May 17, 2006
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
Last week Atlantic Coast Conference coaches took notice of three Florida State University softball players by selecting them for First-Team All-ACC honors. On the Wednesday (May 17), coaches in the southeast recognized those same three as Natasha Jacob, Yuruby Alicart and Veronica Wootson were named First-Team Louisville Slugger/NFCA All-Southeast Region.
“This is a great honor for the three of them, it’s very deserving,” FSU head coach Dr. JoAnne Graf said. “Natasha, Yuruby and Veronica have been our most consistent performers the entire year and we wouldn’t be where we are in the postseason without them.”
Florida State was behind only Georgia – where the Seminoles will travel this week for the NCAA Tournament Regional – for the most First-Team selections. The Seminoles had as many First-Team picks as the rest of the ACC teams combined and exceeded all state schools, including Florida. The All-Region selection now puts the trio in the running for All-America honors.
Since the NFCA broke the selections down into first and second teams, the three First-Team selections is the second-highest total in school history, trailing only the 1985, 1993 and 2004 squads. The Seminoles have had three First-Team honorees 10 times, including this season.
This is the second All-Region honor for Jacob (Coppell, Texas), following a Second-Team accolade in 2004. A two-time, First-Team All-ACC selection, she currently leads the league with 88 hits and is second with a .383 batting average. The senior outfielder has also been recognized for her work in the classroom this year with her third CoSIDA/ESPN The Magazine First-Team Academic All-District award. Jacob currently ranks sixth in ACC history with 265 career hits and eighth at 68 stolen bases.
Two years ago Wootson (Fontana, Calif.) became just the fifth FSU freshman to ever earn First-Team All-Region honors. The junior infielder has regained that form with her second All-ACC award thanks to one of the top all-around performances in the league this year. She is just one double, one triple and four home runs from being the only player in the league with double digit numbers in all three categories. Wootson is second in the country with nine triples and currently sits eighth in ACC lore, four in FSU history with 18 career-triples.
Even though she’s only been at Florida State a year, Alicart (Maracay, Venezuela) has had an immediate impact on the team. At the ACC Tournament she reset school single-season marks with her 11th home run and 18th double. She’s three back of Jessica van der Linden’s RBI record of 55.Alicart was the best hitter during ACC games with a league-best .441 average.
“They’ve come through with key plays at key times both offensively and defensively,” Graf added. “They’ve been a big part of our success so far and will continue to be a big part of our success in the future.”
Florida State opens its 19th appearance in the NCAA Tournament on Friday (May 19) at 5 p.m. when it takes on Coastal Carolina in Athens, Ga.