Watten on Welch: "Abbey is one of the best defensive pitchers I have ever seen. She has an incredibly competitive mentality and she sets a tone of `hunger' when she is in the circle. Abbey's speed and movement of pitches give us variety and depth, which makes her a strong compliment to the pitching rotation. Abbey is also one of our greatest strengths in the outfield and will be counted on as our starting center fielder when not pitching. She has tremendous speed and is extremely quick on the bases, which provides us with a great advantage in having a true defensive pitcher and offensive threat as well."
As a Junior (2006): Finished with a 2-5 record and a 3.29 ERA, second-best among returning pitchers ... pitched a perfect game in a March 22 win over Morgan State, the only perfect game of the year by an ACC player, and only the seventh in Maryland history ... saw significant time in the outfield ... had nine multiple-hit games ... tied for third on the team with 25 runs ... belted six doubles and three triples ... had 12 sacrifice hits, tied for the most among Terrapins ... fourth on team with an on-base percentage of .381 ... stole five bases in eight attempts ... had one run scored, two hits and three RBIs in victory over Cornell (March 11) ... notched six assists in a win over Delaware State (April 5) ... recorded three sacrifice hits in win over Delaware (May 3).
As a Sophomore (2005): Had a 7-4 pitching record ... posted a 1.85 ERA ... pitched 72 innings on the year ... earned wins over ranked teams Missouri and Georgia ... had 55 strikeouts last season ... had team-leading three saves ... first hit of the year was a fourth-inning double against Maryland-Eastern Shore (March 31) ... pitched three hitless innings to get win at Villanova (March 30) ... shut out Towson (March 27) ... got second save of the year after entering game with bases loaded against Mount St. Mary's (March 19) ... threw one-hitter and eight strikeouts in 3-0 win against St. Joseph's in FSU Invitational (March 13) ... pitched four innings and gave up just one hit in win against Georgia State (March 11) ... entered game in fifth inning in game against University of Georgia (March 4) to improve to 2-1 on the year ... pitched first complete-game victory, striking out three in game against Missouri (Feb. 19) in Crimson Classic.
Before Maryland: Played one season with Longwood University in Farmville, Va., and was named a Division II All-South Atlantic Region second team member ... set school records with a 0.86 ERA and 188 strikeouts ... named Freshman Athlete of the Year for Longwood Athletics ... two-time player of the week from Division II ECAC ... lettered four seasons at Maurice J. McDonough High School in La Plata, Md. ... played shortstop and pitcher for McDonough and was named county and SMAC Player of the Year in 2003 ... first team All-Metro by The Washington Post in 2003 ... named MVP of McDonough in both 2002 and 2003 ... an excellent athlete at McDonough; also lettered four seasons in soccer and track.
Personal: Daughter of John and Wanda Welch ... has two brothers, John and Zachary, and a sister, Mandy, who played softball at the University of Delaware from 1998-2002 ... a government and politics major.
Welch on the mound... Year W-L ERA G-GS CG IP H R ER BB SO 2005 7-4 1.85 21-9 4 72.0 57 24 19 29 55 2006 2-5 3.29 26-6 6 68.0 36 32 32 19 46 Total 9-9 2.54 47-15 10 140 93 56 51 48 101
Welch at the plate... Year G-GS Avg. AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB 2005 10-7 .217 23 2 5 2 0 0 3 0-0 2006 58-55 .261 134 25 35 6 3 0 9 5-8 Total 68-62 .255 157 27 40 8 3 0 12 5-8