Softball places four on All-UAA squad, Specker 1st team, Genovese ROY

WALTHAM, Mass. – Four members of the Brandeis University softball team have been selected to the All-University Athletic Association team. Leading the way, senior 1B Marianne Specker of So. Windsor, Conn., earned first-team honors. Outfielder Amanda Genovese of New Haven, Conn., was selected as the Association Rookie of the Year. She was also placed on the All-UAA second team, along with shortstop Brittany Grimm of Perkiomenville, Pa., and centerfielder Lauren Porcaro of Shrewsbury, Mass.

Specker earns her second career All-UAA selection, after a second-team berth in 2011. In the most recent update of UAA statistics, Specker led the Association with 35 RBI, ranking her 55th among all Division III players. She leads the team with 45 hits and has seven doubles, two triples and two home runs this season for a .549 slugging percentage. With four regular-season games remaining on the scheduled, Specker ranks third on Brandeis's career list with 170 hits, fourth with 105 RBI and is one of nine players in school history with 150 games played.

Genovese is Brandeis's first UAA Rookie of the Year in softball since the award was first presented in 2001. She leads the conference with a .489 on-base percentage  and 15 stolen bases, is third with a .418 batting average and fourth with 32 runs scored, all tops on the team. She also leads the team with 13 walks and ranks second on the Judges with 43 hits.

This is Grimm's third-straight selection to the All-UAA team. She was a second-team shortstop last year and a first-team outfielder as a sophomore. Grimm is currently hitting .382, third on the team, while slugging a team-best .664 thanks to a team-high 11 doubles – fourth in the UAA - a triple and six home runs. She has 29 RBI and 28 runs scored, both second-most on the team. Grimm is tied for fourth on Brandeis's career list with 169, just one behind Specker. She is also fifth in total bases (250) and seventh in doubles (34), home runs (13) and RBI (93) and eighth with 11 runs scored. Grimm is also part of the 150-game club.

Porcaro, who is currently tied for the UAA lead and for 59th in all of Division III with seven home runs, makes her first appearance on the All-Association team. She is hitting .330 overall with 28 RBI and 23 runs scored, both third on the squad. Her .624 slugging percentage was fourth in the UAA in the most recent rankings, thanks to nine doubles and a triple along with her seven homers. Porcaro is also second to Genovese with 12 stolen bases on the team and third in the UAA. For her career, Porcaro ranks sixth with 15 home runs, while her seven blasts so far in 2012 are tied for eighth on the all-time single-season list.

Overall this season under head coach Jessica Johnson, who is in her sixth season with the Judges, Brandeis is 20-15 with four games remaining on the schedule. The Judges, who were ranked fifth in New England in the most recent NCAA Division III Regional rankings, have won 20 games in seven consecutive seasons.

Specker is a 2008 graduate of the Westminster School. She is the daughter of Ken and Carol Specker, Windsor, Conn.

Genovese is a 2011 graduate of North Haven High School. She is the daughter of Mark and Caren Genovese, North Haven, Conn.

Grimm is a 2008 graduate of Perkiomen Valley High School. She is the daughter of Kevin and Marie Grimm, Perkiomenville, Pa.

Porcaro is a 2008 graduate of Shrewsbury High School. She is the daughter of Mike and Tracy Porcaro, Shrewsbury, Mass.