Kearns, Gray Earn Weekly America East Softball Honors
Krista Kearns earned the first America East Player of the Week award of her career.
Ashley Gray was tabbed America East Pitcher of the Week for the first time.
Boston-UMBC sophomore right fielder Krista Kearns (Santa Fe Springs, Calif./Santa Fe) was named America East Co-Player of the Week, and junior Ashley Gray (Pasadena, Md./Northeast/Delaware State) was tabbed Pitcher of the Week for the week ending April 15, the conference announced Tuesday.
Kearns led the Retrievers to a perfect 6-0 week with a team-best eight hits and .571 average (8-for-14). She belted three home runs, a double and a triple for 20 total bases and a 1.429 slugging percentage, and she drove in seven runs.
Kearns hit two homers and drove in three against Albany last Monday, then went 2-for-2 with a double in the first game against Binghamton on Wednesday. She continued her torrid hitting against Vermont on Friday, going 3-for-3 with a three-run homer, and she had a hit in nine of her last 10 at-bats spanning four games at that point. Finally on Sunday, Kearns drove in the winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning with a walk-off triple.
The Player of the Week award is the first of Kearns’ career, and she is the second consecutive Retriever to garner the accolade, as junior center fielder Kali Shirk earned the honor last week. In all, three Retrievers have been named Player of the Week this season, as Gray earned the award on March 26. Kearns shares the award this week with Boston University shortstop Melissa Dubay.
Gray was outstanding on the mound last week, posting a perfect 4-0 record and a microscopic 0.25 ERA with 27 strikeouts in 28.0 innings of work. She allowed just two runs (one earned) on 14 hits and eight walks, holding opposing batters to a .149 average, and she pitched four complete games. Gray has not allowed a run in 21 consecutive innings spanning four games.
Gray went the distance in a 6-2 victory over Albany last Monday, allowing one earned run while striking out seven. She pitched a two-hit five-inning complete game in the first game against Binghamton on Wednesday, then started the nightcap, going two innings and striking out three without allowing a run. Against Vermont on Friday, Gray threw another two-hit shutout, striking out four and walking none in seven innings of work. In the final game against the Catamounts on Saturday, she struck out 11 in seven innings, giving up three hits and walking two in another shutout. Gray struck out the side in the second and third innings, and at one point nine consecutive outs were recorded by strikeout.
The Pitcher of the Week award is the first of Gray’s career, and she is the second Retriever to garner the honor, joining freshman Amanda Fefel, who earned it on March 26.
Kearns, Gray and the Retrievers return to action Tuesday, when they host local rival Towson in a doubleheader beginning at 2:30 p.m. at UMBC Softball Stadium. The team hosts Delaware in a twin bill on Wednesday, also beginning at 2:30 p.m.