April 1, 2014
OKLAHOMA CITY -- Tennessee senior Ellen Renfroe has been named the USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Week for the week of March 24-30, as announced on Tuesday by the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) of America and USA Softball.
"It is an honor to be recognized among so many great athletes as the USA Softball Player of the Week", Renfroe said. "I give all the credit to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who gives me the strength, talent and confidence to play each day. I also must give credit to my team and coaches who support me and give their best for Tennessee every day!"
Renfroe, who was named SEC Pitcher of the Week for the third time this season on Monday, is Tennessee's first USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Week honoree of 2014 and its first since Raven Chavanne earned the accolades for the week of March 18-24, 2013.
This week's honor marks the second time Renfroe has been named USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Week. She last received the award as a freshman in for the week of May 9-15, 2011.
Renfroe becomes just the fourth Lady Vol to earn USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Week multiple times in her career, joining Monica Abbott (four times), Tonya Callahan (two times) and Raven Chavanne (two times).
"Karen and I are extremely proud of Ellen and happy for this award," Tennessee co-head coach Ralph Weekly said. "Ellen is one of the hardest-working and most-dedicated players we have ever coached. Ellen is a gamer and brings her best to every competition."
Tennessee (31-3, 8-1 SEC) swept No. 4 Florida this weekend for the first time since 2004. The Lady Vols are the first team to sweep Florida in an SEC series since Kentucky swept the Gators in April of 2011.
Renfroe went 3-0 on the week with a pair of complete games and two shutout relief innings that earned her a win in Game 2. She posted a 0.88 ERA and 20 strikeouts over 16.0 innings against the No. 4 team in the nation.
Renfroe fanned seven and allowed just two earned runs in UT's 9-2 win over the Gators on March 28. Game 2 on March 30 was suspended to play a televised Game 3 on CSS. In game 3, Renfroe struck out 11 batters and allowed no earned runs in a seven-inning win. She threw two scoreless relief frames with two strikeouts when Game 2 resumed later Sunday afternoon as UT came back for a 7-6 win. Renfroe's 11 strikeouts vs. Florida in Game 3 marked her fifth game with 10 or more strikeouts this season.
Renfroe has accounted for all of Tennessee's wins against ranked opponents this year. She previously threw complete-game wins against No. 11/12 Nebraska on Feb. 22 and No. 13/11 Stanford on Feb. 23. Renfroe is 5-0 against ranked opponents this year with a stellar 0.70 ERA, 36 strikeouts over 30 innings, only three earned runs allowed and a .151 batting average for opposing hitters.
On the season, Renfroe is 21-0 with a 1.29 ERA and 162 strikeouts over 136.0 innings of work. She has limited opposing batters to a .167 average and leads the SEC in wins and ERA. She is tied for the league lead with 162 strikeouts. Renfroe's 21 victories are also tied for the most in the nation.