UVU softball: Robinson, Mills named GWC player and newcomer of the year

By Kellen Hiser

For the Deseret News

Published: Thursday, May 31 2012 12:38 p.m. MDT

NAPERVILLE, Ill. -- Utah Valley slugger Amanda Robinson was named Great West Conference Player of the Year, while pitcher Tiffany Mills earned Newcomer of the Year honors as the GWC announced its 2012 All-Conference Softball Team on Thursday. The All-Conference selections were made by the league coaches and feature seven Wolverines on the first and second team lists.

Head coach Todd Fairbourne was named GWC Coach of the Year for the second time after leading UVU to a 33-26-1 record and its first-ever GWC Tournament championship. Fairbourne first received the award in 2010, while in 2011 he was named Pacific Coast Softball Conference Mountain Division Coach of the Year.

The Wolverines topped the conference in first team selections as second basemen Jessica Uresti, shortstop Krystin Jachim, outfielder Kylee Brinkerhoff and utility player Jamie North joined Robinson and Mills on the first-team. Catcher Deianna Russell received second team honors.

This is the second consecutive year that Robinson and Russell have been All-Conference selections.

A native of Lakewood, Calif., Robinson pieced together a stellar sophomore campaign for UVU in 2012. The outfielder broke the single-season school record in home runs with 13 and was named Top Player at the GWC Tournament after hitting .500 with two home runs and four RBIs over five games to lead the Wolverines to the conference title. For the year, Robinson hit .301 and led the conference in home runs (13) and total bases (105). She was also second in the conference in RBIs (40), triples (3), runs scored (34) and slugging percentage (.597).

Mills, a junior transfer from Louisiana-Monroe, made an immediate impact in the circle for UVU, breaking numerous school records in 2012. She now holds school marks in wins in a season (18), saves (8), innings pitched (234.1), appearances (48), games started (37), complete games (26), shutouts (4), ERA (2.57) and strikeouts (162). The Riverside, Calif., native went 18-17 on the year, and her eight saves were good for third in the nation.

Dana Elsasser of Nebraska-Omaha was named Pitcher of the Year to round out the conference awards. The sophomore from Hershey, Neb., went 13-9 on the season with a 1.07 ERA.

2012 All-GWC Teams

Kellen Hiser is sports information assistant at Utah Valley University. For more information on Wolverine athletics, visit WolverineGreen.com.

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