By Chad Waller, Director of Communications and Sports Information
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Summer Leitka (pictured) of Science & Arts (Okla.) has been named the NAIA National Softball Pitcher of the Week and Kayla Ritzdorf of Midland (Neb.) has been named the NAIA National Softball Player of the Week, the national office announced Tuesday. Leitka and Ritzdorf were selected based on their performances from April 20 – 26, and were chosen out of a pool of conference, independent and unaffiliated group winners.
Softball Player of the Week
Summer Leitka, Science & Arts (Okla.)
5-4, So., P, Norman, Okla.
• Had a perfect 7-0 week for the Drovers in tossing 44.1 innings. She totaled 63 strikeouts.
• She allowed only four earned runs and eight walks.
• Broke the single-season Science & Arts strikeouts record on April 26 against Texas Wesleyan. She accomplished the feat against the second batter of the game in the 8-3 win with her 256th strikeout. Currently, she stands with 268.
• In two games, she struck out over 10 batters and broke her record for most strikeouts in a game twice in the week. Her strikeout high on the week was 14 in the 3-1 victory over SAGU (Texas) on April 25.
• In that effort over SAGU, Leitka twirled a six-inning no-hitter.
• On the NAIA statistical list, she ranks No. 1 in total innings pitched (200.00), No. 2 in wins (26), No. 4 in ERA (1.12), No. 5 in opponent batting average (0.152) and No. 8 in batters struck out per nine innings (9.38).
Softball Pitcher of the Week
Kayla Ritzdorf, Midland (Neb.)
5-3, Sr., SS, Columbus, Neb.
• During a 10-game week, Ritzdorf batted .576 (19-of-33) and reached base safely in all of those contests. Currently has reached base safely in 18 of last 19 games.
• Compiled seven extra-base hits and had 15 RBI on the week. Also, tallied nine walks and scored 13 runs.
• Went 6-for-6 in stolen base attempts and now stands 20-for-21 in that category on the year.
• Posted seven multi-hit games and now has 16 this season.
• One of her highlights was a 4-for-4 effort in a 15-1 win over Briar Cliff (Iowa) on April 25. She had a triple, scored twice and had two RBI.
• Surpassed 200 career hits – with 60 this year – to raise her season batting average to .392.
• With four doubles, she broke Midland's single-season doubles record with her 19th of the year. In NAIA statistical rankings, she stands No. 9 on the 2015 season chart.
For more information on NAIA softball, click here.
For a complete listing of all the national statistical leaders, click here.
The seventh and final NAIA National Softball Players of the Week will be announced May 5.
Player Nominees: Payton Anderson, Missouri Baptist; Amy Lokker, Tennessee Wesleyan; Nicole Larson, Menlo (Calif.); Alexa Gonzalez, Southern Oregon; Rebeka Ferguson, Saint Xavier (Ill.); Alex Springer, Indiana Wesleyan; Ryann Ferguson, Concordia (Calif.); Kasie Zukow, Evangel (Mo.); Ceara Barker, Saint Mary (Kan.); Brookelyn Visker, Indiana Southeast; Chelsea Showers, Lindsey Wilson (Ky.); Shelby Kindelin, Bellevue (Neb.); Kara Hilton, AIB (Iowa); Cejay Hilhorst, Valley City State (N.D.); McRae Cayton, Oklahoma City; Alley Benefield, Martin Methodist (Tenn.); Brittany LaCasse, Southeastern (Fla.); Camile Martin, Northwestern Ohio.
Pitcher Nominees: Taylor Winn, Lindenwood-Belleville (Ill.); Brittany Kilduff, Tennessee Wesleyan; Kimberly Wilburn, Menlo (Calif.); Mattie Boucher, Concordia (Ore.); Nicole Nonnemacher, Saint Xavier (Ill.); Hannah Klebesadel, Taylor (Ind.); Grayson Harvey, Concordia (Calif.); Sarah Leimser, Midland (Neb.); Mallorie Nelson, Baker (Kan.); Logan Davis, Friends (Kan.); Jenna Jones, Rio Grande (Ohio); Krystal Cammuse, St. Catharine (Ky.); Kelli Fisher, Bellevue (Neb.); Claudia Farrell, Grand View (Iowa); Regan Lawrence, Dickinson State (N.D.); Cassie Jones, Auburn Montgomery (Ala.); Cristina Sacramento, St. Thomas (Fla.); Bree Crampton, Madonna (Mich.).
2015 Softball Composite Award Winners (Pitcher, Player) (Complete Schedule)
Week 1 (March 24): Hannah Moak, William Carey (Miss.); Alex Springer, Indiana Wesleyan
Week 2 (March 31): Reba Depriest, Biola (Calif.); Shelby Engle, Georgetown (Ky.)
Week 3 (April 7): Ashlie Layman, USC Beaufort (S.C.); Abbey Wilmes, Grand View (Iowa)
Week 4 (April 14): Cassie Jones, Auburn Montgomery (Ala.); Erica Miller, Marian (Ind.)
Week 5 (April 21): Nicole Nonnemacher, Saint Xavier (Ill.); Tara Moates, Oregon Tech
Week 6 (April 28): Summer Leitka, Science & Arts (Okla.); Kayla Ritzdorf, Midland (Neb.)