East Lansing, Mich. -- - Michigan State has placed three players on the All-Great Lakes Region team, as announced on Thursday morning by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA). Junior Lea Foerster (Portage, Mich.), and sophomore Kaitlyn Eveland (Anaheim, Calif.) were voted to the first team, while first-year player Kelcey Carrasco (Woodlake, Calif.) was a second-team pick.
The three All-Region selections is the most Spartan picks since placing four on the All-Region team in 2008, and MSU has multiple first-teamers for the first time since 2003, when four Spartans earned All-Region honors (Jessica Beech, Natalie Furrow, Brittney Green, and Sandy Lewis).
Foerster and Eveland were also All-Big Ten selections, and have helped lead MSU into the regional final of the National Invitational Softball Championship (NISC). Sitting at 33-23, the Spartans have their most wins since the 2007 season.
"This is a tremendous honor for these players, who have been such a big part of our team success all year," said head coach Jacquie Joseph, now in her 24th season at MSU and recently won her 800th career game a head coach.. "We've grown so much, and their growth has spearheaded what I believe has been our best offensive season during my time here at Michigan State. It is a team honor as well, because any recognition of individuals is also a recognition of the team's success. It has been an exciting journey, and each of them continues to improve and grow. This is so well deserved."
Eveland, who was limited to 31 as a freshman due to injury, has perhaps been MSU's most consistently improving player over the course of the season. Eveland leads the team and ranks fifth in the Big Ten with a .414 average, ranks sixth in slugging (.725) and sixth in on-base percentage (.503). She has established a single-season MSU record with 58 RBI (good for third in the Big Ten), and also ranks among B1G leaders in homers (10, tied for 10th), doubles (14, ninth), and walks (12th, 28). Her 26 extra base hits is second among the Spartans and ranks sixth on MSU's single-season list, and her 63 base hits is just outside MSU’s single-season top 10.
Foerster's batting average is .409, which is sixth among Big Ten players. She leads the league in doubles (26), runs (67), total bases (144) and hit by pitch (19), is second in slugging (.818), third in OBP (.529), third in hits (72), and sixth in RBI (49). Foerster has established new single-season MSU records in doubles (26), runs scored (70), and extra-base hits (42). Her 14 homers ranks second, 72 base hits ranks sixth, her 49 RBI is fourth, and 72 base hits is sixth.
Entering the week, Foerster ranked in the NCAA Top 20 in doubles ( first), runs per game (1.24, second), slugging pct (16th), and sixth in total bases (136). She is 20th in on-base percentage, and 36th in homers per game (0.29). Eveland is 22nd nationally in RBI per game (1.08) and 30th in overall RBI.
On the career front, Foerster is MSU's all-time run-scoring leader (158), while posting an MSU-record 53 career doubles, 86 extra base hits (second) 10 triples (tied for 10th), 23 homers (sixth) and her 195 career base knocks is tied for ninth in the Spartan annals.
Both Foerster and Eveland are making a run at joining an exclusive club of .400 hitters at MSU, which has only four members: Patty Raduenz (.422 in 1996, .414 in 1995) did it twice, while Lindsey Hansen (.404, 2011) Kylene Hopkins (.404, 2013), and Keri Lemasters (.400, 1996) are the four to have accomplished the feat. Radeunz and Lemasters are the only two Spartans to do it in the same season (1996).
Carrasco is hitting .327 on the season and ranks ninth in the Big Ten with 11 home runs. She is just the second freshman in school history to belt double-digit round-trippers. She has added five doubles and is fourth on the team with 56 base hits.
Eveland and Foerster advance to the national selection process, with All-Americans announced in conjunction with the Women’s College World Series in early June.