Arizona Softball

Arizona softball: Mercado earns weekly national honor

Mo Mercado is second on the team in hitting. (Photo courtesy of Arizona Athletics)

Arizona senior shortstop Mo Mercado has been selected the National Player of the Week by CollegeSportsMadness.com.

Mercado went 11 of 13 during the five games at the Mary Nutter Invitational in Palm Springs, Calif. She had three doubles, one home run — a grand slam against Purdue — and drove in 11 runs.

The ninth-ranked Wildcats went 4-1 in the tournament, losing its final game 1-0 to top-ranked Florida State. Arizona out-hit the Seminoles 5-3 but left nine runners on base and surrendered the run with the help of a throwing error.

Mercado had two of Arizona’s five hits in the game.

After the season-opener earlier this month, coach Mike Candrea said Mercado “is swinging as well as anyone,” and she is proving him right. The senior is hitting .488 (21 of 43) with two home runs, hitting fifth in the order behind slugger Katiyana Mauga, who has seven homers.

Freshman catcher Dejah Mulipola leads the Cats in hitting with a .550 average.

Arizona (15-1) is back in action at Hillenbrand Stadium this week for a three-game series against Texas, Friday through Sunday. The Longhorns (11-5) are coached by Connie Clark, who was Candrea’s ace pitcher when he led Central Arizona College to the junior college national championship in 1984 and 1985.

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