by Marianne Gasaway
Clear Lake seniors Julia Merfeld and Sara Faber have been honored as First Team All-North Central Conference selections.
Merfeld, who played shortstop for the (8-9) Lions, led the team in runs, hits and stolen bases. Her batting average ranked third on team at .452 and was .375 against conference opponents. She recorded 28 hits overall and nine in the NCC. Her seven doubles and four triples topped the team. Her on-base percentage was .469 in 17 games and .400 in NCC contests. She finished the season with 16 stolen bases; she was second in the NCC in that category with seven.
“Julia was our lead off hitter for many years and our starting short stop. She has been a leader on and off the field,” said Clear Lake Coach Austin Peterson. “She has been a part of All-Conference teams many times throughout her career and will be playing softball at DMACC next year.”
Faber, unanimously chosen as an All-NCC outfielder, also ranked among the best hitters in the NCC. She had an overall batting average of .455 and was .429 in the league. She topped her team and the NCC in RBIs with four. Faber led the conference with eight stolen bases; she had 12 in the season. She finished second in runs scored with five in the NCC and 16 in all games. Her nine hits against NCC opponents led the league; she was second on the team with 25. She led the Lions in singles with 18, six of those coming against NCC opponents. Her on-base slugging percentage of .500 overall and .478 in the NCC ranked first.
“Sara was our three hitter and left fielder. She has manned left field since her eighth grade year,” explained Coach Peterson. “She also has made First or Second Team All-Conference for many years. She will be playing basketball at Wartburg next year.”