Saint Leo, Fla. (April 3, 2007) – Former Saint Leo University softball players Desiree (Croteau) Ayo, Denyve Duncan and Katie Heintz were named to the Sunshine State Conference Silver Anniversary Softball Team, it was announced Tuesday by SSC Commissioner Michael J. Marcil. The team consisted of 31 student-athletes and one coach representing seven different SSC institutions.
Croteau was a four-time All-Sunshine State Conference selection (1998-2001), and was the Conference Player of the Year in 2000. Recently inducted into the Saint Leo Hall of Fame, she was named an All-American in 2001, and stands first in career appearances (190), innings pitched (1,141.2), victories (103) and complete games (139) in SSC. She also ranks second in the conference with 945 career strikeouts.
Duncan was the 2004 Sunshine State Conference Player of the Year and a two-time All-American selection (2002 & 2004). The second baseman holds the Saint Leo program record for most hits in a career with 269, which ranks third all-time in the SSC. Duncan also holds Saint Leo single-season record for hits with 80 in 2002.
Heintz was a two-time All-American during her career, which spanned from 2003-06. She finished her illustrious career as the Sunshine State Conference’s all-time leader in strikeouts with 1,209, which is also fourth most all-time in NCAA Division II. Her 82 career wins is third-most in SSC history and second most in Saint Leo history behind Croteau.
In addition to selecting the Silver Anniversary Team, voters also selected the top player, the top pitcher and the top coach of the SSC’s first quarter century of softball. Florida Southern shortstop Shelly Davis was honored as the top player, Barry’s Geralyn Elam was selected as the top pitcher, and Florida Southern’s Chris Bellotto was selected as the top coach.
Voting for the squad, which recognizes the Conference’s first 25 years of competition in the sport of softball, was conducted among the athletic directors at each of the SSC’s nine member institutions. Although the SSC was founded as a men’s basketball conference prior to the 1975-76 season, slow-pitch softball was added as a championship sport in the 1981-82 academic year, with the Conference adopting to fast-pitch in 1985.
SSC Silver Anniversary teams have been previously selected in men’s and women’s basketball, baseball, men’s golf, men’s tennis, men’s soccer, men’s and women’s cross country and volleyball. A Silver Anniversary Team in women’s tennis will be selected later this year.