Marshall softball player Zerkle picked for U.S national team

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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (HERDZONE) – Marshall softball’s Morgan Zerkle was named to the 2017 USA Women’s National Team, announced by USA Softball Friday.

“It's truly a dream come true to be a part of the USA Women's National Softball Team,” Zerkle said. “I am truly blessed to get the opportunity to represent my country playing the sport that I love so much. I never imagined that this day would actually come.”

The selection comes on the heels of the recently completed USA Selection Camp in Clearwater, Fla., where athletes were evaluated by the Women’s National Team Selection Committee.

Zerkle was one of 20 players selected to the USA National Team. The team is comprised of 11 current collegiate student-athletes and nine former NCAA student-athletes.

“Since this process began we have been telling ‘Z’ she belongs,” Marshall head coach Shonda Stanton said. “We know the special caliber of athlete wearing the green and white and now she gets to represent the red, white and blue and that is awesome.”

“She is the prime example of using your God given skill-set and taking massive action in training and preparation in order to perform at the highest level. Her story is a simple message to all athletes - success is hard to keep quiet when you understand your why and invest the work daily to bring your best and bring it often. We are so proud of her. This is only the beginning of Z's journey and we cannot wait to see this next chapter unfold.”

Zerkle is the first Marshall student-athlete to be named to the USA Softball Women’s National Team.

The senior was a member of the USA Women’s National Elite Team in 2016.

"It is very obvious that the future talent pool of USA Softball players is very deep," said USA head coach Ken Eriksen. "The high level of play and skill assessment displayed at the 2017 National Team trials, not only by the former players but also by the first time trial attendees, was fantastic.”

The USA National Team will compete at the World Cup of Softball XII in July in Oklahoma City, Okla., and at a Pan American Games/World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) World Championship Qualifier.

In 2016 for Marshall, Zerkle hit .482 with 54 hits, including three doubles, two triples and two home runs despite missing 22 games due to injury. She had 28 runs scored and 28 stolen bases. Against FIU on May 1, she became the fastest player in Herd history to reach 200 career hits in just her 137th game.

For more information on Marshall softball, follow the team on twitter @HerdSB or follow them on Facebook at Marshall University Softball.

The Thundering Herd opens its season at the Unconquered Invitational hosted by Florida State University from Feb. 10-12.

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