Sara Moulton, a senior on the Minnesota softball team in 2014, left the Gophers as one of the most decorated players in program history after helping lead to the team to its first Big Ten Tournament title in 15 years, as well as its first-ever NCAA super regional appearance. Upon completion of her collegiate career, the Eagan, Minn. native signed on to play professionally with the Chicago Bandits of the National Pro Fastpitch league. The Bandits selected Moulton with the fifth overall pick in the NPF Collegiate Draft in March. Throughout the summer, Moulton will document her first season in the professional ranks.
Updated Photo Gallery | Entry #1 | Entry #2
The past few weeks in Bandit nation have been super busy! Last week, we traveled by bus to Pennsylvania and took on the PA Rebellion in a two-game match up. We ended up splitting with the Rebellion. It was a fun trip and I got to play against some familiar Big Ten faces! Andie Varsho from Purdue and Tatum and Taylor Edwards from Nebraska are members of the Rebellion. I look forward to matching up against them and getting to spend more time with them later this summer.
We had a few days off when we returned from Pennsylvania, so a few of the girls and I decided to take a road trip to St. Louis to watch the Cardinals take on the Phillies at Busch Stadium. Estela Pinon's boyfriend, Ken Giles, is a rookie pitcher on the Phillies and hooked us up with great seats! We also got a chance to go down onto the field after the game and take some pictures (see the updated gallery).
Earlier this week we hosted two days of Bandit clinics. It was fun to have a chance to instruct and give back to the game that has done so much for us. The young girls were determined and worked hard! On Monday after the clinic, we played our second Battle of The Sexes game against The Windy City Thunderbolts baseball team. The Thunderbolts came out fired up, but ended up falling to us 8-0 and only managed to produce one hit on offense. The Bandit pitching staff dominated the boys once again!
This past Wednesday we flew to Round Rock, Texas to compete in a four game series against the USSSA Pride. We played all of our games at the Dell Diamond baseball stadium, which is home to the Round Rock Express minor league baseball team. It was a beautiful stadium and the weather in Texas did not disappoint! We ended up splitting the series 2-2 with the Pride.
It's crazy that my summer with the Bandits is already almost halfway over! I am having the time of my life meeting new people and getting to experience new things every day.
My roommate, former Big Ten/Northwestern foe Emily Allard, and I are getting along great! We have learned the past month that we have more in common than just a four year B1G rivalry. She's also learned that living with me comes with cold temperatures, as many of my Gopher teammates learned while rooming with me on the road.
Looking ahead, we have two months of jam-packed softball coming up! The next two weekends, we host the Akron Racers and the Rebellion! I look forward to playing in front of our home crowd and I am expecting to see some familiar Minnesota faces in Chicago down the road!
Here are your weekly updates on current and former Gophers playing summer ball across the country:
*Glen Perkins earned his 20th save of the season
by striking out the side in an inning of work at Texas yesterday. He know ranks
3rd in the American League in saves. The MLB All-Star teams will be unveiled July 5th, Perkins has put together a good enough season to hear his name called.
*Nate Hanson is headed to AAA, the Rochester Red Wings called the third baseman up. He has played in two games, but has gone hitless in seven at-bats.
*Alec Crawford made two more appearances for the Grand Junction Rockies. He pitched a total of 2.2 innings, allowing one earned run on four hits with a strikeout.
*In back-to-back days, Mike Kvasnicka (New Britian Rock
Cats) hit a double and drove in a run. In his past 10 games, Mike is hitting
.387 with seven RBI.
*Seth Rosin (Reading Fightin Phils) made two relief appearances, allowing a run. He is now 2-5 with a 4.91 ERA on the season, in the minors.
*Augusta GreenJackets pitcher DJ Snelten made two appearances this past week. On Friday, DJ pitched 4.0 innings allowing one run while striking out three.
Cape Cod League
*In 3.0 innings pitched, Lance Thonvold (Hyannis Harbor Hawks) struck out four batters. In 10.2 innings pitched on the season, Lance owns a 0.84 ERA.
*Thanks to a 3-for-3 effort on Sunday, Michael Handel (Madison Mallards) upped his batting average to .328.
*Dan Motl's Willmar Stingers club wrapped up the first half title this past weekend. On the season, Motl is hitting .235 with 7 RBI in 81 at-bats.
*Connor Schaefbauer (Rochester Honkers) had a nice weekend. The infielder had back-to-back three hit games on Saturday and Sunday. He is now batting .278 in 54 at-bats this season. Outfielder Jordan Smith also had a pair of multi-hit performances this week. In addition, he plated two RBI on Sunday.
*Troy Traxler played in a 15-inning affair for the Wisconsin Woodchucks on Thursday. He went 4-for-8, scoring two runs.
*Incoming freshman Alex Boxwell has 42 at-bats for his Coon Rapids Legion team. He is batting .476 with 13 RBI on the season.
Summer Roundup Archives
Gopher alum and University of Minnesota graduate Tori Dixon is making a name for herself right away on the international scene. After graduating from the Gopher volleyball team last year, Dixon signed a professional contract to play for Rabita Baku in Azerbaijan before she returned to the United States. After playing in the Pan American Cup, Dixon was recently named the tournament's best blocker.
The Minnesota Daily recently featured the Gopher alum, check out her story here.
*Glen Perkins pitched three straight games for the Twins against the White Sox. He earned two saves in a series sweep. Perkins ranks ninth in MLB in saves, and third in the American League with 19.
*Alec Crawford made his professional debut for the Grand Junction Rockies (Rookie) last Thursday. He retired all six batters he faced and struck out six, earning the save. He also pitched one inning on Sunday.
*The Gopher trio playing for the New Britain Rock Cats had an eventful week. Last week, Nate Hanson turned in two four-hit games. He went 4-for-4 with two doubles, two runs and an RBI on June 17, then hit 4-for-6 with a home run, two runs and three RBIs two days later. Mike Kvasnicka hit 2-for-3 with two RBIs on June 18, then 4-for-5 with two runs and an RBI on June 19. He hit a home run the next day. Kyle Knudson had a pair of two-hit games last week.
*Tom Windle won his latest start for the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes, allowing one run in five innings. His season ERA is 3.79.
*DJ Snelten (Augusta GreenJackets) made two relief appearances last week for a combined 3 2/3 scoreless innings to lower his ERA to 1.25.
*Seth Rosin (Reading Fightin' Phils) struck out two in an inning of relief.
Cape Cod League
*Lance Thonvold has three saves for the Hyannis Harbor Hawks. He has struck out 10 batters in 7 2/3 scoreless innings.
*Dalton Sawyer has a 0.79 ERA for the St. Cloud Rox. In his most recent outing, he pitched 2 1/3 innings in relief, giving up one hit and two walks while striking out two.
*Jake Bergren hit 2-for-4 with a run, an RBI and a stolen base last Wednesday for the Alexandria Blue Anchors. He is hitting .311 on the season.
*Connor Schaefbauer went 2-for-5 with a run, a double and two RBIs for the Rochester Honkers on Saturday.
*All-five of the Gophers' in-state incoming freshmen--Alex Boxwell, Jeff Fasching, Toby Hanson, Reggie Meyer and Luke Pettersen--earned all-state recognition from the Minnesota State High School Baseball Coaches Association. The quintet of future Gophers all played in the Play Ball! Minnesota High School All-Star Series.
*Boxwell and Hanson were Mr. Baseball finalists, and Hanson was selected as the Minnesota State High School Baseball Coaches Association's Class 2A Player of the Year.
It's time for the weekly Gopher baseball summer roundup. Selected stats and notes are below.
*Glen Perkins remains third in the American League in saves, picking up one last week to bring his season total to 17. He has 39 strikeouts to lead the Twins bullpen.
*Jack Hannahan, who started the season on the Reds' disabled list after a fall shoulder surgery, reportedly may begin throwing and hitting as soon as this week.
*In his most recent start, Tom Windle pitched seven shutout, three-hit innings to earn the win for the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes (Dodgers Class A Advanced). He struck out four and walked one. Windle's ERA is 3.93 on the season.
*Seth Rosin made three relief appearances in the past week. Two of those appearances were scoreless, and he earned one save for the Reading Fightin' Phils (Phillies Class Double-A).
*DJ Snelten made two brief appearances out of the bullpen last week, one of them scoreless. His season ERA for the Augusta GreenJackets (Giants Class A) is 1.50.
*Last week, Jake Bergren (Alexandria Blue Anchors) hit 3-for-4 with three runs and a homerun against the Thunder Bay Border Cats, and 2-for-3 with two runs and a double in a game against the Duluth Huskies. His NWL season average is up to .364.
*Troy Traxler has two three-hit games in a row for the Wisconsin Woodchucks. He is batting .324 with three doubles and a triple on the season.
*Dalton Sawyer has a 1.00 ERA and a save in nine innings pitched for the St. Cloud Rox.
*Tyler Hanson earned his first NWL win with 2 2/3 innings of scoreless relief for the Willmar Stingers against the Eau Claire Express.
*Pitcher Lucas Gilbreath, who was one of 12 Colorado high school players drafted this year, was named to the Colorado Post's All-Colorado Second Team.
*Jeff Fashcing has a 27-1 high school pitching record. He could have one more chance at a win in the Minnesota Class 2A championship game Monday.
*Toby Hanson finished his senior season with 13 home runs overall, including six during section playoffs on the way to an appearance in the state tournament.
*Hanson and Alex Boxwell were named to the Star Tribune's All-Metro Team. Luke Pettersen was named to the second team.
*Micah Coffey finished his senior season last week with a .360 average and 32 RBIs in 36 games.
*Former Gopher and MLB greats Dave Winfield and Paul Molitor were included in ESPN's list of 25 influential College World Series players. Winfield topped the list, while Molitor was ranked 22nd.
*Matt Stemper is hitting .361 with a double and a triple for the Springfield Sliders.
Summer Roundup Archives