Boston High School: Emma Mendoker

Former Massachusetts Gatorade softball Player of the Year award winner and Amherst-Pelham standout Emma Mendoker is returning home, the Daily Hampshire Gazette's Jim Pignatiello reports today.

After an injury-shortened freshman year at East Carolina, the hurler plans to transfer to UMass-Amherst.

Menoker is recovering from surgery on her pitching arm, after suffering a torn biceps tendon at the start of the season. She will join former Amherst teammate and fellow ESPN Boston All-Stater Quianna Diaz-Patterson (who was recently named Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Year) with the Minutemen.

ESPN Boston's MIAA Softball All-State Team

July, 1, 2011
7/01/11
10:31
AM ET
STARTING ROTATION – FIRST TEAM
All-StateAli Maloof, Sr. P, Norwood

The senior captain led the Mustangs to the D1 South finals with a 12-1 record and 0.59 ERA with 162 strikeouts in 82 innings. The Southern New Hampshire commit also hit .493 out of the leadoff spot for Norwood.
All-StateEmma Mendoker, Sr. P, Amherst
The Gatorade Massachusetts Player of the Year finished her high school career with 1,002 strikeouts, including 300 this season. The East Carolina commit went 23-2 leading the Hurricanes the D1 state final while posting a 0.17 ERA. She also batted .461 with three home runs and 23 RBI as Amherst’s clean-up hitter.

All-StateMeghan Rico, Jr. P, King Philip
Rico went 21-0 with a miniscule ERA of 0.15 and allowed just 29 hits over 144 innings thrown with 313 strikeouts and 24 walks. The George Washington University commit allowed only seven runs all season, three of which were earned, and threw two perfect games. Rico also threw four shutouts in the postseason on the Warriors’ drive to their repeat D1 title performance.

All-StateSarah Ropiak, Jr. P, Acton-Boxborough
The two-time Dual County League All-Star team went 13-2, including 10 shutouts, with a 0.60 ERA. Ropiak is a member of the National Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society and American Leadership Council.
All-StateShannon Smith, Soph. P, Milford
The 2010 Gatorade Player of the Year returned with a fine second season, going 21-2 for the D1 Central champion Scarlet Hawks. Smith posted a 0.94 ERA while striking out 296 in 164 innings. Smith also contributed to her own cause, hitting at a .357 clip with three home runs and 25 RBI.

STARTING NINE – FIRST TEAM
Katie Bumila, Sr. C, Coyle-Cassidy
The senior captain led a vaunted Warriors offense, hitting .536 with a home run and 22 RBI. The four-year starter was also entrusted by Coach Russell Hunt to call all the pitches behind the plate and was a three-year EAC All-Star. A star in the classroom as well, Bumila will attend Worcester Polytechnic Institute next year.

Megan Congro, Sr. Sr. 1B, Sandwich
The URI commit led the Atlantic Coast League with a robust .661 batting average with two home runs and 30 RBI.

All-StateLauren Duggan, Sr. 3B/P, Norwood
At third base, the UConn commit delivered the ball from third to first just about as quickly as you'll ever see. Duggan's cannon arm also helped her boast 1.13 ERA in the circle, splitting time with Ali Maloof. She also led the Bay State League in home runs with eight, while batting .415 with 33 RBI.

All-StateQuianna Diaz-Patterson, Sr.
The UMass-Amherst commit was perhaps the most feared lead-off hitter in the state with a tremendous first step out of the box. The captain and three-year starter hit .559 with eight home runs and 40 runs scored. Diaz-Patterson also stole 31 bases this year and held the distinction of never having been thrown out once on an attempted steal during her high school career.

Olivia Godin, Jr. C, King Philip
As much as Meghan Rico garnered the attention of the softball world this year, it was the Warriors' junior backstop who helped call the games for the hurler. The defensive stalwart also managed to put up a .400 on base percentage along with three home runs and 18 RBI. The Plainville resident has a verbal commitment to UMass-Amherst.

Meg Kelly, Sr. 2B, Reading
Kelly was a triple crown winner in the Middlesex League this season, batting .628 with five home runs and 35 RBI. She also struck out just three times all season. The URI commit was also a standout out on the Rockets' soccer and indoor track teams.

Anna Kelley, Sr. 3B, King Philip
Kelley's defense at the hot corner and her bat were main contributions to the Warriors' second straight D1 title. The UMass-Amherst commit batted .375 with a slugging percentage of .697. She also led KP in RBI with 33.

Brianna Martin, Sr. CF, Central Catholic
The three-year Merrimack Valley League All-Star was as strong in the field as she was at the plate. Martin didn't commit an error in her senior year while adding three outfield assists. Martin hit at a .549 clip while setting a Raiders program record for slugging percentage at .985.

Jenn Robillard, Sr. SS, King Philip
The Sacred Heart commit set the table for the Warriors from the lead-off spot with a .467 average and .533 on base percentage. The senior captain also stole 15 bases while contributing strong defensive play in the field.

BULLPEN – SECOND TEAM
Kiara Amos, Sr., Malden
Emily Berardi, Sr., Boston Latin
Noelle Christmas, Sr., Plymouth South
Audrey Dolloff, Sr., Bridgewater-Raynham
Meg Donegan, Sr., Central Catholic
Trish Hansen, Jr., Mansfield
Courtney Lanfranchi, Sr., Burlington
Bridget Lemire, Sr., St. Peter-Marian
Emily Mailloux, Sr., Turners Falls
Kelly Norton, Sr., Abington
Shannon Orton, Jr., Case
Megan Rich, Sr., Chelmsford

OFF THE BENCH – SECOND TEAM
Hannah Byrne, Sr. SS, Lynn Classical
Michelle Cooprider, Sr. P/OF, Hopkinton
Ellen Czuba, Sr. CF, Franklin
Alexis DeBrosse, So. 2B, New Bedford
Zoe Dillon-Davidson, Sr. C, Amherst
Amy Entel, Sr. P/OF, Somerset
Simone Frank, Sr. 3B, Amherst
Laura Kaminski, Sr. C, Amesbury
Nicole Lundstrom, So. C, Dighton-Rehoboth
Breanna Monroe, Jr. CF, Shrewsbury
Christina Raso, Jr. SS, Burlington
Reilly Weiners, So. C, Agawam

HEAD COACH OF THE YEAR
Dustin Belcher, Wahconah


WORCESTER, Mass. -- When Meghan Rico is in the circle, she remains in control. It’s not so much as King Philip head coach Jim Leonard says that perfection is “almost expected,” but nothing seems to faze her.

During Saturday’s Division 1 state championship softball game at Worcester State’s Rockwood Field, Rico found herself in a serious pickle in the sixth inning against Western Mass. champion Amherst. There were runners on first and third with one out.

No fear.

Rico reared back a little bit harder and came back with two of her 19 strikeouts to end the inning and preserve the scoreless tie. In an uncharacteristic moment, the George Washington commit gave a fist pump while sprinting off the field.

It was a big out.

And, as it would turn out, it was the difference after the Warriors took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the sixth on Meg Carnase’s double.

Rico returned to strike out the side in the seventh to provide KP with its second straight state title and finish the season undefeated at 26-0.

“We needed that right there,” Rico said of getting out of the sixth-inning jam. “If they score right there, it was going to be really hard to come back to score against them. I knew we had to score first, we had to be the ones to score and we did that.”

Runs came at a premium as the state’s top pitchers squared off in the circle with Rico opposing the Hurricanes’ Emma Mendoker.

Mendoker, the East Carolina commit, kept the Warriors hitless through 5 2/3 innings, only to take the hard-luck loss in the end. The Gatorade Massachusetts Softball Player of the Year finished with 10 strikeouts while surrendering only two hits.

“I think the main thing for Emma is that she has such an arsenal of both movement and speed that if keeps them off balance,” Hurricanes head coach Kacey Schmitt said.

Rico snapped Mendoker’s no-hit bid with a single to right-center to start the two-out rally. Courtesy runner Hailey Mullen came around to score the game’s only run on Carnase’s bases-loaded double after Amherst centerfielder Athena Donta slipped while trying to make a play on the fly ball.

It looked as though Carnase’s hit had cleared the bases, but the inning ended as an appeal made to the umpires was upheld finding that Jenn Robillard hadn’t touched third base while scoring what would’ve been KP’s third run. Instead, it was the third out.

“There were two strikes against me, so I was just trying to protect the plate,” Carnase said. “It was close, so I just swung at it and fell in.”



Amherst (23-2) jumped on Rico immediately with lead-off hitter Quianna Diaz-Patterson (2-for-3, 3 SBs) and third baseman Simone Frank banging out hits to start the game. The Hurricanes stranded both runners on base as Rico reeled off three strikeouts.

It was the beginning of a chain of 10 straight strikeouts by Rico, which helped her equal her single-game career high of 19.

“When there’s runners on base, it’s almost like she takes it personally,” Leonard said of Rico. “It was huge for us to strand those base runners in the first and again in the sixth innings, to keep those runners standing at third.”

Diaz-Patterson, the UMass commit, was again the fulcrum to the Hurricanes’ sixth-inning rally. Frank reached on a fielder’s choice via the bunt, but again the Amherst runners advanced no further.

Rico got Zoe Dillon-Davidson swinging and Mendoker looking to end the inning.

“We knew how their hitters hit,” Warriors catcher Olivia Godin said. “We went to the Amherst-Milford [state semifinal] game, so we knew that some batter we couldn’t pitch inside and we just had to go all away, off the plate. Mendoker’s great, so we had to go off plate to her.”



All they needed was just one run.

“It was a lot of pressure to get that perfect season,” Rico said. “We wanted it so bad that I had no doubt in my mind that we weren’t going to have a perfect season, but just to finish it like this is amazing.”



AMHERST, Mass. -- Thursday’s Division 1 state softball semifinal all came down to speed for Amherst.

There was the speed on the base paths, personified in lightning fast lead-off hitter Quianna Diaz-Patterson. There was also the speed thrown at the Hurricanes by the opposing pitcher, sophomore flame-thrower Shannon Smith. It was also found in the Amherst hurler Emma Mendoker’s ability to get ahead quickly in the count against the Scarlet Hawks' hitters, leaving them in a hole in their at-bats.

Those three qualities helped the Hurricanes take a 3-0 victory over Milford in a de facto home game for Amherst played on the campus of UMass.

The Hurricanes (23-1) advance to face Eastern Mass. and defending D1 champion King Philip in the state title game Saturday at Worcester State.

“We had to go in knowing that we had to speed up the game,” Diaz-Patterson said.



Amherst used the lessons learned from last year’s upset at the hands of Milford. The Scarlet Hawks outlasted the Hurricanes in eight innings to take a 1-0 win and advance to the state final against King Philip.

This time around, Amherst turned the table and it was the Hurricanes’ ace, Mendoker prevailing with the shutout. The newly minted ESPN RISE Massachusetts Gatorade Player of the Year lived up to her billing, taking a no-hitter into the sixth inning against Milford (22-2). Mendoker finished with 12 strikeouts and needed just 86 pitches for the complete game.

Although the Scarlet Hawks didn’t scratch out a hit until there was two outs in the sixth, with lead-off hitter Rachel Levine taking a bloop single to left, Mendoker hardly noticed what was going on.

“I thought, ‘Was there a ball in the infield or the outfield?’” Mendoker said.

She added: “It was awesome. I just played my heart out and so did the girls and I’m really proud of our team.”

The Hurricanes got all the offense Mendoker would require in a three-run third inning.

Amherst showed patience at the plate while working Smith for three walks during the inning, including a lead-off walk by Diaz-Patterson (3 stolen bases). Simone Frank followed with a single and Zoe Dillon-Davidson followed to load up the bases. Mendoker plated the game’s first run with a bases loaded walk. Then, Hurricanes left fielder Brittany Deres provided the game-breaking punch with a two-run single.

“It’s tough to generate offense against a pitcher like [Mendoker],” Milford head coach Brian Macchi said. “You’re just hoping to keep it a one-run game instead of a three-run game because then it really becomes an uphill battle to find a way to get those three runs.”

The Scarlet Hawks threatened in the sixth with two runners on and two out. However, Mendoker got the best of her counterpart, Smith to foul out to end the inning.

After allowing another hit in the seventh, the East Carolina commit slammed the door shut with two strikeouts to end the game.

The Gatorade Company, in collaboration with ESPN RISE, today announced Emma Mendoker of Amherst Regional High School as its 2010-11 Gatorade Massachusetts Softball Player of the Year. Mendoker is the first Gatorade Softball Player of the Year to be chosen from Amherst Regional High School.

The 5-foot-8 senior right-handed pitcher led the Hurricanes to a 21-1 record and a berth in the Division 1 sectional finals, scheduled for June 11. At the time of her selection, Mendoker owned a 21-1 record on the mound with a 0.19 ERA and 269 strikeouts in 145 innings. The two-time returning Pitcher of the Year as named by the Springfield Republican, she hurled 15 shutouts and two no-hitters. Mendoker batted .485 along with 23 RBI, 23 runs scored, seven doubles and three home runs through 22 games, producing a .750 slugging percentage and .583 on-base percentage. She finished 23-1 on the mound as a junior with a 0.21 ERA and 312 strikeouts in 165 innings, leading the Hurricanes to the 2010 Division 1 state semifinals. She also batted .459 during her junior campaign along with 24 runs scored, 17 RBI and five home runs.

Also an accomplished artist and flutist, Mendoker has maintained a 3.73 GPA in the classroom. She has donated her time as a youth softball instructor, on behalf of the National Honor Society and to benefit displaced civilians in Sudan’s western region of Darfur.

“I’ve never met somebody who dedicated herself to the sport as much as she did,” said Robyn King, head coach of the Polar Crush Gold. “She never gives up. To get to where she is today has been a tremendous accomplishment. And she’s one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. Her teammates just love her.”

Mendoker has signed a National Letter of Intent to play softball on scholarship at East Carolina University this fall.

Mendoker joins recent Gatorade Massachusetts Softball Players of the Year Shannon Smith (2010, Milford) and two-time winner Nicole D'Argento (2008-09, Ashland), among the state’s list of former award winners.

Below are the winners for the five other New England states:

CONNECTICUT: BRIANNA TURGEON, FITCH

The 5-foot-5 senior shortstop batted .464 along with 30 runs scored, 22 RBI and 14 stolen bases this past season, leading the Falcons (18-7) to the second round of the Class LL state tournament. Turgeon ripped nine doubles, five home runs and four triples, drawing 25 walks. The state’s returning Gatorade Softball Player of the Year, she produced a .955 slugging percentage and .615 on-base percentage. Also the 2010 Player of the Year as named by the The New London Day, Turgeon batted .500 as a junior with 17 RBI and three home runs. A three-time All-Area selection as named by The New London Day and Norwich Bulletin, she finished with a .382 batting average and 26 RBI as a sophomore, capturing Most Valuable Player honors in Fitch’s 2009 Class LL state championship victory.

Also a soccer standout, Turgeon has maintained a 4.05 weighted GPA in the classroom and ranks No. 19 in her graduating class. An invited participant in both LeadAmerica’s Congressional Student Leadership Conference and the People to People International educational exploration program, she has volunteered locally on behalf of multiple community-service initiatives in association with the National Honor Society, Key Club International, Students Against Drunk Driving and the March of Dimes Foundation.

Turgeon has signed a National Letter of Intent to play softball on scholarship at Fordham University this fall.

Two-time winner Turgeon joins recent Gatorade Connecticut Softball Player of the Year and two-time winner Rachele Fico (2008-09, Masuk), among the state’s list of former award winners.

RHODE ISLAND: ALYSSA MCCOART, LINCOLN

The 5-foot-8 senior right-handed pitcher and first baseman has led the Lions to an 18-3 record and a berth in the elimination bracket semifinals against TEAM, scheduled for June 9. Entering the June 8 Division 1 elimination-bracket semifinals against Cumberland High, the 5-foot-8 senior right-handed pitcher and first baseman owned a 12-2 record in the circle for the Lions (18-3). At the time of her selection, McCoart boasted a 1.04 ERA and 109 strikeouts in 101 innings pitched. At the plate, the two-time First Team Division 1 All-State selection was batting .500 with two home runs, seven doubles, 13 runs scored and 23 RBI.

McCoart has maintained a B average in the classroom. A member of the Executive Board of Lincoln High’s Future Business Leaders of America chapter, she has volunteered locally as a youth softball coach and as a teacher’s aide at an elementary school.

McCoart has signed a National Letter of Intent to play softball on scholarship at Central Connecticut State University this fall.

McCoart joins recent Gatorade Rhode Island Softball Players of the Year Elise Fortier (2010, Coventry), Fallon Scorpio (2009, St. Mary Academy-Bay View) and Steph Morse (2008, Warwick Veterans), among the state’s list of former award winners.

NEW HAMPSHIRE: TAYLOR CARBONE, ALVIRNE

The 5-foot-8 junior right-handed pitcher and first baseman has led the Broncos (18-3) to the Division I semifinals against Londonderry High, scheduled for June 9. At the time of her selection, Carbone owned a 16-3 record in the circle with a 0.58 ERA and 195 strikeouts in 123 innings pitched. A two-time First Team All-State selection, Carbone batted .487 with a home run, 26 runs scored and a .711 slugging percentage through 21 games.

Carbone has maintained a 3.44 GPA in the classroom. A youth softball coach and camp counselor, she has volunteered locally on behalf of her school’s peer-leadership program and at an area shelter providing meals for needy families during the holidays.

“Taylor Carbone is a complete player, not just a pitcher,” said Alvirne head coach Denise Rioux. “She plays the field well when she’s not pitching and she is one of the most feared hitters in our league. She is intensely competitive and a leader by example.”

Carbone joins recent Gatorade New Hampshire Softball Players of the Year Kelsey Martel (2010, Concord), Paige Hansen (2009, Concord) and Amanda Barton (2008, Franklin), among the state’s list of former award winners.

MAINE: ALEXIS BOGANDOVICH, SOUTH PORTLAND

The 5-foot-8 senior right-handed pitcher has led the Red Riots to a 16-0 record and a berth in the Class A state quarterfinals, scheduled for June 9. At the time of her selection, Bogdanovich owned a 10-0 record in the circle along with a 0.10 ERA, recording 111 strikeouts in 69 innings pitched. The 2011 Southern Maine Activities Association Player of the Year, Bogdanovich batted .577 with two home runs, 23 RBIs and an .827 slugging percentage through 16 games.

Bogdanovich has maintained a 92.8 average in the classroom. She has volunteered locally on behalf of the Boys and Girls Club of America, at an area shelter providing meals for the needy and as a youth softball coach and clinician.

Bogdanovich has signed a National Letter of Intent to play softball on scholarship at New Hampshire’s St. Anselm College this fall.

Bogdanovich joins recent Gatorade Maine Softball Players of the Year Sam Bedore (2010, Bangor) and two-time winner Hannah Hill (2008-09, Fryeburg Academy), among the state’s list of former award winners.

VERMONT: CHELSEA ABBOTT, BELLOWS FREE ACADEMY

The 5-foot-10 junior right-handed pitcher has led the Bobwhites (17-0) to the upcoming Div. I finals against Brattleboro. At the time of her selection, Abbott owned a 14-0 record on the mound with a 0.97 ERA and 168 strikeouts in 94 innings pitched. A two-time First Team All-Metro selection, she produced 25 RBI and a school-record six home runs through 17 games.

Abbott has maintained a 3.87 GPA in the classroom. A member of the 4-H Club, she has volunteered locally as an elementary school mentor and a youth softball instructor.

Abbott joins recent Gatorade Vermont Softball Players of the Year Alexis Perry (2010, Essex) and two-time winner Stephanie Frank (2008-09, Essex), among the state’s list of former award winners.

SPONSORED HEADLINES