April 20, 2004
OKLAHOMA CITY -
Arizona's centerfielder Caitlin Lowe was selected by the Amateur Softball Association as the National Player of the Week for April 12-18. She led the Wildcats to a 3-0 weekend performance with two wins over No. 4 California and one against No. 10 Stanford.
"This is really an honor to be associated with all the other players who have received this award throughout the season," Lowe said. "We had a good weekend showing the versatility of our team coming out strong against Stanford and keeping the momentum high and then having to battle from behind against California."
"This is quite an honor for an outstanding young lady," Arizona acting head coach Larry Ray said. "She really makes this team go with her offensive abilities. She is very deserving and had a great weekend against some outstanding teams."
Keeping the No. 1 Wildcats perfect at 7-0 in Pac-10 play, Lowe recorded a .545 batting average over the weekend and was instrumental in every game. The 5'5" left-handed slapper from Tustin, Calif. connected on 6 of 11 at bats, four of which were infield base hits. She was responsible for five of Arizona's 13 runs and has totaled a team high 65 for the season.
In the opening contest against Stanford, Lowe recorded a perfect 3-for-3 day with three runs scored and a walk in the 8-0 victory. On Saturday against the Cal Bears, the outfielder led off the eighth inning of a 0-0 tie with her eighth double of the season before a home run from Mackenzie Vandergeest captured the 2-0 win.
In the final match up over the Bears, the game remained tied up into the top of the eighth when Lowe reached on a fielder's choice with two out. A base hit followed by a walk put the speedster on third before she scored on a wild pitch to give the Cats the eventual 3-2 win.
"Caitlin is definitely key to our offense this year," Ray said. "When she gets on base, we are successful in scoring. She can do a combination of things and sets the table for us in the lead off position. She possesses tremendous quickness."
The honor is the second for the Cats this year. Sophomore pitcher Alicia Hollowell earned the award in March after winning five games at the Kia Klassic in Fullerton, Calif.
Lowe, Hollowell and sophomore leftfielder Autumn Champion are all among 25 finalists for the USA Softball Player of the Year award, which will be given at ceremonies in Oklahoma City in May during the Women's College World Series.
Arizona, 43-1 and the No. 1 ranked team for the past five weeks, travels to Oregon this weekend for a game Friday at No. 15 Oregon State and games Saturday and Sunday at No. 14 Oregon.