The hall-of-fame selection is the second prestigious honor for James in less than a year. Last October, James became the fourth Husker softball player to have her jersey retired. A graduate of Papillion-LaVista High School, James enjoyed a decorated four-year career at Nebraska from 2001 to 2004.
James was a four-time, first-team All-Big 12 selection, becoming the first pitcher to earn four first-team honors in league history. During a stellar senior season in 2004, James was named a second-team NFCA All-American in addition to being named Big 12 Player of the Year and Big 12 Tournament MVP.
James was also a three-time Big 12 all-tournament team selection, a six-time Big 12 Pitcher-of-the-Week honoree and earned one Big 12 Player-of-the-Week honor. On the national level, James was a three-time NFCA National Player-of-the-Week selection and was one of 25 finalists for the USA Softball Collegiate Player-of-the-Year award in 2002 and 2004. She was also a first-team NFCA All-Region selection in 2003 and 2004 and a second-team honoree in 2002.
In her career, James boasted a 98-38 record with a 1.19 ERA and 945 strikeouts in 917.1 innings. She threw 44 shutouts, including three no-hitters, and tossed one of only three perfect games in Nebraska history. James is the Nebraska career record holder in strikeouts and shutouts, while ranking second in wins, innings pitched, no-hitters and complete games (101), fifth in ERA and saves (9) and sixth in winning percentage (.721).
In earning All-America honors as a senior, James posted a 37-9 record with a 0.70 ERA in 298.1 innings. She tossed a school-record 18 shutouts and struck out a school-record 394 batters, while opponents hit only .137 against her. In addition to her school-record strikeout and shutout totals, James posted the second-highest win total in Nebraska history that season, while also ranking second in innings pitched and complete games (39) and seventh with an .804 winning percentage. James’ 0.70 ERA in 2004 stands as the lowest at Nebraska since 1987 and is good for seventh in the Husker record book.
James also owns a spot on Nebraska’s single-season top-10 lists in wins (23, t-10th in 2003), innings (243.2, t-8th in 2003), strikeouts (250, 8th in 2003), shutouts (nine, t-9th in both 2002 and 2003), saves (four, t-7th in 2002) and complete games (27, t-7th in 2003).
James also routinely hit for herself, finishing with a .224 average in 554 career at bats. James batted .280 with nine home runs and 37 RBIs in 2002 and finished her career with 124 hits, 63 runs scored, 16 doubles, 14 homers, 76 RBIs and 24 stolen bases.
Fans can celebrate James’ election by attending the induction dinner at 5 p.m. on Saturday, July 30. Cost of a ticket is $320 for a table of eight and $40 for individuals. Tables can be reserved by calling 402-250-0383 or 402-618-5386. For more information on the Nebraska Black Sports Hall of Fame, visit www.nbshof.com.
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