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June 5, 1998

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%^$COLUMBUS, Ohio – Second baseman Candace Kollen has been selected by her teammates as the Most Valuable Player on the 1998 Ohio State softball team. A senior from Cerritos, Calif., Kollen received the award at tonight’s annual Softball Awards Banquet, held at the Fawcett Center. %^$

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%^$Kollen finished her career as one of the greatest ever to wear the Scarlet and Gray. She leaves OSU as its all-time leader in hits (232), stolen bases (44), runs scored (129) and at bats (751). %^$

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%^$”We had a good number of players play very well for us this year,” said Ohio State Coach Linda Kalafatis. “But Candace had a solid year and was probably our most consistent performer week-in and week-out.” %^$

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%^$Other major award winners included regional All-American’s Renae Weigel (So., Coldwater, Ohio), selected by her teammates as the Offensive Player of the Year and Cheryl Palaroan (Jr., Reno, Nev.), selected by her teammates as the Most Improved Player. %^$

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%^$Jodi Dolan (Sr., Fallon, Nev.), who is currently playing in the Women’s Professional Fastpitch league with the Virginia Roadsters, was selected by her teammates as the Pitcher of the Year. %^$

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%^$Additionally, Kollen took home Defensive Player of the Year honors. %^$

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%^$Also earning accolades were freshmen Holly English (Akron, Ohio) and Kristi Martin (La Mirada, Calif.), who were both named co-Rookies of the Year. %^$

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%^$The Scholar-Athlete of the Year Award was presented to Julie Bauman (Sr., Canfield, Ohio). This honor is given to the Buckeye that best exemplifies success both in the classroom and on the field. %^$

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%^$The Buckeye Spirit Award was presented to Carla Tobias (Jr., West Jefferson, Ohio) and the Coaches Award, voted by the OSU coaching staff, was given to second team all-Big Ten catcher Jaime Chenevey (Jr., Wooster, Ohio). %^$

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%^$Ohio State finished the season with a 33-23 record, which marked only the fifth time in 27 years of Buckeye Softball in which the 30 win plateau was eclipsed. “I am not only proud of tonight’s award winners but all 16 members of this team,” Kalafatis said. “From the beginning to the end, this season was a thorough enjoyment. This season was a great stepping stone for this program.”%^$