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Little East: Four From Eastern Get Nod

Rathbun recognized for fifth straight week; Dubinsky a four-time pick

cooper_72lec_1208.jpgNORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. - Senior softball pitcher Molly Rathbun (Hebron) and junior men's lacrosse player Josh Dubinsky (Woodstock) are among four Eastern Connecticut State University athletes recognized in the Little East Conference weekly spring awards program for their play for the week ending April 22.

At right: Arielle Cooper 

Rathbun was named Pitcher-of-the-Week for the fifth straight week and Dubinsky was selected Defensive Player-of-the-Week for the third straight week and fourth time in seven weeks. Joining them were junior third baseman Arielle Cooper (Mystic), who was cited as softball Player-of-the-Week for the  second time (in three weeks), and sophomore midfielder Tyler Fresen (Newington), who received a weekly men's lacrosse honor for the first time in his career as Offensive Player-of-the-Week.

Rathbun has not been named Pitcher-of-the-Week only once this season - in the first report of the year which was conducted before the Warriors opened their season. She was recognized with a weekly award for the 18th time in her career.

Rathbun did not allow an earned run in 25.0 innings in the team's 6-0 week, striking out 38 batters without a walk and limiting opposing batters to four hits and a .050 batting average. She appeared in five games during the week, throwing shutouts in her three starts and recording four wins and a save in helping the Warriors improve their winning streak to 30. During the week, the three-time All-America and Eastern career leader in pitching wins extended her streak of innings without allowing an earned run to 42 2/3, 9 1/3 innings shy of her program record.

Rathbun's strikeouts during the week moved her to within four of 1,000 in her career.The national leader in earned run average (0.33), Rathbun is 20-1 (19 straight) with four saves and 205 strikeouts and 13 walks in 127 2/3 innings. She has ten shutouts in 16 starts. In Eastern's 10-0 conference record, Rathbun is 6-0 with a 0.34 ERA in 41 1/3 innings, 66 strikeouts and two walks.

fresen 72_7248.jpgOffensively, Rathbun also led Eastern with a .545 batting average, a 1.000 slugging average and .706 on-base percentage.

At left: Tyler Fresen 

Cooper stretched her program-record hitting streak to 23 during the week, batting .474 with six runs scored and a team-leading ten RBI.  Of her nine hits, two were doubles and two were triples as she slugged at  .789 with a .565 on-base percentage. In a 7-2 home win over Rhode Island College in the second game of a doubleheader, she gave Eastern the lead for good with a two-out, two-run singles in the fourth inning.

At third base, she also handled 16 chances without an error during the week. In 32 games this year, Cooper is batting .430  with 82 total bases and a .973 fielding average. In ten conference games, she is batting .528 and leads the team with 34 total bases and 12 RBI and is second with 11 runs scored.

Fresen contributed to ten of the team's 34 goals in a 2-0 week, both victories in Little East Conference play which moved the Warriors to within a Tuesday win over visiting Western Connecticut of clinching the No. 1 playoff seed.

Ranked second in the LEC in assists, Fresen contributed to seven of the team's goals in a 16-7 home win over UMass Dartmouth with a season-high three goals and a career-high four assists. In five LEC matches this year, has a team-high nine assists. In five conference matches this year, he is second in assist average.

As a first-year starter, Dubinsky won nearly 70 percent of his faceoffs (34-for-49) with 26 ground balls in a 2-0 week. Dubinsky won 15 of 19 faceoffs in an 18-9 LEC road win over Southern Maine, with 13 ground balls. In five LEC wins this year, Dubinski has won 71.7 percent of his faceoffs with 63 ground balls.

In 13 matches this year, Dubinsky has produced a faceoff percentage .629 and averages 11.9 ground ball, ranking second  in the NCAA in the latter category.

Ranked No. 3 in Division III with a 31-1 record, the softball teams hosts Western Connecticut State University in an LEC doubleheader Tuesday at 5 p.m. The Warriors have won a program record 30 straight and is 10-0 in the LEC with four regular-season games remaining.

The men's lacrosse team is 8-5 overall and leads the LEC with a 5-0 record. A win Tuesday night at 7 p.m. against visiting Western Connecticut guarantees the team the No. 1 seed in the LEC playoffs.



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