HILLSBORO, Ore. – Led by a breakthrough performance from an outstanding freshman, Whitworth University is well-represented on the 2019 All-Northwest Conference softball team, which was released on Wednesday by the conference office.
Click here for the entire 2019 All-NWC softball team.
Drea Schwaier-Wolf is the 2019 Northwest Conference Co-Pitcher of the Year and the NWC Freshman of the Year, according to a vote of league coaches. She and Kinsey McNaught are also first team All-NWC honorees.
Six Pirates claimed second team All-NWC recognition. They are Michelle Silva, Madelyn Carlson, Maddy Thomas, Rheanne Lewis, Sara Gayer and Desi Graham. Kaylie Lowery, Morgan Portlock and Brynn Radke received honorable mention consideration.
Schwaier-Wolf (Fr., Yelm, Wash.) shared Pitcher of the Year recognition with Linfield's Shelby Saylors and became the second Pirate in three seasons to claim the Freshman of the Year award. Schwaier-Wolf went 19-4 with a 2.22 ERA in 2019. In statistics from NWC games only, on which the all-conference votes are based, Schwaier-Wolf was 13-2 with a 2.72 ERA. She had seven complete games and tossed 85 innings. Schwaier-Wolf posted the best freshman pitching campaign ever for Whitworth.
McNaught (Jr., Kaizer, Ore.), who was the 2017 NWC Freshman of the Year, earned first team All-NWC again as a junior. It is her final year as a Pirate because McNaught will graduate this May in only three years. In 28 NWC games, McNaught batted .456 with 28 RBIs. She had a .656 slugging average with nine doubles, three triples and a home run. McNaught also stole 14 bases and did not commit a single error in center field.
Silva (Sr., Aloha, Ore.) leads the half-dozen Pirates on the second team. A four-time All-NWC honoree who was first team as a sophomore and junior, Silva is at the end of a stellar career at third base. She hit .358 against NWC opponents with 20 RBIs and added four doubles, two triples and three home runs. She will retire as Whitworth's all-time leader in hits, triples and at-bats. She needs one more RBI to tie the school record for career runs driven in.
The second half of Whitworth's powerful pitching duo, Carlson went 9-3 with a 2.68 ERA in 28 NWC contests. She threw seven complete games in 75.2 innings. Carlson has won a total of 27 games over the last two seasons.
Maddy Thomas (Fr., Milton-Freewater, Ore.) is a second first-year player for Whitworth with a big first season. In 28 NWC games, the starting catcher had a league-best 11 home runs to go along with a .345 batting average. She drove in 25 runs and slugged .810 with four doubles and a triple.
Rheanne Lewis (So., Merced, Wash.) made the most of her first season as Whitworth's starter at first base. Lewis hit .391 with 21 RBIs in 28 NWC contests. She added nine doubles and three triples and stole 14 bases.
Gayer (So., San Jose, Calif.) batted .364 and drove in 31 runs in NWC play as the starting shortstop. She had eight doubles, a triple and two home runs and stole ten bases. A good defensive shortstop as well, Gayer was part of 11 double plays.
Graham (Lynnwood, Wash.) has been Whitworth's starter at second base all four seasons. She had the best offensive year of her career in 2019 with a .357 average and 16 RBIs against NWC opponents. She posted a .970 fielding percentage with only four errors and was part of 13 double plays.
Lowery (So., Morgan Hill, Calif.) was a first team All-NWC choice in 2018. She hit .368 as Whitworth's leadoff hitter in 2019 and had an on-base percentage of .419. She added ten stolen bases.
Portlock (Sr., Portland, Ore.) batted .383 against NWC foes and drove in nine runs. She had six doubles and a .433 on-base percentage.
Brynn Radke (So., Kirkland, Wash.) claimed honorable mention consideration despite only becoming a regular at designated player midway through the conference schedule. She hit .366 with four doubles, two triples and two home runs.
The Pirates are 31-11 in 2019 and will await word on a potential at-large bid to the NCAA Division III playoffs when the field is announced on Monday, May 7.