Softball Receives NCAA Plaque for Highest 2017 Batting Avg.

SDSU all-MW selections from last year, L-to-R: Zaria Meshack, Jenavee Peres, Katie Byrd and Molly Sturdivant (missing Sydnee Cable and Shelby Thompson).
Sept. 6, 2017

INDIANAPOLIS - The San Diego State softball team recently received a plaque from the NCAA for leading the country in batting average during the 2017 season.

The Aztecs hit a remarkable .356 for the 2017 campaign, easily outdistancing runner-up James Madison at .347. Minnesota (.342), Arizona (.341) and Georgia (.338) rounded out the top five.

SDSU’s .356 average shattered its previous best of .310, which was set in 2015. In all, San Diego State set seven school records, including batting average, on-base percentage (.418), slugging percentage (.516), hits (497), RBIs (295), sacrifice flies (23) and runs (324, tied).

Jenavee Peres (Garden Grove, Calif.) led the way last year for San Diego State, easily breaking the previous school record batting average of a .429 batting average with her .454 and tied a SDSU best with five sac flies. She also ranked second in school single-season history in slugging percentage, RBIs and OPS percentage (1.332), third in runs and total bases, fourth in on-base percentage, tied for fourth in extra-base hits (29), fifth in hits and home runs, and tied for seventh in times hit by pitch (5).

Peres was named a NFCA Second-Team All-American for her efforts, the first time San Diego State has ever had a player on the second team (Aztecs’ previous three NFCA All-America selections were third-team picks). She was also a first-team all-NFCA West Region honoree, the Mountain West Player of the Year and a first-team all-MW selection.

Joining Peres on the all-conference first team last year was Sydnee Cable (Huntington Beach, Calif.), Zaria Meshack (Vallejo, Calif.), Molly Sturdivant (Santa Ana, Calif.) and Shelby Thompson (Benicia, Calif.), who was also the MW Freshman of the Year, while Katie Byrd (Santee, Calif./West Hills HS) earned second-team all-MW accolades. Byrd, Meshack, Meshack and Taylor Stewart (Bellflower, Calif.) also earned second-team all-NFCA West Region accolades, while Cable was a third-team selection.

Byrd batted .361 with three home runs, 35 RBIs, 42 runs, 16 doubles, a .519 slugging percentage and a .428 on-base percentage, and Sturdivant batted .381 on the season with eight home runs, 45 RBIs, 25 runs, 14 doubles and 30 walks, while registering a .664 slugging percentage and a .482 on-base mark. Meshack finished the 2017 campaign with a .415 average, 34 runs, 61 hits, a .459 on-base percentage and seven stolen bases, while Stewart batted .340 with two homers, 14 RBIs, 12 runs, seven doubles and 19 walks, while posting a .462 slugging percentage and a .430 on-base mark. Thompson hit .333 with seven home runs, 31 RBIs, 26 runs, five doubles, two triples, 20 walks and six stolen bases, while posting a .556 slugging percentage and a .434 on-base percentage, and Cable batted .371 with six homers, 43 RBIs, 23 runs, eight doubles and nine walks.

SDSU finished the 2017 season with a 31-18 overall record - its 12th consecutive 30-win season - and a 15-9 mark and runner-up finish in Mountain West play. The Aztecs, however, did not receive an at-large bid into the NCAA tournament, despite finishing second in the sixth-best conference in the nation (out of 32 leagues), the 32nd-toughest schedule and a No. 45 RPI (two teams with worse RPIs were selected in No. 48 Fresno State and No. 49 Oregon State, and every team lower than SDSU got in).

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