Seven Big 12 softball players have been named to the 2012 NFCA All-America Team, the National Fastpitch Coaches Association announced.
Oklahoma tallied three first-team honorees, the most of any squad in the nation, and the most by a league team in Big 12 history. Missouri followed with two selections, while Texas and Texas A&M had one representative apiece.
OU's Keilani Ricketts and Jessica Shults earned their third-straight All-America distinctions, while freshman Lauren Chamberlain was recognized in her first collegiate year of play. The 2012 USA Softball Player of the Year and unanimous Big 12 Player of the Year, Ricketts, has led the Sooners at the plate and in the circle. The junior ranks 11th in the country with an on-base precentage of .558 and is 13th with an .841 slugging percentage. From the circle, she is third in the NCAA with a 0.99 ERA and third with 393 strikeouts. The southpaw has recorded 1,191 career strikeouts, putting her third on the Big 12 career list.
The Big 12 single-season record holder in home runs as a freshman, Chamberlain is second nationally with 27 home runs and 10th nationally with a slugging percentage of .869. She also was named Big 12 Freshman of the Year.
Shults continued her climb up both the Big 12 and OU career home run charts this season as she helped lead the NCAA's top home run team with 19 of its 95 home runs this year. The junior now has 53 in her career and is 13th nationally this season.
Missouri's Chelsea Thomas collects her second-straight first-team selection after finishing the year 27-9 with a 1.16 ERA. She struck out 306 batters in 229.1 innings, the second-most in a single-season at MU, while walking only 80. She set the Mizzou program record for career strikeouts and now has 942 heading into her senior season.
Ashley Fleming led the Tigers in all major offensive categories this season, hitting at a .365 clip with 16 home runs, 12 doubles and 51 runs batted in. Her career batting average (.340) is ninth-highest ever at Mizzou, while she finishes her career with 201 hits, the seventh Tiger in program history to surpass 200 hits.
Texas second baseman Lexy Bennett was honored for the first time in her career as she became the 14th Longhorn to be recognized. She wrapped up her year hitting .422, the second-highest in school history, and tallied three triples and 14 doubles with 13 home runs. Bennett now holds UT career records for batting average (.385), on-base percentage (.464), runs scored (166), hits (245), RBI (155), total bases (414) and sacrifice flies (10).
TAMU's Mel Dumezich picked up her second career All-America honor after leading the Aggies to their 11th-straight NCAA regional appearance. She recorded 307 strikeouts this season and tossed eight solo shutouts. She finished her junior campaign with a 28-13 record.
NFCA ALL-AMERICA TEAMS
Keilani Ricketts, Oklahoma, P
Jessica Shults, Oklahoma, C
Lauren Chamberlain, Oklahoma, 1B
Chelsea Thomas, Missouri, At-Large-P
Lexy Bennett, Texas, 2B
Ashley Fleming, Missouri, OF
Mel Dumezich, Texas A&M, UT/P