Softball Names 2009 Award Winners At Annual Banquet

HAMDEN, Conn. - Quinnipiac University softball head coach Germaine Fairchild has announced the recipients of the 2009 season awards. The team held their annual banquet on Saturday, Oct. 17, and named Heather Schwartzburg (Mission Viejo, Calif.) the team's Most Valuable Player, Christine Bourdeau (Seymour, Conn.) the Offensive Player of the Year, Katie Allendorfer (Glenside, Pa.) the Defensive Player of the Year, Emily Bellush (Newton, Mass.) the Most Improved Player and Kelly Wall (Westport, Conn.) the Spirit of the Bobcat award.

"The banquet gave us a great opportunity to recognize the hard work and resulting achievement of our top five performers on the field," said head coach Germaine Fairchild. "We look forward to continuing this tradition, as our younger players aspire to be recognized for meeting the standards set by this year's honorees."

Schwartzburg dominated from the circle for the Bobcats last season, and was named the Northeast Conference Rookie of the Year after spending most of the season atop the conference pitching categories. The freshman finished the season with a 1.68 ERA in 35 appearances in the circle. She picked up 15 wins on the season with five shutouts, holding opposing batters to a league-low .196 batting average. The right-hander also set a Quinnipiac Division I record with her 206 strikeouts, besting Krista Seeman's 122 strikeouts in 2007.

Bourdeau remained the Bobcats' most reliable offensive contributor last season, starting all 48 games as the lead-off hitter. The shortstop led the team in batting average (.355), hits (55), runs (27), doubles (10) and slugging percentage (.439). Bourdeau drove in 14 RBI in the 2009 season, and led the team in stolen bases with 20 in 24 attempts.

Allendorfer started 47 games behind the plate for Quinnipiac, recording a team-high of 295 put-outs. The catcher also compiled a .994 save percentage, making just two errors on the season. Allendorfer was also a strong offensive contributor, leading the team in RBI (31) and homeruns (7). She recorded a .227 batting average on the year.

Bellush served double duty for the Bobcats in 2009, both pitching and playing first base. The left-hander appeared in 17 games from the circle, pitching five complete games. She compiled a 4.32 ERA while striking out 61 batters. Bellush also was a force at the plate, ranking second on the team in batting average (.282), hits (41), RBI (23), homeruns (4), and slugging percentage (.437). The senior also put up great numbers in the field, posting 112 put-outs with 37 assists and a .980 fielding percentage.

Wall was the first-ever Quinnipiac softball player to receive the Spirit of the Bobcat Award, presented to the student-athlete who transcends athletic performance achievement, going above and beyond in the classroom, in the community, in a leadership role, and in her daily interactions with all those she comes into contact with. Wall is serving her second consecutive season as captain for the Bobcats, and started all 48 games for the Bobcats last season. Wall also excels for Quinnipiac in the classroom, posting a 3.96 GPA as a Mathematics major.

The softball team will kick off their 2010 spring schedule on Feb. 20 when they travel to Farmville, Va. to play in the Longwood Lead Off Classic.