(Gophersports.com) -- Five University of Minnesota Gophers have been named to the All-Big Ten team with Maddie Houlihan earning Big Ten Freshman of the Year, the conference announced Wednesday.

Sam Macken Photo: Gophersports.com

Houlihan, Sara Groenewegen and Sam Macken were all selected to the first-team. Taylor Lemay and Sydney Dwyer earned second-team honors. LeMay was also named to the Big Ten All-Defensive Team while Paige Palkovich earned a Sportsmanship Award.

This is the second straight year the Gophers have had five all-league selections. Before that 1991 was the last time the feat was accomplished. The Maroon and Gold had the second most selections in the conference.

Houlihan, first base, led the Gophers in Big Ten play and all freshmen in the conference hitting a .464 with seven doubles and five home runs. She had a team leading 23 RBI in league play and recorded 54 total bases with a .783 slugging percentage. She also stole six baes. She won four B1G Freshman of the Week awards and is just the fourth Gopher to win Big Ten Freshman of the Year.

For the third straight year Groenewegen, pitcher, has earned first-team conference honors. This is the second straight year that she has been a unanimous selection. She threw a 1.58 ERA going 13-1 with six complete games, four shutouts, a no-hitter and a save. She fired in 125 strikeouts while only allowing opposing batters to hit a .167 average. At the plate Groenewegen was third on the team in Big Ten play hitting .373 while adding four doubles and seven home runs for 24 RBI. She was also walked 17 times and had an on base percentage of .532, a team best during B1G play, along with a team best .797 slugging percentage. She was named Big Ten Pitcher of the Week five times and Big Ten Player of the Week twice.

Macken’s big season earns her first-team honors for the first time in her career after being named to the second-team a season ago. She hit .375 against conference foes with seven doubles, a triple and five homers for 20 RBI. She fielded a .973 at third base with 24 assists and 12 putouts. Overall on the season Macken is second in the country in extra base hits with 33 on 21 doubles, a triple and 11 home runs. Her 21 doubles has her second in Minnesota history for most doubles in a season heading into postseason play.

This is the first time that LeMay, catcher, has been recognized by the conference. She hit .348 with four doubles, a triple and three home runs for 23 RBI. She had a .576 slugging percentage and a .456 on base percentage. She was solid behind the plate with 160 putouts and 19 assists for a fielding percentage of .978. Opponents rarely tried to steal on her going just 8-11 in conference play. Overall on the season teams went just 23-30 on stolen base attempts with LeMay catching seven runners stealing and picking off three. She almost never lets the ball past her with only two passed balls all season long.

Dwyer, utility, earns All-Big Ten honors for the first time in her career in her first full season starting. She played shortstop and designated player for the Gophers all season and brought a big bat to conference play hitting .373 with four doubles and four home runs. She had a slugging percentage of .644 and an on base percentage of .479.

Palkovich, outfielder, was one of 14 recognized Sportsmanship Award honorees. She has been a constant leader for the Gophers throughout her career and has started more games than any active player with 170 starts. The students chosen are individuals who have distinguished themselves through sportsmanship and ethical behavior. These students must also be in good academic standing and have demonstrated good citizenship outside of the sports-competition setting.

2016 Softball All-Conference Teams and Individual Awards
First Team All-Big Ten
MEGAN BETSA, Jr., P, MICH
SIERRA LAWRENCE, Sr., OF, MICH
SIERRA ROMERO, Sr., 2B, MICH
Kelsey Susalla, Sr., OF, MICH
SARA GROENEWEGEN, Jr., P, MINN
Maddie Houlihan, Fr., 1B, MINN
Sam Macken, Jr., 3B, MINN
MJ Knighten, Jr., 3B, NEB
Kiki Stokes, Sr., OF, NEB
Andrea Filler, Sr., SS, NU
Amy Letourneau, Sr., UT, NU
Alex Bayne, Jr., OF, OSU
Cammi Prantl, Sr., UT, OSU
Macy Jones, Sr., OF, PSU
Lexi Knief, Sr., OF, PSU
Alyssa VanDerveer, So., C, PSU
Lilly Fecho, Sr., P, PUR
Kelsey Jenkins, So., 3B, WIS
Second Team All-Big Ten
Allie Bauch, Sr., 2B, ILL
Nicole Evans, Jr., OF, ILL
Rebecca Blitz, So., OF, IND
Shannon Cawley, Sr., OF, IND
Holly Hoffman, Sr., C, IOWA
Sarah Calta, Jr., OF, MD
Tera Blanco, So., 1B, MICH
Sara Driesenga, Sr., P, MICH
Aidan Falk, So., C, MICH
Lindsay Montemarano, Jr., 3B, MICH
Sydney Dwyer, So., UT, MINN
Taylor LeMay, Sr., C, MINN
Mattie Fowler, Sr., 1B, NEB
Morgan Nelson, Fr., 3B, NU
Sabrina Rabin, So., OF, NU
Maddy McIntyre, Sr., SS, OSU
Taylor White, So., OF, OSU
Taylor-Paige Stewart, Sr., P, WIS
Players in ALL CAPS denote unanimous selection
All-Defensive Team
P: Amy Letourneau, Sr., NU
C: Taylor LeMay, Sr., MINN
1B: Mattie Fowler, Sr., NEB
2B: Allie Bauch, Sr., ILL
SS: Maddy McIntyre, Sr., OSU
3B: Lindsay Montemarano, Jr., MICH
OF: Carly Thomas, So., ILL
OF: Sammi Gyerman, Jr., IOWA
OF: Alex Bayne, Jr., OSU
PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Sierra Romero, Sr., MICH
PITCHER OF THE YEAR: Megan Betsa, Jr., MICH
FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR: Maddie Houlihan, MINN
COACH OF THE YEAR: Carol Hutchins, MICH

Player in ALL CAPS denote unanimous selection

Sportsmanship Award Honorees: Jill Nicklas, ILL; Michelle Huber, IND; Sarah Kurtz, IOWA; Brenna Nation, MD; Lauren Connell, MICH; Kelly Zackrison, MSU; Paige Palkovich, MINN; Lotte Sjulin, NEB; Aubrie May, NU; Jayla Saibene, OSU; Shannon Good, PSU; Paris Andrew, PUR; Stephanie Huang, RU; Ashley Van Zeeland, WIS