Walton named SEC Coach of the Year

Walton named SEC Coach of the Year

Florida's improbable run to the Southeastern Conference title earned head coach Tim Walton Coach of the Year honors in the league.

The Gators were voted to finish fourth in the SEC East and seventh overall in the conference during the preseason voting by the coaches in the league. Florida closed the season with a 49-7 record, going 27-3 at home, 13-3 on the road and 9-1 in neutral site games.

The big number was 18-6 in the SEC, earning the Gatos the conference title for the third time under Walton and the fourth time in program history. This is the fourth time Walton has earned the honor, also receiving it in 2008, 2009 and 2011.

Florida players were also represented on the list.

Junior pitcher Hannah Rogers and sophomore designated player Lauren Haeger were both named to the First Team All-SEC. Rogers ended the regular season with a 28-5 record and a 1.34 ERA with 22 complete games. Haeger went 13-2 with a 2.31 ERA while being second on the team with a .327 batting average, adding 16 home runs and 57 RBI.

Freshman infielder Kelsey Stewart and senior outfielder Kelsey Horton were both named to the Second Team All-SEC. Stewart ended her strong first collegiate season with a team-high .395 batting average and stealing 31 bases while leading the team with 52 runs scored.

Stewart was joined by outfielder Kristi Merritt on the Freshman All-SEC Team. Merritt hit .292 with 42 runs scored, 22 RBI plus a .479 on-base percentage.

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