Warwick, R.I. – May 12, 2016: The CCRI Lady Knights softball team’s season ended this past weekend in the District K Championship with an impressive 20-10 record but the Lady Knights did get some good news with seven of them making All-Region XXI honors: sophomore Meghan Rousseau (Richmond, RI), sophomore Kristina Rodriguez (North Kingstown, RI), sophomore Tri-Captain Erica Jewett (Coventry, RI), sophomore Sam Archambault (North Smithfield, RI), freshman Courtney Sheridan (Warwick, RI), freshman Maddy Cooper (Pawtucket, RI) and freshman Bella Malvinni (Westerly, RI).
Sophomore Meghan Rousseau earns All-Region XXI honors for the second time in her career. Meg spent two years batting lead-off and patrolling both left and center field for the Lady Knights over her incredible career as a freshman she batted .436 with 17 hits including three doubles and a Home Run with 11 RBIs and 22 runs scored and three stolen bases. As a sophomore she took it to another level by batting .474 with 45 hits including nine doubles, four triples and a Home Run with 23 RBI and 34 runs scored. For her career she batted .463 with 62 hits, 12 doubles, four triples and two Home Runs with 34 RBIs and 56 runs scored and 12 stolen bases. Rousseau did a little of everything hit for average, power and utilize her speed on the bases to ignite many Lady Knights’ rallies. Head Coach Liz Afonso commented about her talented sophomore “Meghan is an excellent lead-off hitter and commands center field with her quickness and speed. Her explosive speed has helped her to be a force to be reckoned with at the plate as well as on defense. We will surely miss Meg next year as she graduates and moves on to SNHU on a soccer scholarship!”
Sophomore Kristina Rodriguez is the other two-time All-Region XXI player for the Lady Knights and another mainstay at the top of the line-up for CCRI while patrolling both center and left field. As a freshman, Rodriguez batted .316 with 12 hits including four doubles and a triple with eight RBIs and 13 runs scored. Kristina far exceeded her freshman numbers with an impressive .430 batting average as a sophomore with 37 hits including 11 doubles, a triple and a Home Run with 11 stolen bases while adding 26 RBIs and a team-leading 37 runs scored. For her career she batted .395 with 49 hits including 15 doubles, two triples and a Home Run with 34 RBIs and 50 runs scored and 11 stolen bases. Rodriguez was another igniter who could get on base, generate power and or cause chaos on the base paths with her speed. Coach Afonso added about her talented outfielder “Kristina has been a huge asset at the plate this year as well as in left field. Her excellent speed and ability to read a play has been a huge asset to this team. Offensively, she has been an extremely consistent hitter this season that coupled with her speed has helped her to score many runs for the Lady Knights.”
Sophomore Tri-Captain Erica Jewett earns her first All-Region XXI honor and it was well deserved. As a freshman she batted .353 with 12 hits including a triple with 13 RBIs and 11 runs scored. When she was not playing first base or acting as designated player Jewett also pitched and had a 2-1 record with 21 strikeouts in 15 innings pitched. In her second year she was named a Captain and provided much needed leadership to a team with many freshman faces. Erica also elevated her performance by batting .475 with 28 hits including 10 doubles a triple and a Home Run with 24 RBIs and 23 runs scored. In addition in the circle for CCRI she was 1-0 with a save and though she pitched sparingly she was very effective with 10 strikeouts over eight innings and a perfect 0.00 ERA. For her career she batted .430 with 40 hits including 10 doubles, two triples and a Home Run with 37 RBIs and 34 runs scored. Coach Afonso added “Sophomore Tri-Captain who has stepped up whenever needed her to whether that be offensively or defensively. Has pitched when we needed her to despite a recurring back issue and always does what is asked of her with a smile!
Sophomore Sam Archambault also earns her first All-Region XXI honor at catcher. In 2014 Archambault played before red-shirting in 2015. In her freshman campaign she batted .379 with 22 hits including six doubles and a triple with 14 RBIs and 16 runs scored and six stolen bases. In her sophomore campaign she was the Lady Knights starting Catcher and did an excellent job calling games for CCRI which had a great deal to do with freshman Courtney Sheridan’s success in the circle. In addition, offensively she added a .292 batting average with 14 hits including a double with six RBIs and 12 runs scored and four stolen bases. For her career Archambault batted .340 with 36 hits including seven doubles and a triple with 20 RBIs and 28 runs scored and 10 stolen bases. Coach Afonso added “Sam has been with us for the past three years as she red shirted last year due to a medical reason. She stepped up again this year behind the plate as a catcher and played solidly there.”
Freshman Courtney Sheridan took little time to establish herself as one of the best pitchers in CCRI history. Sheridan established a new single season strikeout mark with an impressive 148 strikeouts in 129.2 innings pitched the same amount of innings it took Marian Long to amass 131 back in 2010. Sheridan also set the single game strikeout mark when she struck out 16 Sacred Heart batters on April 13th.the 16 K’s eclipsed the mark of 14 strikeouts shared by Marian Long who did it in ’09 and Devin Azulay who did it in ’12. Courtney was the Lady Knights No. 1 option in the circle and she flourished in that role with an impressive 14-7 record and 3.13 ERA. Sheridan is ranked No. 14 by the NJCAA in strikeouts with 148 and No. 16 in the NJCAA with 7.99 strikeouts per game. As if those numbers were not enough Sheridan also batted .395 with 15 hits including a double with six RBIs and 10 runs scored to often help her own cause in the circle. The Good news for CCRI is that Sheridan will be back in the circle next year looking to build upon her numbers and establish new pitching bench marks for the College. Afonso added “Courtney has been a huge asset to our team and well deserved as she surpassed the single season strikeout record and carried our pitching this season for the team. We are thrilled that she will be back next year.”
Freshman Maddy Cooper was another tremendously impactful freshman who led the Lady Knights with a .500 batting average what included a team-leading 49 hits with CCRI single-season record 19 doubles shattering the mark of 15 set by Steph Morse and Nicole Kufel in 2010. In addition “Tank” as she is called by her teammates added four triples and a Home Run while also leading CCRI with 33 RBI and adding 26 runs scored and seven stolen bases. Cooper batted clean-up and was very good at her job as evidence in her RBI total. Cooper recorded a hit in 25 of the 29 games she appeared as the most potent offensive threat leading the Lady Knights in batting average (.500) OBP (.505) and Slugging (.806) and will look to build upon those impressive numbers as a sophomore. Afonso added “Maddy is an excellent all around softball player. She has a very strong arm from behind the plate and plays first solidly as well. Her hitting has been an asset to our offense this year and we look forward to her great contributions next season as well.”
Freshman Bella Malvinni is the last but certainly not the least Lady Knight to earn All-Region XXI honors. The diminutive Short Stop plays much bigger than her small stature. Malvinni is a wizard in the field with impressive quickness and speed and tremendous energy. Bella began the season playing a utility role but established herself as a defensive leader and offensive stalwart. Malvinni batted .325 in her freshman campaign with 27 hits including three doubles with 15 RBIs and 22 runs scored while leading the Lady Knights with 16 stolen bases. One of the most exciting and excitable players to watch for CCRI Malvinni will look to lead CCRI from the top of the order in her sophomore campaign as her Sheridan and Cooper lead the 2017 Lady Knights squad. Coach Afonso added “Bella is an excellent shortstop whose power and strength should not be judged by her small stature. An extremely coachable player who truly understands the idea of team! We are excited about her return next year!”
The Community College of Rhode Island, New England’s largest comprehensive community college, enrolls nearly 18,000 students in credit courses and thousands more in non-credit and job training classes. Its athletic program boasts 12 varsity programs and an academic support program for all student-athletes.