West Windsor, N.J. - Mercer County Community College (MCCC) freshman shortstop Paige Metz earned Player of the Week honors from the Garden State Athletic Conference on April 30.
After riding the highs and lows of the regular season, Metz and the Lady Vikings finished the year in top form.
The softball team won five of their last six games, including four straight victories, to finish the season 26-18. This marks the 15th straight season the Lady Vikings have posted a record over .500, a feat that dates back to Head Coach Ryan Zegarski’s first year at the helm in 2005.
“We went 5-9 through our first 14 games this season but the team really locked in after our trip to South Carolina,” Zegarski said.
After returning from the Fast Pitch Dream softball tournament in Myrtle Beach in March, the Lady Vikings only dropped nine games while winning 21 through the rest of the season. Metz put the punctuation mark on a hard fought season on April 25, when she hit for the cycle against Rowan at Gloucester. She notched a single, double, triple and home run to usher Mercer to an 8-3 win.
Her stroke of good trips to the plate haven’t been a fluke. Through a team-high 147 at bats, Metz boasts a team-best .442 batting average. Her slugging percentage is even better at .707, bolstered in part by her 17 doubles, five triples and four home runs this season.
On the national stage Metz still holds her own. In the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Metz is ranked in the top-20 in doubles (16th) and triples (17th) with 17 and five respectively. Her fielding is also noteworthy as she ranks 12th in the country in double plays (10).
“Paige came to Mercer as a first team all-league catcher from Neshaminy (high school), so we expected her to be a valued contributor,” Zegarski said. “Seeing her develop into a talented shortstop has been great for our team.”
Metz and the Lady Vikings will return to the field on Saturday May 4 in the Region 19 semi-finals against the County College of Morris. The single elimination game will be hosted by the college and is set to begin at 10 a.m.