March 17, 2014
NEW YORK, N.Y. - For the second-straight week and third time this season, sophomore pitcher Kate Poppe (Downingtown, Pa.) lands her name on the BIG EAST Honor Roll, as announced by the conference offices Monday afternoon.
"I always believed Kate would be one of the best pitchers in the conference, so to be recognized for the third time this season confirms my beliefs," head coach Maria DiBernardi said. "Kate has been a dominant force on the mound every time she is out there. We are just a very young team that needs to give her some run support to form a little breathing room."
Poppe has been overpowering opposing teams all season, holding hitters to a BIG EAST best .156 batting average and 1.34 ERA. She has 105 strikeouts, third best in the conference.
The team ace finished 1-1 this weekend and earned her first save of the year Sunday against Delaware. In a shutout victory over Robert Morris, Poppe allowed four hits in six innings and fanned eight batters.
Despite adding a loss against the Colonials on Sunday, the Downingtown, Pa. product was just as good in her seven innings of work. She struck out five and surrendered one unearned runs on two hits with the first base hit coming in the bottom of the seventh.
The sophomore relieved starter Kaity Sitzman for 1.2 innings to secure the win against Delaware. Poppe gave up one hit and no runs during the save situation.
"The maturity and knowing how to pull out the close ones will come, I am confident of that. We are growing with each game and doing a lot of good things," DiBernardi added. "This team with Kate on the mound can rise to the top! Conference games start on Saturday and we leave our youth behind on Friday. We are ready!"
BIG EAST Player of the Week
Kaitlin Fitzgerald, St. John’s, Fr., 3B
BIG EAST Pitcher of the Week
Becca Changstrom, Creighton, Senior, P
Weekly Honor Roll
Ashley Beza, St. John’s, Senior, P
Kristin Gutierrez, Butler, So., P/OF
Megan Hyson, Georgetown, Junior, P/UT
Ali Lenti, DePaul, Junior, OF
Kate Poppe, Villanova, Sophomore, P