FORT MYERS, Fla. – After claiming the 2012 Atlantic Sun Tournament championship, the FGCU softball team defeated No. 5 Florida, 2-1 in the NCAA Tournament last month to claim the Crons Achiever Award for its accomplishment in the month of May.
The Eagles eclipsed the other seven candidates in the poll, claiming 64 percent of the fan vote on the Atlantic Sun Insider blog to win the honor. The second-place nominee finished with 25 percent of the vote.
Playing in its first-ever NCAA Tournament, FGCU raised eyebrows when it defeated regional host and No. 5 Florida, 2-1, on May 18. A pair of solo home runs from sophomores Kirsten Bembnowski (Palm Harbor, Fla./East Lake HS) and Emily Lanier (St. Cloud, Fla./Harmony HS) and a complete game gem from A-Sun Picher of the Year Shelby Morgan (High Springs, Fla./Santa Fe HS) helped the Eagles defeat the Gators in front of a crowd of 1,345 at the Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium.
FGCU softball was the fourth Eagle squad in 2011-12 to claim an A-Sun Championship and advance to the NCAA Tournament, but the first in school history to win a game in the NCAA Tournament. The Eagles also won the A-Sun regular season and the tournament title in their first year of postseason eligibility.
The Eagles won six straight in the month of May and outscored their opponents 19-4, including two shutouts, in the A-Sun Championship. They ended the 2012 season with a 39-24 record, as their seven-game winning streak was snapped by an 8-3 loss to USF in the winner’s bracket of the NCAA Regional on May 19. In their subsequent elimination contest, the Eagles fell to Florida, 6-2.
As the Official Motivation and Apparel Brand of the Atlantic Sun Conference, Crons began sponsoring the monthly "Achiever Award" in January to recognize what A-Sun fans deem the most notable performance each month.
The Crons Brand provides what it calls “high quality motivational apparel, merchandise, and accessories to inspire people to get better and constantly strive for their goals.” It also strives to reinforce positive messages to athletes about what it takes to be a winner and the importance of working harder than anyone else in order to reach their full potential. Crons communicates this message through four separate product categories: Team Gear, Lifestyle Apparel, Nutritional Products, and School Programs. Crons is a national brand with its message-themed and motivational merchandise and apparel already in use by more than 500 schools and organizations in 25 states.
Crons perpetuates its message through its Achievers Program, designed to teach students the importance of setting and achieving goals. The program focuses on fostering skills that will help young people set smart, measurable goals now and in the future – leading to academic, personal and professional success.
The Atlantic Sun Conference is an NCAA Division I league with 10 member institutions committed to Building Winners for Life. The A-Sun meets the challenge of maintaining the highest standards in academic and athletic achievement with a true balance between student and athlete. Headquartered in Macon, Ga., the A-Sun boasts six of the top eight media markets in the Southeast. The A-Sun includes a blend of the most prestigious and dynamic private and public institutions in the region: Belmont University, East Tennessee State University, Florida Gulf Coast University, Jacksonville University, Kennesaw State University, Lipscomb University, Mercer University, University of North Florida, University of South Carolina Upstate and Stetson University. Northern Kentucky University becomes the A-Sun’s newest member on July 1, 2012.