After great outings at the Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City earlier this month, junior Michelle Moultrie and sophomore Brittany Schutte were named to the 2011 USA Softball Women’s National Team on Friday after a week-long training camp.
Senior Megan Bush and freshman Cheyenne Coyle also tried out, but did not make the 18-member team.
Moultrie and Schutte will start their new venture with the National Team on with a two-game exhibition on June 25 in Plant City. The exhibitions will continue on June 29 and July 1 before the two All-Americans see their first international competition later in the month.
The National Team will participate in the Canadian Open Fast Pitch International Championship in British Columbia from July 9-17, and the World Cup of Softball VI on July 21-25 in Oklahoma City. Both will also represent the Gators in the National Team’s attempt to win its seventh consecutive Pan American Games from Oct. 17-23 in Guadalajara, Mexico.
Moultrie’s speed will be an asset for the Americans just like it is for Florida, but the power and hitting she showed at the WCWS obviously caught the selection committee’s attention.
The junior was simply locked in all tournament long as she was named Co-Most Outstanding Player after leading all players in the field with four home runs, 13 total hits and 27 total bases. Her .542 batting average and seven RBIs were second in the field.
During the season, Moultrie shattered single-season Florida records in hits (101), batting average (.443), stolen bases (31) and on-base percentage (.519).
As for Schutte, the sophomore clean-up hitter for the Gators will be an asset to the National Team because of her intimidating power at the plate.
Schutte broke Bush’s single season home run record with 22 homers this season and her 48 walks were just one shy of breaking another single-season record.
In the WCWS, Schutte led all players with eight RBIs and was among the top five in hits, runs scored and total bases.
Florida is one of four schools represented with two players on the team joining Tennessee, Missouri and Oklahoma. Moultrie and Schutte are among six players from the Southeastern Conference, the most of any conference.
“I am so grateful for the National Team selection committee for adding Michelle and Brittany to the U.S. National Team,” Gators head coach Tim Walton said in a statement. “These two young women are great people and will represent the stars and stripes with great class and great pride.”
Gator Country reporter Safid Deen can be reached at Safid@GatorCountry.com. You can also follow him on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/SafidDeenGC.