AKRON, OH – Two recently signed Racers’ pitchers, Sara Groenewegen (Minnesota) and Megan Betsa (Michigan), were named NFCA Division I All-Americans on Wednesday afternoon. The players were among fifty-five student athletes to be named All-Americans this year.
After leading the Golden Gophers from the circle during the 2017 season, Groenewegen makes her third appearance as an All-American, for a second straight year on the first team. She finished her best season this year with an ERA tying second in the NCAA (0.63), 307 strikeouts, a 31-4 record, and .143 opposing batting average. The two-time Big Ten Pitcher of the Year’s 1,214 career strikeouts give her the record for the most in Gopher history. From Minnesota, Groenewegen is one of two players this year to be named to an All-American team.
“You’re so wide-eyed, and you have no idea what to expect,” commented Groenewegen on her transition to the professional level. “It feels like freshman year again, honestly. It’s definitely an eye-opening experience.”
As the 2017 NCAA strikeout leader with 412 on the season, Betsa was named a second team All-American for the third time. She is the fifth pitcher from the Wolverines to gain this many recognitions as an All-American. The pitcher finished her final season with a career best ERA (1.40), along with a 25-10 record and .148 opposing batting average. During her career at Michigan, the two-time Big Ten Pitcher of the Year was the first player from the program to record three 300 strikeout seasons. Betsa joins two other Wolverine players as an All-American this year.
During this season, the Racers’ will look to utilize Groenewegen and Betsa as an advantage in the circle. With the All-American pitchers on the roster, Akron enters the season with rookie talent and enthusiasm in pursuance of the 2017 Cowles Cup.
About the Akron Racers: The Akron Racers, headquartered in Akron, OH, are the oldest existing team in the National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) league. The Racers will celebrate their 16th season of play in 2017. The Racers competed in the Women's Pro Softball League (WPSL) for two seasons in 1999 and 2000 and in the NPF since 2004. Historic Firestone Stadium is home to the Racers and numerous amateur events at all levels of play.
About National Pro Fastpitch (NPF)
National Pro Fastpitch (NPF), an Official Development Partner of Major League Baseball since 2002, provides elite female athletes with an opportunity to pursue a professional career in diamond sports beyond their collegiate success. The NPF affiliate teams consist of the Akron Racers, Beijing Shougang Eagles, Chicago Bandits, Scrap Yard Dawgs, Texas Charge and USSSA Florida Pride for the 2017 season. National Pro Fastpitch players hail from the United States, Australia, and Canada, among which are the most accomplished and talented athletes in the sport of women’s softball.