PAWTUCKET, R.I. – The Little East Conference announced its 2017 Softball All-Conference Teams and Major Awards as voted on by the eight LEC head coaches. For the first time in the history of LEC softball, there was a four-way tie for first place between Eastern Connecticut State, Plymouth State, Western Connecticut State and the eventual LEC tournament champions, UMass Boston.
UMass Boston's sophomore catcher, Roxanne Vento was named the 2017 LEC Player of the Year following her dynamic season at the plate for the LEC champions Beacons. Vento becomes the first-ever Beacons softball student-athlete to win LEC Player of the Year honors. Vento dominated at the plate all season long as she led the Little East in six difference offensive categories, including a .440 batting average. Vento also led the conference with 55 hits, 18 doubles, 20 extra base-hits, 79 total bases and a .493 On-base-percentage. Vento, last season's rookie of the year, also finished second in the Little East with 39 runs-batted-in and placed fourth in the conference with a .632 slugging percentage. Vento's prowess at the plate and her ability to manage the Beacons' pitching staff, helped lead UMass Boston to its first-ever Little East Conference championship and a first-ever share of the 2017 regular season title.
UMass Boston's success is also attributed to the success the 2017 LEC Pitcher of the Year, Jess Greenspan had in the circle this season. Greenspan, a freshman from Rocky Hill, Conn. led the conference in fourth major pitching categories, including a conference best 19 wins. Greenspan also placed first among all LEC pitchers with 21 complete games, 174.2 innings pitched, three saves in 31 total appearances. Greenspan also finished second behind Keene State's Molly St. Germain (110) with 105 strikeouts on the season and placed inside the top-5 with a 2.32 earned-run-average. Greenspan recorded a save in the first game of the LEC championship to force a deciding game in which Greenspan tossed a completed game to secure the Beacons' first-ever LEC title. Greenspan becomes the first-ever Beacons' pitcher to be named LEC Pitcher of the Year.
Western Connecticut State's freshman Charline Plasczynski (Bristol, Conn.) was named the 2017 LEC Rookie of the Year, becoming the first Colonials' student-athlete to win the honor since Sarah Zaslaw won the award in 2001. Plasczynski led the Colonials in nearly every major offensive category in 2017 and was the Little East Conference RBI champion with 41 runs-batted-in. Plasczynski finished second in the Little East in slugging percentage (.670%) and placed third in the conference with five home runs as well as third in the among LEC student-athletes in on-base percentage (.477%). During the 2017 campaign, Plasczynski recorded 46 base hits and finished with a fourth-best batting average (.400) in the LEC. Plasczynski helped the Colonials gain a share of the Little East Conference regular season championship for the first time since 2003 when the Western Connecticut State finished 10-4 in LEC play.
For the second time in his career, Plymouth State's head coach Bruce Addison was named the 2017 LEC Coach of the Year by his peers. Addison and his Panthers finished with a 23-17-1 (8-6 LEC) record and was one of the four teams to claim a share of the 2017 Little East Conference regular season championship. Addison and the Panthers exceeded preseason expectations when the Panthers were selected to finish seventh of eight in the LEC Preseason Poll in which five programs earned first-place votes.
2017 Little East Conference Softball
Offensive Player of the Year
Roxanne Vento, Sophomore, UMass Boston
Pitcher of the Year
Jess Greenspan, Freshman, UMass Boston
Rookie of the Year
Charline Plasczynski, Freshman, Western Connecticut
Coach of the Year
Bruce Addison, 14th year, Plymouth State
All-Little East First Team
Pitcher Jess Greenspan Fr. UMass Boston
Pitcher Molly St. Germain So. Keene State
Catcher Roxanne Vento So. UMass Boston
First Base Allison Pillar Sr. Southern Maine
Second Base Kayla Votto Sr. Keene State
Third Base Shae Crosby Jr. Keene State
Shortstop Mary Caron Gr. Southern Maine
Outfield Brooke Cross So. Southern Maine
Outfield Cassidy Emerson So. Plymouth State
Outfield Nicole McSweeney Fr. UMass Dartmouth
Utility Amber Kelly Jr. Southern Maine
Designated Player Jenny Galavotti Sr. Keene State
All-Little East Second Team
Pitcher Madison Greene Fr. Southern Maine
Pitcher Hannah Smith Jr. UMass Dartmouth
Catcher Emma Simmons So. Rhode Island College
First Base Gina Georgetti Sr. Eastern Connecticut
Second Base Tori Dugan Jr. Western Connecticut
Third Base Mel Goss So. Plymouth State
Shortstop Charline Plasczynski Fr. Western Connecticut
Outfield Gia Raczkowski Sr. UMass Boston
Outfield Alexandra Lafemina Sr. Western Connecticut
Outfield Jessica Seymour Jr. Eastern Connecticut
Utility Mel Goss So. Plymouth State
Designated Player Kristyn Ryan Sr. Eastern Connecticut