(Photo Courtesy of Washington Athletics)
SEATTLE – After a torrid start to the 2014 season, including hitting a three-run home run in each of the Huskies first three games, junior Kylee Lahners was named USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Week, the organization announced Tuesday.
Lahners hit. 400 with three home runs and 13 RBI over five games at the UNLV SportCo Kick-Off Classic last weekend, as the third-ranked Huskies went 5-0.
“Kylee had a great weekend for us,” head coach Heather Tarr said. “She came up with some big hits in key moments. She has worked really hard this year, and we are excited to see her continue to make a huge impact. Around the country, there were a lot of great performances by other athletes. When your team performs well, it gives your players a chance to be recognized by USA Softball. We are grateful to be honored for our performance last weekend.”
Lahners opened the season on Friday by going 2-for-5, with one run scored, one home run and 4 RBI in a 7-4 win over No. 18 Baylor. Lahners, a native of Laguna Hills, Calif., hit her second three-run home run in as many games later that day in a 3-0 win against the University of San Diego. On Saturday, Lahners connected for her third three-run home run of the young season, as the Huskies defeated Arkansas, 6-1. Lahners added two RBI in a 16-2 victory over UC Davis on Sunday.
“It is definitely an honor to be recognized by USA Softball,” Lahners said. “It’s nice to have the weekend I did, but I was just out there playing the sport I love with my teammates, and things took care of themselves. The hard work and the focus I put in during the fall and practices and extra work paid off. I was just excited to start the season, and it’s great to start 5-0 with my teammates.”
Lahners leads the Pac-12 in RBI with 13, is tied for first in home runs with three, and is fourth in slugging percentage with a mark of 1.067.
Lahners is the 5th Huskies player to be named USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Week, and the first since Kaitlin Inglesby received the honor for the week of March 12 – 18, 2012. The other recipients are four-time honoree Danielle Lawrie, Niki Williams, Dena Tyson, and Inglesby.