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June 1, 2002

2009 Season - 2002 Softball Review

Cassandra Hallstrom is named most outstanding player in the CCIW as Vikings finish 2002 season with 27-15 overall record

During the spring of 2001, then-freshman Cassandra Hallstrom (Moline HS, Moline, IL) gave notice that she could be a special player before she leaves the Augustana College softball program. In a season that was cut short due to a knee injury, Hallstrom batted .463, set a new school record for single season home runs with five and earned NCAA Division III All-American honors. Viking coach Kris Kistler could hardly wait for the 2002 campaign to begin so that she could see what Hallstrom could do in a full year.

Now that the 2002 season has been completed, Kistler knows exactly what Hallstrom can do and the third year coach is probably anxiously awaiting the next two years. Hallstrom, a second baseman, was virtually impossible to retire as she batted .398 with 53 hits in 133 at-bats while scoring 32 runs and collecting 30 runs-batted-in. She had 16 doubles, one triple and five home runs. She tied her own school record for single season home runs and she moved into the top 10 in at-bats (133 - tied for fourth), runs scored (32 - tied for seventh), hits (53 - tied for third) and RBI (30 - tied for second). Her 16 doubles is a new school record, breaking the old mark of 15 set by Keri Rooney in 1996.

Hallstrom was selected as the Most Outstanding Player in the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin after she helped lead Kistler's Vikings to a fine 27-15 overall record. Augustana was 8-6 in the CCIW and placed third in both the CCIW regular season and conference tournament. Hallstrom owns the Augustana career record for home runs with 10 and she has moved into a tie for fourth in career doubles (21) and a tie for ninth in RBI (54).

Whenever opposing pitchers went against Augustana this spring the name Hallstrom was certainly talked about in the pre-game meeting and it wasn't only Cassandra who was the topic. Junior Hayley Hallstrom (Moline HS, Moline, IL) was the regular designated hitter and freshman Heidi Hallstrom (Moline HS, Moline, IL) started the entire year at shortstop.

Hayley Hallstrom batted .322 with 29 hits in 90 at-bats while scoring 15 runs and driving in 14. She also had seven doubles and three home runs. She has moved into fourth place on the career hits list with 121, is fifth in RBI with 61, third in home runs with seven and tied for 10th in runs scored with 66. She also set a school record this year on the pitching mound when she struck out 20 batters in a 4-1 loss to Benedictine in the Augustana Invitational on April 13. Heidi Hallstrom batted .336 with 44 hits in 131 at-bats with 21 runs scored, eight doubles, three triples, three home runs and 29 RBI.

The 27 victories put together by the Vikings this spring is tied for second on the school's list of single season wins, matching the 1980 (27-9) and 1996 (27-14). During her three year Augustana coaching career, Kistler has now managed to forge a record of 80-50 (.615) overall and 23-19 (.548) in the CCIW.

Six seniors played their last softball game for the Vikings on May 3 when Millikin defeated the Blue & Gold 3-2 in the CCIW Tournament in Bloomington, Illinois. The are: outfielder Jennifer Carlson (Woodstock HS, Woodstock, IL), pitcher Melissa Cook (Morrison HS, Morrison, IL), first baseman Brooke Faoro (Kewanee HS, Kewanee, IL), outfielder Christine Okon (Glenbard East HS, Lombard, IL), second baseman Patrice Schoolman (Herscher HS, Kankakee, IL) and third baseman Ann Thomas (Muscatine HS, Muscatine, IA). Together this group helped Augustana compile a four year record of 99-71 (.582) overall and 29-27 (.517) in the CCIW.

Okon gained the most notoriety of the seniors as she leaves with her name plastered all over the record books. She owns three career school records: at-bats (511), hits (179) and stolen bases (87) and one single season mark: stolen bases (31 in 2000). In addition she is second in career runs (108) and eighth in career base-on-balls (39). On the single season lists Okon's name appears a total of 10 times including three each in the categories of at-bats, hits and stolen bases.

In addition to Cassandra Hallstrom being named as the Most Outstanding Player in the CCIW, six other Vikings were named to the all-conference team. Joining Cassandra on the first team was Heidi Hallstrom at shortstop. Pitcher Michelle Kass (Mundelein HS, Mundelein, IL), Okon and Hayley Hallstrom were second team selections while Thomas and rightfielder Julie Untch (Downers Grove North HS, Geneva, IL) were third team choices.

Five players were selected to the all-Great Lakes Region team with Cassandra Hallstrom at second base and Hayley Hallstrom at designated hitter making first team. Kass and Okon were second team selections while Heidi Hallstrom was honored on the third team.

Cook, a steady performer throughout her career as a pitcher, was named to the Verizon Academic All-District team in District Five (Illinois, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Indiana). She was 7-2 this year with an earned run average of 2.02 in 69 2/3 innings of work. She appeared in 14 games, 11 of those as a starter, had five complete games and four shutouts and struck out 58 batters.

During her career she posted a record of 27-19 with a 2.52 ERA and 179 strikeouts in 310 2/3 innings of work. She ranks fifth on Augustana's list of career victories, third in strikeouts and fifth in innings pitched. She had 22 complete games during her four years on the mound for the Vikings. She is seventh in career ERA and her 80 strikeouts in 2001 is fourth on the school's single season list. She carries a grade point average of 3.84 with majors in Accounting and Business.

Kass was named Augustana's Most Valuable Player by a vote of her teammates. She was the ace of the pitching staff with an 11-6 record, appearing in 20 games, 17 of those as a starter. She posted a 1.23 earned run average in 113 2/3 innings of work. Kass had 13 complete games and recorded 126 strikeouts against just 16 base-on-balls. She moved into third place on the school's single season strikeout list, is fifth in earned run average, tied for seventh in victories and just missed breaking into the top 10 in innings pitched.

Cassandra Hallstrom was named Best Offensive Player and Heidi Hallstrom was awarded the title of Best Defensive Player. Untch was the Most Improved Player and junior shortstop Carrie Kepple (Farmington HS, Farmington, IL) won the Player's Choice award.


CCIW Overall

Team Won Loss .PCT Won Loss Tie .PCT
Illinois Wesleyan 12 2 .857 32 11 0 .744
Millikin 10 4 .714 16 21 0 .432
Augustana 8 6 .571 27 15 0 .643
Wheaton 7 7 .500 16 20 2 .447
Carthage 7 7 .500 22 12 0 .647
North Central 6 8 .429 24 13 1 .645
North Park 4 10 .286 19 22 0 .463
Elmhurst 2 12 .143 9 26 0 .257

2002 CCIW Tournament Results

At Illinois Wesleyan University ** Bloomington, Illinois

Thursday, May 2

Game 1 12:00 noon - Augustana 4, Millikin 1

Game 2 2:00 p.m. - Illinois Wesleyan 5, Wheaton 4

Game 3 4:00 p.m. - Millikin 4, Wheaton 1 (Wheaton eliminated)

Game 4 6:00 p.m. - Illinois Wesleyan 2, Augustana 1


Game 5 12:00 noon - Millikin 3, Augustana 2 (Augustana eliminated)

Game 6 2:00 p.m. - Illinois Wesleyan 8, Millikin 1 (Millikin eliminated - Illinois Wesleyan earns NCAA Division III berth)

Augustana Superlatives

Most Valuable Player: Michelle Kass

Best Offensive Player: Cassandra Hallstrom

Best Defensive Player: Heidi Hallstrom

Most Improved Player: Julie Untch

Player's Choice: Carrie Kepple

Verizon Academic All-Conference: Melissa Cook

CCIW Player of the "Year: Cassandra Hallstrom

CCIW All-Conference: (1st team) - Cassandra Hallstrom, 2B & Heidi Hallstrom, SS; (2nd team) - Michelle Kass, P, Christine Okon, OF, Hayley Hallstrom, Utility; (3rd team) - Ann Thomas, 3B & Julie Untch, OF.

Great Lakes All-Region: (1st team) - Cassandra Hallstrom, 2B & Hayley Hallstrom, DH; (2nd team) - Michelle Kass, P & Christine Okon, OF; 3rd team) - Heidi Hallstrom, SS.