Nelson Named Patriot League Softball Pitcher and Rookie of the Week
WORCESTER, Mass. – Freshman Kelly Nelson of the Holy Cross softball team has been named both the Patriot League Pitcher and Rookie of the Week, as announced by the league Tuesday.
This is the first time Nelson has received a weekly award from the league, although she did receive an honorable mention earlier this year on Feb. 19 after her first week of collegiate gameplay. It is the first time a Holy Cross student-athlete is being honored since Taylor Wahler received the Player of the Week award in 2017. Nelson is the first Crusader Rookie of the Week since Wahler in 2016 and the first Pitcher of the Week since Michelle Greene in 2003.
In just her third career start, Nelson pitched a complete 16 innings in a 2-1 win over Jacksonville on March 6. She set new program and Patriot League records with 27 strikeouts, one shy of the NCAA record of 28 that was initially set in 2004 and then tied again in 2006. Also on the day, Nelson surrendered only seven hits while giving up zero earned runs.
Then, on March 9, Nelson threw a two-hit complete game against Chattanooga in which she struck out eight and allowed only one run. Earlier on the same day, she threw a perfect two innings in relief against Western Michigan where she struck out one and gave up zero hits, walks, and runs.
Overall on the week, Nelson appeared in six games, starting three, went 29.1 innings and allowed 18 hits, eight earned runs, 10 walks, and struck out 44 while posting a 1.91 earned run average. On the season, Nelson owns a 1.54 ERA in 45.1 innings over eight total appearances and five starts. She has struck out 63 and opponents are batting just .182 against the freshman.
The Crusaders are back in action this weekend at the St. John’s Invitational with their first game coming on Saturday, March 16 against Wagner at 10 a.m.