The first week of the spring season resulted in four Union student-athletes earning ECAC Upstate New York as well as Upstate Collegiate Athletic Association “Player of the Week” honors.
The softball team, which went 5-2-1 during its week-long spring trip to Cape Coral, Florida, had senior third baseman Julie Cardettino (Niskayuna, NY/Niskayuna) pick up “Player of the Week” honors while junior pitcher Sarah Johnston (Troy, NY/Troy) earned the league's “Pitcher of the Week” award.
Junior goaltender Pat Forrest (Topsfield, MA/Governor Dummer Academy) was named the league's “Goaltender of the Week” after leading the Dutchmen to a 2-0 record while they were in Newport Ritchie, Florida.
Senior outfielder/pitcher Jay Warzala (Whitesboro, NY/Whitesboro) was voted the UCAA's “Hitter of the Week” after helping Union to a 5-4 record during their week-long stay in Cape Coral, Florida.
All four players were also named as the Upstate New York “Players of the Week” in their respective sports. Whereas the UCAA award encompasses student-athletes from the eight league members, the Upstate award embodies all the athletes from among the more than 35 Division III colleges in the Upstate region.
Cardettino, now in her fourth season as a starter, got off to a sizzling start as she collected 13 hits in 24 at bats (.542) with while driving in six runs and scoring six times. Cardettino, who came into the year with a career batting average of .324 with 39 rbis and 54 runs scored in 103 career games, had four multiple-hit games while in Florida, including two three-hit performances. Her best day at the plate came in an 8-0 victory over MIT when she belted
two singles and a double while driving in two runs and scoring twice.
Cardettino leads the league in hitting with her .542 average and is fifth in rbi (sophomore teammate Jill Ring (Brewester, MA/Nauset Regional) leads the UCAA with 11 RBI).
Johnston, meanwhile, is off to the best start in her career and leads the circuit with her 0.00 earned run average. Johnston, who has been the No. 3 pitcher behind seniors Apryle Pickering (Brandon, VT/Otter Valley Union) and Meg Crowley (Leominster, MA/Nashoba Regional), went 2-0 on the spring trip including a seven-inning one-hitter in a 4-0 victory over Upper Iowa. Johnston allowed seven hits and three unearned runs in 15 innings with eight strikeouts and six walks.
Johnston, a two-year letterwinner, came into the season with a 13-4 record and an earned run average of 3.01 with 65 strikeouts in 98 career innings.
Forrest has picked up right where he left off. The UCAA's top goaltender each of the last two seasons (and the league's “Rookie of the Year” following the 1999 campaign), Forrest enjoyed a 67.3 save percentage with a 9.00 goals against average in the wins over Tufts and Colby. He stopped 24 shots against the Jumbos and thwarted 13 attempts by the Mules.
Voted the Most Valuable Player of last year's team, Forrest has started all but one of his 26-game career and came into the season with a 66.3 save percentage and an 8.41 goals against average to go along with his 14-12 record. He is currently the UCAA's top goaltender with his 67.3 save percentage and his fourth with his goals against average. Forrest is also the key reason why the Dutchmen lead the league in Man Advantage Defense with their 90.0% average (allowing just one goal in 10 man-down situations).
Not only is Warzala leading the Dutchmen with his .560 batting average (14 for 25), he is leading the UCAA by .102. He is a big reason why Union is the circuit's top hitting team with hits .357 average.
Now in his fourth year as a starter, Warzala, last year's MVP, hit .304 and .431 (with 29 rbis and 29 runs scored) the last two years, respectively, after being used mostly as a pitcher during his freshman campaign. His 10 rbis this year are second (by one) in the league while his two round-trippers has him tied for second. Besides his hitting prowess, Warzala also picked up a pitching win in relief during the Dutchmen's 12-11 victory over Minnesota-Morris.
Warzala also played three seasons for the football team at tailback, leading the Dutchmen in rushing as a sophomore.