Former University of Kentucky softall All-American Molly Johnson was named Friday to the United States National Team.
Johnson, a shortstop, became UK’s first softball All-American in 2009, when she broke three school records (81 hits, 53 runs, .498 on-base percentage) and set career highs in nine offensive categories. She completed her UK eligibility in 2010 and served as an assistant coach for the Wildcats this year.
This will be her third consecutive season representing Team USA. She also played for the USA Futures squad last year.
The 2011 National Team has an 18-player roster and one alternate.
The team will open play against the USA Softball Junior National Team on Saturday, June 25, with a doubleheader exhibition series at Plant City, Fla. Exhibition doubleheaders against the Junior Nationals also are set June 29 at Salem, Va., and July 1 at Bowie, Md.
Then, it will be on to international play.
Team USA will go to Surrey, British Columbia, for the Canadian Open Fast Pitch International Championship, July 9-17. That will be followed by the World Cup of Softball VI, July 21-25, at Oklahoma City.
The Americans will be after their ninth Pan American Games gold, Oct. 17-23, at Guadalajara, Mexico.
South Florida’s Ken Eriksen will coach the National Team, assisted by Olympic gold-medalists Tairia Flowers and Stacey Nuveman. Flowers is head coach at Cal State Northridge, while Nuveman is an assistant at San Diego State. Completing the coaching staff is Oregon head coach Mike White.
The National Team roster (with school attended): Valerie Arioto (California); Whitney Canion (Baylor); Kaitlin Cochran (Arizona State); Lauren Gibson (Tennessee); Kelly Grieve (Tennessee); Taylor Hoagland (Texas); Ashley Holcombe (Alabama); Molly Johnson (Kentucky); Stacy Johnson (Iowa); Megan Langenfeld (UCLA); Jenae Leles (Arizona); Michelle Moultrie (Florida); Christine Orgeron (Louisiana Lafayette); Keilani Ricketts (Oklahoma); Brittany Schutte (Florida); Jordan Taylor (Michigan); Rhea Taylor (Missouri), and Chelsea Thomas (Missouri). Alternate: Jessica Shults (Oklahoma).