Morgan Zerkle the 2016-17 Conference USA Female Athlete of the Year.
June 30, 2017
IRVING, Texas – The accolades continue to pour in for 2017 Marshall softball senior Morgan Zerkle as she was named the Conference USA Female Athlete of the Year, the league office announced Friday.
Zerkle is the third-straight softball player, and sixth overall since 2007-08, honored by C-USA. The previous softball winners are 2016 Florida Atlantic pitcher Kylee Hanson, 2015 WKU pitcher Miranda Kramer, 2012 UTEP slugger Camilla Carrera, 2009 East Carolina pitcher Toni Paisley and 2008 Houston pitcher Angel Shamblin. Zerkle is the first athlete from Marshall, male or female, to be honored.
The Milton, W.Va., native helped lead the Thundering Herd to one of the most successful seasons in the history of the program. Marshall won a team-record 42 games and won the Conference USA Regular Season title going 20-4 in conference action. Marshall returned to the NCAA Regional tournament with an at-large berth and the Herd ended the 2017 season ranked 24th overall in the final USA Today/NFCA Coaches Top 25 poll.
Zerkle led the team in batting average (.476), hits (79), doubles (13), extra base hits (28), total bases (131), slugging percentage (.789) and on base percentage (.508). She was second on the squad in runs scored (48) and stolen bases (39).
The senior shortstop finished tied for second in the country in batting average and 11th in stolen bases per game (.76). By the end of the season, Zerkle was Marshall’s all-time leader in batting average (.451), stolen bases (162) and triples (14). She finished second all-time in hits (289) and runs scored (181).
The USA National Team member was named C-USA Player of the Year, a finalist for USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year, Senior CLASS Award First Team All-America, Co-SIDA Academic All-America, NFCA Mideast All-Region First Team, a second team NFCA All-American selection and was drafted by the Scrap Yard Dawgs of the National Pro Fastpitch League.
Zerkle is currently with the USA Women’s National Team as the squad just wrapped up a trip to Sendai and Yokohama, Japan, for the USA vs. Japan All-Star Series. Team USA lost the three game series 2-1. Zerkle was 1-for-2 with a run scored in USA’s 5-4 game two win. Team USA now sets it sights on the World Cup of Softball XII with select games on ESPN.