Rebel Foursome Earns All-MW Recognition
May 14, 2013
LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) - The UNLV softball team had four of its own earn 2013 Mountain West All-Conference Team honors on Tuesday as selected by the league's seven head coaches. Two Rebels - Stefany Valentino and Tayler Van Acker - were repeat selections from previous All-MW Teams, while Emily Haslinger and Amanda Oliveto are first-time representatives for the Scarlet & Gray.
Since the MW's inaugural season of play in 2000, UNLV has had four or more student-athletes named to the all-conference team a total of five times (2005, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2013).
Valentino was ranked in the top 10 of 11 conference-only offensive categories. She tied for the league lead in hits with 28, while placing third in batting average (.452), runs scored (14), doubles (five) and at-bats (62). She was fourth in total bases (42), fifth in home runs (three), sixth in slugging percentage (.677), seventh in plate appearances (68) and eighth in both sac bunts (two) and on-base percentage (.485). She was tops on the Rebels in batting average, at-bats, hits, doubles and total bases, but also shared in the team lead in runs (14) and home runs (three).
Not only did the junior outfielder, play well in Mountain West games, but she was instrumental offensively from the start of the season. Valentino, who reached base safely in 48 of 52 games this year, paced the team in batting average (.405), at-bats (158), runs (34), hits (64), total bases (85), slugging percentage (.538), walks (21) and on-base percentage (475). Her end-of-year batting average and on-base percentage ranked sixth and 10th best in UNLV's single-season record book.
Van Acker, a junior first baseman, was tabbed to her second All-MW Team after being chosen as a freshman in 2011. In MW play, she ranked third in runs (14), fifth in hit-by-pitch (three), seventh in on-base percentage (.492) and 10th in batting average (.388). During the 52-game regular season, she led the Rebels in hit-by-pitch 12 (a single-season best), while coming in second in batting average (.315), walks (18), on-base percentage (.440) and sacrifice flies (two). Defensively, she owned the top fielding percentage (.986) in the full season of play.
Haslinger was fourth overall in league action with a .703 slugging percentage, which was aided by six of her 19 hits going for extra bases (three doubles and three home runs). Her three homers tied for the most by a Rebel this season and the third highest in MW play. The freshman catcher's slugging percentage was the best by a Rebel during the conference season. She was second on the team in RBI (10), third in doubles (three) and fourth in both batting average (.378) and total bases (26).
Oliveto had her name listed in 10 of the key pitching categories in conference play. She ranked as high as first in appearances (15), while coming in second in starts (11) and third in both innings pitched (74.1) and strikeouts looking (14). She was fourth in wins (six), opposing batting average (.250) and total strikeouts (53), fifth in relief appearances (four) and games finished (four). She went 18-17 for the year - 6-6 in MW games - with 42 appearances, 35 of which were as starts. She tossed 229.2 innings and tallied a 2.80 ERA. She moved into the single-season record book with her starts (sixth), strikeouts (seventh: 168), complete games (10th: 25) and innings pitched (10th).
The junior hurler earned MW Pitcher of the Week on three occasions in 2013, which was the most since former Rebel Christie Robinson did the same in 2007. For her career, she has been named the conference's pitcher of the week seven times. Only Jacque Kerrigan (nine awards) and Lori Harrigan (eight) have more weekly honors for UNLV.