by Alan Hoskins, KCKCC
Three Kansas City Kansas Community College Blue Devils have been named to the All-Jayhawk Conference softball second team for 2019.
Sophomore Britney Smith and freshmen Hannah Redick and Devin Purcell were chosen to the second team in a vote of Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference (KJCCC) coaches who could not vote for members of their own team.
KCKCC finished sixth in the Jayhawk with a record of 12-8 and will take a 36-18 overall record into the NJCAA DII Region VI playoffs against Hesston Saturday at 10 a.m. The District D games are being played at Hummer Park in Topeka.
One of six sophomores on this year’s squad, Smith started in 52 games at second base for the Blue Devils. A .323 hitter, Smith had one home run, five triples and four doubles while driving in 33 runs.
Second on the team in stolen bases with eight, she also struck out only 11 times in 127 times at bat, the fewest by any Blue Devil starter. Defensively, Smith had a .978 fielding percentage, committing just four errors in 178 chances while leading the team in double plays with five.
A shortstop from Shawnee Mission North, Redick takes a team leading .392 batting average into the regional playoffs.
The team leader in hits (74) from the leadoff position in the batting order, Redick led the team in doubles (17) and homered twice while driving in 37 runs. Second in slugging (.513) and on base percentage (.431), she has a .916 fielding percentage.
Purcell anchored the Blue Devil outfield from centerfield where she had just one error in 70 chances for a .986 fielding percentage.
Third in hitting with a .361 average, Purcell was second in hits (61) with 10 doubles and 17 RBI. A freshman from Eudora, Purcell led the Blue Devils in stolen bases with 14.
Cowley sophomore Ashton Friend, who hit a robust .602, was named Most Valuable Player while Hesston pitcher Chelsea Smith was named Freshman of the Year.
Smith, who will be on the mound against KCKCC Saturday, has a 20-4 record with a 2.08 ERA. One of those four losses was to KCKCC 4-0. Hesston’s Andrew Sharp was named Coach of the Year.
Highland, one of three co-champions, dominated the 12 member first team with four selections while the other co-champions, Johnson County and Hesston, had only one pick each. Cowley had three selections and Fort Scott, Allen County and Allen County one each.