LOUISVILLE – The National Fastpitch Coaches Association announced its All-Region teams on Monday and the No. 4 Salisbury University softball team had four players picked for the Atlantic Region including three to the first team.
Senior Rachel Johnson and juniors Annah Brittingham, Kim Dorsey and Paige Knussman received the honors with the picks being repeat selections for Johnson, Dorsey, and Knussman. The accolade for Brittingham comes in her first year in maroon and gold.
Johnson claimed first-team honors for being one of the most dangerous pitchers in the nation through the regular season. This actually marks the fourth year in a row that the Preston, Maryland native has been selected for the All-Region team, being a first-team choice three times, and she becomes just the fifth Sea Gull to earn All-Region accolades in all four years in maroon and gold. This season, Johnson has posted a 24-4 record with a save and a 1.33 earned-run average while striking out 237 in 163 innings.
Dorsey and Knussman were each first-team selections in 2014, and landed on the team as at-large picks this year.
Dorsey leads the team in numerous offensive categories, including batting average, home runs, and runs scored. Her .464 batting average is among the tops in the region, while her 53 runs scored puts her in the top 15 in runs scored per game. She has belted nine home runs on the year, and sits in the top 40 in the nation in slugging percentage. Defensively, Dorsey has been a standout at shortstop for the past two seasons. This year she has a .944 fielding percentage, and has been a part of four double plays.
Knussman, Salisbury's starting first baseman throughout the year, has been an offensive force, with a .420 batting average, behind only Dorsey on the squad. She has driven in a team-high 52 runs, as her RBIs per game are in the top 10 nationally. She has scored 34 times and has the second-highest slugging percentage on the team at .697 thanks to seven doubles, a triple, and eight home runs.
Brittingham, who transferred into Salisbury before her junior year, was an at-large pick for the second team, and has been a threat both in the circle and at the plate. Brittingham was a hero in the regional championship game on Saturday, driving in the winning runs in the sixth inning to lead the Sea Gulls to a 3-2 win against Virginia Wesleyan. In 32 games, she sports a .407 batting average with 14 extra-base hits, including five home runs and 31 RBIs. In the circle, the Pocomoke, Maryland native has started 14 games with a 9-2 record and a 1.94 ERA while striking out 71 in 83 innings.
The picks bring Salisbury's program total to 103 NFCA All-Region picks in program history, including 64 first-team choices.
The Sea Gulls continue their run toward the program's first national championship with the NCAA Super Regional this weekend, hosting Christopher Newport University at the SU Softball Field. The opening game of the best-of-three series is scheduled for Friday, May 15 at 4 p.m. Games two and three, if necessary, will be played on Saturday, May 16.
To see the entire list of NFCA All-Region selections, click here.