Plain progresses to top ten in NCAA Player of the Year race

Credit: Scott Eklund / Red Box Pictures

Plain progresses to top ten in NCAA Player of the Year race

Gabbie Plain and her Washington Huskies teammate Sis Bates have been named among the ten candidates for USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year.

This is the first time a Husky has been one of the final ten candidates since 2010, when Danielle Lawrie earned her second consecutive Player of the Year award. Lawrie is the only Husky ever to earn the national Player of the Year award, doing so in 2009 and 2010.

Plain has made her way into the final 25 candidates for Player of the Year in back-to-back seasons and now makes her first appearance in the final ten. This year, Plain has five more wins than any other Pac-12 pitcher and 70 more strikeouts. She leads the Pac-12 in K/7 as well at 11.32, two-tenths of a strikeout more than second-place Rachel Garcia of UCLA. Plain started the year 23-0, the longest undefeated start by a pitcher in Husky history.

Twelve times in Plain’s 25 starts she has struck out double-digit batters. She has held the opponent scoreless in 18 of her 32 appearances and has allowed multiple runs just eight times. Plain is currently fourth in Husky history in strikeouts and eighth in wins despite starting at least 35 fewer games than every Husky ranked ahead of her. She started 2021 with a perfect game, joining Lawrie as the only Huskies ever to throw perfect games in the season opener.

Bates has been among the final 25 candidates for Player of the Year in each of the last three years. This season, Bates is one of just four players in the Pac-12 hitting over .400. She is second in the conference in hits, triples, and stolen bases, and is first in runs. Earlier this year, Bates became just the third Husky ever to record 300+ hits in their career and now has 303 in her career, just 15 away from the all-time Husky record.

The candidates for Collegiate Player of the Year will be whittled down to three on Wednesday, May 19. The winner of the award will be announced on June 1 at the Women’s College World Series.

Plain will join the Australian squad in Japan to continue Olympic preparations before a final team is selected on July 2.

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