Smith Named MVC Softball Player of the Week
ST. LOUIS -- Missouri State senior softball player Jessie Smith has been named the Missouri Valley Conference’s Player of the Week for the period March 23-29, the league office announced Monday (March 30). Smith batted .600 with a homer and four RBIs last week to help the Bears notch their fifth win in their last six games with a pair of road victories.
Smith’s week included a 4-for-5 performance in the Bears’ 13-8 win at Kansas (March 24), in which she drove in three runs and came within a home run of hitting for the cycle. She followed up that effort with a homer in her first at-bat against Wichita State (March 26), breaking her own school record with the 25th long ball of her career. In the nightcap of the doubleheader with the Shockers, the Bears’ shortstop walked and singled in her first two plate appearances to extend her hit streak to five games and help MSU score four times in the first two innings of an eventual 5-0 victory.
The Blue Springs, Mo., continued her assault on the Missouri State record book last week, moving up the charts in seven offensive categories. Most notably, Smith bested her own career marks in home runs (25), slugging percentage (.563) and total bases (306), and also moved into second place on MSU’s career runs scored list (117). She needs just six more runs to reach Kate Madden’s all-time mark of 123. Additionally, Smith’s homer against Wichita State on Thursday moved her into a tie for 12th on The Valley’s career home run list, matching four others.
The MVC Player of the Week honor is the second of Smith’s career and the first for a Bear since she earned the award on April 30, 2007. Smith joins junior pitcher Lauren McGinley, who was named MVC co-Pitcher of the Week on March 2, on the Bears’ list of weekly conference award winners in 2009.
The Bears (14-13, 4-4 MVC) will be back in action Thursday (April 2) when they host SIU-Edwardsville in a 4 p.m. game at Killian Softball Stadium.