The Lady Vols are pinning their upset hopes on ace hurler Monica Abbott. The 6-foot-3 lefthander has won an NCAA-best 41 games thus far in 2006. Included were six no-hitters and a perfect game.
Abbott, a native of Salias, Calif., is one of four finalists for the Honda Sports Award for Softball. UT center fielder Sarah Fekete is also a finalist. Fekete, who hails from Maryville, is batting an eye-popping .522 for UT co-coaches Ralph and Karen Weekly.
Another Lady Vol with an impressive resume' is shortstop Lindsay Schutzler. She recently was tabbed "Academic All-America of the Year" by ESPN the magazine.
Originally from Monterey, Calif., Schutzler is batting .426 with 72 runs, eight doubles, eight triples, 28 stolen bases and 41 RBI. Her academic numbers are just as impressive. She compiled a 3.86 grade point average in psychology during the just-completed school year.