Gophers pitcher Sara Groenewegen, a senior from White Rock, British Columbia, was named one of 25 candidates for the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year.

She is 17-2 with a 0.70 ERA and 147 strikeouts this season.

The list of players will be narrowed to 10 and then three in May. The winner will be revealed May 30 at the NCAA women’s college World Series in Oklahoma City.

Groenewegen has been among the 10 finalists the past two seasons.

Minnesota (35-3) is ranked No. 6 in the latest USA Today/NFCA rankings.

Etc.

• Gophers freshman Regan Pittman of Spring Hill, Kan., was named to the U.S. women’s team for the Under-20 Pan American Cup, which will be held May 8-13 in San Jose, Costa Rica. The 6-5 middle blocker did not play in any matches for Minnesota last fall.

• Emily Cripe, a former player and assistant coach at Seton Hall, was named the women’s soccer coach at Hamline. The past two seasons Cripe, a St. Paul native who attended Cretin-Derham Hall, was a performance analyst at national power North Carolina.

• Jesus Campos was named the St. Catherine women’s soccer coach. He has been a Macalester women’s soccer assistant the past five years.

• The MIAC averaged more fans for football games than any other Division III conference last fall for the sixth consecutive season. An average of 3,193 fans attended the 49 football games hosted by the MIAC’s nine teams. St. John’s led the nation in attendance per game (7,787) for the 15th time in the past 16 years, Concordia-Moorhead was sixth (4,951) and Bethel 11th (4,201).