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Softball: Ciara Bryan and Summer Ellyson Receive First Team All-Region Honors
Duo represents Louisiana Softball on NFCA All-Central Region team, now eligible for All-America
LAFAYETTE – The 15th-ranked Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns Softball team placed two student-athletes on the 2021 National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) Division I All-Central Region Team with Ciara Bryan and Summer Ellyson both being named to the first team.
The NFCA's all-region awards honor softball student-athletes from the Association's 10 regions with first, second and third team selections. NFCA member coaches from each respective region voted on the teams.
Bryan and Ellyson now become eligible for selection to the 2021 NFCA Division I All-America team which will be announced on Wednesday, June 2, via NFCA.org.
Louisiana has had at least one player on an all-region team in every year that awards have been distributed dating back to 1988.
The senior tandem's selection increases the program's all-time total number of all-region selections to 133. For the 13th consecutive announcement of awards (2008-19, 2021), Louisiana had multiple honorees.
Ellyson earned her third NFCA All-Central Region honor in a Ragin' Cajuns uniform, adding to selections in 2018 and 2019. Bryan captured the third all-region award of her collegiate career, adding to the 2018 and 2019 NFCA All-Southeast Region spots she earned at Georgia.
Bryan, the Sun Belt Conference's Player and Newcomer of the Year, enters the NCAA postseason ranked No. 2 nationally with 80 base hits. By recording at least one base hit in all but five of the 54 games Louisiana has played, she has delivered the first 80-hit campaign of her career and maintained a .420 average or above throughout its entirety.
The Ragin' Cajuns leader in extra base hits with 19 (10 doubles, 4 triples, 5 home runs), Bryan turned in two separate double-digit hitting streaks highlighted by a 17-game streak from Feb. 26-Mar. 27 which was the program's longest since 2013. She's swiped a team-leading 35 stolen bases and scored a team-leading 57 runs in large part to a reached base streak that lasted through the season's first 39 games.
Ellyson (23-6, 2.22 ERA, 173 K), a repeat winner as Sun Belt Conference Pitcher of the Year, guided Louisiana to the conference championship and a steady spot in the Top 20 by turning in a personal 11-game win streak with a 1.41 ERA from March 21-April 20. She factored into key SBC series wins by claiming two wins over both Troy and Texas State and combining with Kandra Lamb to shutout South Alabama over 21 innings.
With the third 20-plus win season of her collegiate career, Ellyson has climbed to 97 career wins which places her third on the program's career listing. Over her last 24 appearances in the circle (17 starts), Ellyson is 18-2 with a 1.65 ERA.
No. 15 Louisiana (44-10) is set to make its 22nd consecutive appearance and 30th overall in the NCAA Tournament Friday-Sunday, May 21-23 at the Baton Rouge Regional. The Ragin' Cajuns face George Washington (37-9) in the opening round at 5:30 p.m. on Friday live on ESPN3 at Tiger Park.
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