The trio of rookies that will vie for the National Freshman of the Year award have been announced; Oregon's Jenny Lilley; Alabama's Alexis Osorio; and Oklahoma's Paige Parker will vie for the trophy.
All three of the finalists earned outright or shared their conference's Freshman of the Year honors, and any or all of the trio could also be looking at All-American honors in their immediate future.
Lilley, the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year, earned first-team all-conference honors thanks to her .441 batting average and .550 on-base percentage. She led the Ducks in four offensive categories, she knocked six home runs over the fence and drove in forty-four runs. She registered a .947 fielding percentage with just six errors at the hot corner.
Osorio earned the SEC's Freshman of the Year honor, as well as first-team all-conference honors for herself. 19-7 on the year, she posted a 1.43 ERA and 194 strikeouts, both numbers that rank third in the conference.
Paige Parker is a name that many softball fans will already know, thanks to the four perfect games she twirled this season. The quartet of perfection made her just the third player in Division 1 history to accomplish the feat. The Big 12 Pitcher of the Year in addition to sharing co-Freshman of the Year honors, she led the conference with a 1.49 ERA and opponents hit just .169 against her. She recorded 211 strikeouts to go along with a 27-5 record. She is no easy out on offense either, hitting "just" .406 with nine home runs and forty-two RBI.
The winner of the National Freshman of the Year award will be announced on May 26th.
This is only the second season the Freshman of the Year trophy has been given out; last season, Tennessee's Annie Aldrete and Auburn's Kasey Cooper shared the inaugural award.