DON KETCHUM is a native of Phoenix. He was a sportswriter for The Arizona Republic/The Phoenix Gazette for nearly four decades. He covered high school sports on several occasions as well as the Arizona Diamondbacks, Arizona Cardinals and Arizona State sports. From 2008-14, he was a staff writer for, the web site of the Arizona Interscholastic Association.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

National honors for spring sports athletes

Belated congratulations are in order for two Xavier senior athletes who recently earned national recognition in spring sports.
Coincidentally, both athletes also helped XCP win the Division I state badminton team championship in the fall.
The athletes are Areta Buness and Mallory Belknap.
Buness helped get the XCP lacrosse team off to a successful start in the first week of the season. She scored 12 goals in an 18-17 overtime win against Phoenix Pinnacle and was named a national Player of the Week by the Web site.
The lacrosse team defeated Phoenix Desert Vista of Ahwatukee 11-9 in its most recent match and has a 6-1 record going into its next match, Monday (March 23) at Scottsdale Desert Mountain. Start time is 6 p.m.
Belknap is the second baseman for Xavier’s softball team.
She was named a national Player of the Week  for the week of March 9-15 by MaxPreps and the National Fastpitch Coaches Association. She had 14 hits in 21 at-bats with 11 runs scored and 4 RBIs. She had six multi-hit games in the first week.
Xavier has a 13-4 record entering its next game on Monday against visiting Chandler Hamilton at Petznick Field. First pitch is 3:45 p.m.

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