Louisville, KY | For the third consecutive year the National Fastpitch Coaches Association has bestowed high honors to College of Staten Island shortstop Patricia Riches, awarding her with third-team All-East Region honors. The award comes on the heels of Riches being named CUNYAC Player of the Year as well as a NCAA Regional Tournament All-Star.
A junior who starred in all but one-game this season, Riches was sensational again, setting a CSI single-season record by hitting .542 this season in 120 at-bats, the fourth-highest mark in NCAA Division III, lifting her career average to .514, also a CSI best. Riches also led the team this season in hits (65), runs scored (38), doubles (13), triples (4), and RBI (38). She also led the way in slugging percentage at .817, and finished second on the team in home runs with four and stolen bases with eight.
Riches finished the 2019 campaign as hot as a pistol, hitting safely in the last seven games of the season, among them three CUNYAC Postseason games and two more as part of the NCAA Division III National Championship Tournament in Union, NJ. In fact, Riches hit safely in all but three games in 2019, scoring multi-hit games in 22 contests last season, far and away the best mark on the team.
For Riches, the accolade means a lot, especially coming from the NFCA. “It’s a really great feeling, especially knowing that coaches who may not know me personally or play against me think enough of me to recognize me in this way,” said Riches. “I know it’s rare when someone from a CUNYAC school can get recognized nationally and so to be picked out from so many deserving players is really exciting.”
The Dolphins finalized their season 18-17 this year, winning the CUNYAC title for the seventh year in a row and advancing to the NCAA Tournament for the 12th time in program history. “We accomplished a lot this season. As a young team we really relied on our freshman to carry us and they did,” Riches noted. “We had a lot of injuries and I think we went farther than most people expected and we battled till the end. I don’t care where you play, when you can win seven championships in a row, it’s really amazing.”