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Softball Alumna Dana Knapp Named to National Player of the Year Watchlist

3/24/17



MCCC softball alumna Dana Knapp is a player to watch at Kean University this season.

West Windsor, N.J. -- Kean University senior centerfielder Dana Knapp, a two-year player on the MCCC softball team, is one of 50 players across the country to be named to the Schutt Sports/NFCA Division III National Player of the Year Watch List, announced by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association.

Knapp has added to an early-season resume that included being named a Second-Team Pre-season All-American by Fastpitch News. Knapp was an NCAA Division III All-American in her first season with the Cougars last year. Knapp, who transferred in for her junior season from Mercer, smashed a school-record 10 home runs in 2016. She led the NJAC with an .829 slugging percentage and finished second in the league in both home runs and RBIs (49).

Knapp led Kean in batting average (.423), slugging, on-base percentage (.503), runs batted in (49), doubles (15), home runs, total bases (103), walks (18), and was not caught in any of her three stolen base attempts. She was also First-Team All-Region, First-Team All-ECAC and First-Team All-NJAC last year.

Fifty outstanding softball players have been chosen for the 2017 Schutt Sports/NFCA Division III National Player of the Year watch list, which will be paired down in the coming weeks until just one player remains at the conclusion of the season.

Twenty-two returning NFCA All-Americans top the list, including six first-team honorees, seven second-team selections and nine from last year's third team. The remaining 23 members of the group all earned first team NFCA All-Region recognition last season.

The list is a collaborative effort between the NFCA's Division III Head Coaches and All-America committees. The list will subsequently be cut to 25 and 10, before the winner is chosen.

The list will be adjusted to assure the best players during the season are considered, with the eventual winner coming from the group of 25.

Knapp played two seasons of Mercer softball – in 2013 and 2015 – and her second year with the Vikings was simply stellar. Knapp led the Vikings in batting average (.438), slugging percentage (.813), on base percentage (.565), home runs (6), and triples (5) in 2015.  The Vikings finished the 2015 season 24-11 and advanced to the Region 19 championship game before falling to the County College of Morris. 

Knapp was selected as the 2015 Garden State Athletic Conference (GSAC) Player of the Year and was also named the Region 19 Player of the Year Runner-Up. 

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