College softball: Thomas, Hartman headline UMD’s NSIC all-conference recipients

Cloquet’s Bender named to second team as Bulldogs go into this week’s NSIC tournament as the No. 5 seed.

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DULUTH — Minnesota Duluth’s Jordyn Thomas was named to the first team and Christian Hartman was named Newcomer of the Year as the NSIC Softball All-Conference Teams were announced Wednesday, May 4.

Thomas, a senior first baseman from Hermantown, leads the Bulldogs in batting average (.378), doubles (15), home runs (12) and RBIs (49) going into this week’s NSIC tournament. She will graduate as UMD’s all-time home runs leader.

Hartman, a sophomore pitcher from Bettendorf, Iowa, played at Grinnell College before joining the Bulldogs, where she went 5-0 in nine appearances this season. She also notched two saves and has a 2.16 ERA.

UMD sophomore shortstop Kiana Bender (Cloquet), senior third baseman Emma Frost (Farmington, Minnesota) sophomore third baseman/designated player Elle Potts (St. Michael, Minnesota) and junior catcher Sid Zavoral (Cottage Grove, Minnesota) were named to the second team.

Fifth-seeded UMD (37-14, 22-8) opens play in the 10-team NSIC softball tournament against fourth-seeded St. Cloud State (35-16, 23-7) at noon Thursday in Rochester, Minnesota. The Bulldogs remain 10th in the third and final Central Region rankings released Wednesday and will need a strong showing in the NSIC tournament this weekend to qualify for the NCAA Division II playoffs.

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