman. The student-athletes selected represent nine NCAA Division I universities and six athletic conferences. California and Oklahoma lead the way among universities with two athlete representatives each.

The three finalists selected from this list will be announced May 23, while the winner of the 2012 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Award will be revealed on May 29 prior to the start of the NCAA WCWS in Oklahoma City.

The USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award is voted on by coaching representatives from 11 Division I Conferences in the 15 ASA Regions as well as members of the media who consistently cover Division I Softball across the country, and previous Player of the Year recipients.

2012 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Finalists 
Name (School) – Year – Position – Hometown

Valerie Arioto (California) – Senior – Utility – Pleasanton, Calif.
Katelyn Boyd (Arizona State) – Senior – Shortstop – Phoenix, Ariz.
Lauren Chamberlain (Oklahoma) – Freshman – Infield – Trabuco Canyon, Calif.
Raven Chavanne (Tennessee) – Junior – Third base/Outfield – Thousand Oaks, Calif.
Jolene Henderson (California) – Junior – Pitcher/First base – Elk Grove, Calif.
Michelle Moultrie (Florida) – Senior – Center field – Jacksonville, Fla.
Sara Nevins (South Florida) – Sophomore – Pitcher – Pinellas Park, Fla.
Christi Orgeron (ULL) – Senior – Outfield – New Orleans, La.
Sara Plourde (UMass) – Senior – Pitcher – Bristol, Conn.
Keilani Ricketts (Oklahoma) – Junior – Pitcher – San Jose, Calif.
Jackie Traina (Alabama) – Sophomore – Pitcher/Designated player – Naples, Fla.

In addition to bestowing the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award, ASA/USA Softball is now in its 10th season of presenting the ESPN.com/USA Softball Collegiate Top 25 Poll and the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Week, which are announced Tuesdays during the regular season.