Three UWA softball players named all-conference

Published 8:41 am Thursday, January 24, 2013

LIVINGSTON – The University of West Alabama softball team has been picked to finish third by league coaches in the 2013 Gulf South Conference preseason poll, while outfielders Stephanie Shoup and Tamara Vickers, along with first baseman Rebecca Schick, have been named to the preseason All-GSC team.

Defending national champion Valdosta State was voted by the coaches to win the 2013 conference title, with Alabama-Huntsville and West Alabama projected to finish second and third, respectively.

“It is no surprise that Valdosta State and UAH are at the top of the pre-season voting,” UWA head coach Will Atkinson said. “With Valdosta capturing the GSC’s first national title in softball last season, I might question people’s sanity if they weren’t at the top.

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“I am not one to make predictions, but I can tell you we are committed to playing the game the right way,” Atkinson said. “We have quality players at every position and knowledgeable coaches which will give us the best opportunity for success.”

Vickers is coming off a 2012 season that earned her first team All-GSC honors. The senior from Lawndale, Calif., played in 53 games, batting .359 with six doubles, six triples and 18 runs batted in. She stole 26 bases in 28 attempts.

A senior from Oviedo, Fla., Shoup hit .354 with six homers, 15 doubles, five triples and 38 RBI in 60 games. Schick, a junior from New Orleans, La., batted .309 with 13 home runs, 51 RBI and seven doubles in 60 games.

“Each of these ladies played an important part in our success last season and have all performed well this fall,” Atkinson said. “It is always exciting to have players recognized for their individual accomplishments, but my guess is the only thing these players are concerned about is how far they can help this team go this season.”

First baseman/pitcher Ashley Osier, pitcher Sarah Ray and shortstop Michal Robinson were named to the GSC top newcomers list.

The UWA softball team opens the 2013 season Feb. 9 at Stillman College. The Tigers open at home Feb. 28 with a doubleheader against UAH.