TSWA announces weekly award winners - April 18

BASEBALL: Carson-Newman’s Kirby, Vanderbilt’s Wright garner TSWA accolades
– Carson-Newman’s Paul Kirby and Vanderbilt’s Kyle Wright were named the Baseball Player and Pitcher of the Week, respectively, by the Tennessee Sports Writers Association on Wednesday for their performances for April 10-16.

Kirby batted .400 (6-for-15) with three home runs, 12 RBIs and six runs scored in four victories for the Eagles. The Goodlettsville, Tenn., native hit a grand slam and drove in seven runs in a win against Shorter University, adding RBIs on a sacrifice fly, a single and a groundout.

The senior infielder collected a single, a walk, one RBI and two runs scored in the series opener versus Wingate College and posted a solo homer among two hits and scored twice in the second contest against the Bulldogs. Kirby provided all of the offense with a three-run homer in the bottom of the first in a 3-1 victory in the series finale, helping the Eagles sweep the series.

Kirby is batting .350 with 14 doubles, eight home runs, 37 RBIs and 41 runs scored in 38 contests this season for Carson-Newman.

Wright tossed a complete game, three-hit shutout in a 1-0 victory over Florida, striking out a career-best 13 batters in a game that took just over two hours to complete (2:12 to be exact). The Huntsville, Ala., native struck out at least one Gator in every inning and allowed three total baserunners in the contest, all in separate innings.

The righthander records streaks of 10 and 12 consecutive Florida batters retired in the victory. In two career starts against the Gators, he has allowed six hits over 18 scoreless innings with 23 strikeouts. Wright improved to 2-4 with a 3.98 in nine starts this season, tossing 52.0 innings with 55 strikeouts.

February 14 – Ryan Addington, Carson-Newman (Player); Travis Dohr, Cumberland University (Pitcher)
February 21 – Nolen Milton, Union University (Player); Evan Heffner, Maryville College (Pitcher)
February 28 – Collin Harris, Tennessee Tech (Player); Brady Puckett, Lipscomb (Pitcher)
March 8 – Wade Weinburger, Bryan College (Player); Michael Wood, Tennessee Tech (Pitcher)
March 15 – Ryan Flick, Tennessee Tech (Player); Alex Robles, Austin Peay (Pitcher)
March 21 – Austin Krajnak, Cumberland University (Player); JR Miller, Union University (Pitcher)
March 29 – Matt Jones, Tennessee Tech (Player); Trey Sledge, Rhodes College (Pitcher)
April 6 – J.P. Castaneda, King University (Player); Octavio Mirabal, King University (Pitcher)
April 11 – Ryan Kemp, Middle Tennessee (Player); Matt Ruppenthal, Vanderbilt (Pitcher)

SOFTBALL: Union’s Bennett, Carson-Newman’s Rinus named TSWA award winners
– Union University’s Emily Bennett and Carson-Newman’s Lacie Rinus were named the Softball Player and Pitcher of the Week, respectively, by the Tennessee Sports Writers Association on Wednesday for their performances for April 10-16.

Bennett batted .636 (7-for-11) with five runs scored, two triples, two RBIs and five walks in five games for the Bulldogs. The Dyersburg, Tenn., native plated the tying run with a single in the sixth and tripled and scored the winning run in the eighth in a 2-1 victory over North Georgia. Bennett singled, walked twice and scored a pair of runs in the second game against North Georgia.

The junior tripled and scored a run in the series opener versus North Alabama, tying the career mark for triples in the process with 17. She added two hits, two walks and a run scored in the second contest against the Lions and finished the weekend with one RBI in two-bats versus UNA. Bennett is batting .336 with 11 RBIs, 43 runs scored and 19 stolen bases in 46 contests this season.

Rinus won all four of Carson-Newman’s games during the week, allowing five earned runs with 26 strikeouts in 26.1 innings of work. The Murfreesboro, Tenn., native posted wins in both ends of the doubleheader against Lincoln Memorial, allowing two earned runs on four hits with seven strikeouts in a 7-3 victory before tossing 5.2 scoreless frames in a 3-2 win in the second contest.

The freshman lefthander did the same in a twinbill at Wingate College, giving up one earned run on five hits with 11 strikeouts in a 3-2 victory before going 6.2 innings in the second game, scattering 10 hits and allowing one earned run with six strikeouts.

Rinus improved to 20-5 with a 1.20 ERA in 25 appearances covering 157.1 innings, striking out 179 and allowing just 117 hits. Opponents are batting .200 against her this season.

February 14 – Lexi Cushing, Middle Tennessee (Player); Brooklin Lee, Belmont (Pitcher)
February 21 – Chelsey Deloney, Belmont (Player); McCarley Thomas, Lipscomb (Pitcher)
February 28 – Ashley Scott, Union University (Player); Mandy Jordan, Lipscomb (Pitcher)
March 8 – Morgan Brewer, Maryville College (Player); Hayley Smothers, King University (Pitcher)
March 15 – Kay Brokering, King University (Player); Nicole Blackburn, Maryville College (Pitcher)
March 21 – Jess Andree, Belmont (Player); Mandy Jordan, Lipscomb (Pitcher)
March 29 – Taylor Scott, Carson-Newman (Player); Savannah Carr, Trevecca University (Pitcher)
April 6 – Paige Robertson, Union University (Player); Lacie Rinus, Carson-Newman (Pitcher)
April 11 – Alex Richardson, Trevecca University (Player); Brooke Kennedy, UT Martin (Pitcher)