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May 16, 2012
PARK RIDGE, Ill. - Penn State softball standouts Cassidy Bell (Bakersfield, Calif.) and Kasie Hatfield (Tampa, Fla.) were named to the All-Big Ten First Team and Second Team, respectively on Wednesday by league coaches. Bell was a unanimous selection becoming the first Penn State student-athlete on the All-Big Ten First Team since 2006 (Jenn Reynolds).
Bell was a dominant force in the Big Ten, carving up opposing hitters for a .440 average, which topped the league charts. She also ranked first in total bases (58), tied for first in home runs (6), second in slugging percentage (.781), second in hits (33) and fifth in on-base percentage (.538).
Bell, a junior centerfielder, earns her second consecutive All-Big Ten honor after her second-team recognition a year ago. She is just the eighth All-Big Ten First Team member from Penn State, all of which have been under head coach Robin Petrini's tenure. Bell also broke Penn State's single-season batting record with a .423 cumulative average, besting Nan Sichler's 24-year-old record of .413 from 1988.
Senior co-captain Danee Collett (Rogersville, Tenn.) was named Penn State's recipient of the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award. Michigan swept the individual award honors with newcomer Haylie Wagner taking home Pitcher and Freshman of the Year, while Carole Hutchins was named Coach of the Year and Amanda Chidester winning her second straight Player of the Year award.
At Saturday's team award banquet, Penn State doled out the year-end awards. Bell was honored as the team's offensive player of the year, Lauren Yao (Los Angeles, Calif.) was named defensive player of the year and team MVP, Alyssa Renwick (Laurens, S.C.) gathered most improved honors, while Ashley Todd (Mill Creek, Wash.) and Rachel Myers (Millheim, Pa.) were named Blue-White award winners for their dedication and loyalty to the PSU softball program.