Being named to the All CIF Southern Section softball first team is an honor bestowed upon few, or in local terms, reserved for a select four.
San Marino High junior Michelle Floyd and senior Alexis Watanabe were selected to the Division V first team, while Marshall Fundamental senior Ruth Kamm and junior Amy Zeronian earned Division VI honors.
It was another banner season for Floyd, who led the Titans (18-9-1) to a runner-up finish in the Rio Hondo League and advancement to the second round of the CIF Southern Section Division V playoffs.
“Every award you receive is special, but not because you did it alone but because you share the honors with your teammates,” Floyd said. “There’s some disappointment that we didn’t finish as well as we could have, but we still had a strong season.”
The 6-foot-3 hurler, who has verbally committed to the University of Arizona, was certainly a catalyst for her team’s success, finishing with a 16-7 record and a 0.88 ERA, while accumulating an amazing 288 strikeouts over 160 innings.
Floyd’s 288 strikeouts was seventh-best in California, which is more impressive given that every other pitcher above her tossed at least an additional 15 innings.
Not to be forgotten was Floyd’s prowess at the plate, as the Titans No. 3 hitter batted .444 with 32 hits, 23 RBI, 19 runs, eight doubles and five home runs.
“I wish I could have had another 14 or 15 Michelles on the team,” former San Marino Coach Nick Schepperle said. “But I’m not just talking about her skills, but about her effort, her work ethic, her desire and her leadership. She brought everything to the table.”
To get to Floyd’s third spot in the lineup, opposing pitchers first had to deal with leadoff hitter Watanabe.
The University of Lehigh-bound infielder led her team with a .493 batting average, 33 hits, 24 runs, nine RBI, eight doubles and one homer, while Watanabe swiped eight bases.
“She was a real pest to the other teams in league and that’s exactly what you want from your leadoff hitter,” Schepperle said. “When she got on base, we were doing well.”
While San Marino edged out Marshall (17-6) for most local wins, the Eagles were even with the Titans in divisional selections with Kamm and Zeronian picking up nods.
Kamm, a third baseman, batted .375 with 29 runs, 27 hits, 13 RBI and three triples.
“Ruth is a wonderful student-athlete who is headed to Whitworth University,” retiring Marshall Coach Jason Taylor said. “I had the opportunity to work with Ruth the last four years and she had such a great attitude and joy to playing the game.”
The Belmont University committed-Zeronian, who played shortstop for Taylor, was a force on defense and offense.
Zeronian hit .594 this season with 41 hits, 38 runs, 33 RBI and a local-best nine homers. Zeronian also stole 15 bases and finished with a .964 fielding percentage, while committing only four errors.
“I had three goals to start the season. One was to make the All CIF team, the second was to bat .900 and the third was to be named to the All Alpha League team,” Zeronian said. “Maybe the second goal was set a little too high, but I got the other two and I’m really happy to be make the All CIF team.”
Marshall finished third in the Alpha League and won a Division VI wild-card game before losing in the first round.