Delene Colburn of the University of Montana Women’s Softball team earned Big Sky Conference Player of the Week honors on Tuesday for her performance last weekend at the Arizona Hillenbrand Invitational in Tucson Arizona.
Colburn batted .571 in five games in Arizona, including her first two home runs of the season, to collect her fourth career Big Sky Player of the Week award. Colburn batted 8 for 14 at the Hillenbrand Invitational, with a 1.071 slugging percentage, averaging more than a base per at-bat, and had a .647 on-base percentage. She went 4 for 4 in Montana’s opener, matching her career high for hits in a game, as Montana defeated Troy 4-3 in eight innings for their first victory of the season.
The senior drew a pair of walks against Colorado State and went 2 for 4 in Montana’s one-run loss to Louisiana-Monroe, which led to her biggest moment of the weekend. Against Arizona’s Taylor McQuillin on Saturday night under the lights of Hillenbrand Memorial Stadium, Colburn sent a 3-2 pitch over the fence in the top of the first for home run No. 1 of the season, giving the Grizzlies an early lead against the No. 11 Wildcats. McQuillin was second-team All-Pac-12 last season and one of 34 finalists for USA Softball Player of the Year. The homer gave Montana its first lead against a ranked opponent since going up 2-0 in the top of the first against No. 16 Utah last March in St. George, Utah.
On Sunday morning Colburn made it back-to-back games with a home run, something she did once as a freshman, twice as a sophomore and three times last season. In the bottom of the fourth against Troy, Colburn evened the score at 1-1 with the 38th home run of her career. Colburn had two of Montana’s three hits against Arizona and Troy as the Grizzlies dropped a pair of 2-1 games.
Montana will travel to Riverside, Calif., later this week for tournament No. 3 of 5 of the early season. The Grizzlies will play games against George Washington, New Mexico and UC Riverside.