Big West Announces 2011-12 Scholar-Athletes Of The Year
The 2011-12 Big West Male and Female Scholar-Athletes of the Year from the nine conference institutions were honored at a special banquet on Thursday at the Doubletree by Hilton Anaheim. The winners were selected by each institution and are represented by nine different sports.
2011-12 BIG WEST FEMALE SCHOLAR-ATHLETES
Molly Pon, Cal Poly (Davis, Calif.) – Molly is a political science major and an outside hitter on the Cal Poly women’s volleyball squad. She averaged 1.91 kills, 1.28 digs and 0.38 blocks per set this past season. She has been named to the Dean List and by being named on the Dean’s Honors List for at least three of the four quarters of the university year, she also resides on the President’s List. Pon has completed an internship at Porter Scott Law Firm and volunteered with Special Olympics and Dig For Delaney outside the classroom. Pon plans on going to law school upon graduation.
Lauren Chow, Cal State Fullerton (La Palma, Calif.) – Lauren is a point guard on the Cal State Fullerton women’s basketball team with numerous accolades during her career. She was the Big West Freshman of the Year and All-Freshman Team member in 2007-08 and now owns the school recordin three-pointers made and attempted while also ranking in the top 10 in assists. Chow has made the Dean’s List several times and earned All-Big West Academic Honors on two occasions. A participant in the Susan G. Komen Race For The Cure, she wants to become a strength and conditioning coach as well as work with children with special needs.
Sher Chun Wing Jennifer, Cal State Northridge (Hong Kong, China) – Sher, a two-time letterwinner in singles and doubles for Cal State Northridge in women’s tennis, she captured All-Big West First Team Honors and Big West Athlete of the Week twice in 2011. She made the Dean’s List three times and excels outside the classroom, helping Los Angeles inner city kids through an outreach program. Sher also encourages elementary school children to read. A psychology major, Sher would like to compete professionally on the women’s tennis circuit or attend graduate school to follow a career in sports psychology.
Kaitlyn Gustaves, Long Beach State (Long Beach, Calif.) – Gustaves competed for the Long Beach State women’s soccer team and earned all-conference second team plaudits in 2011. She led the 49ers to the most successful season in program history as LBSU advanced all the way to the NCAA Elite Eight. She posted shutouts against No. 7 Pepperdine, Miami (FL) and San Diego as the 49ers advanced the furthest of any Big West school in the postseason. Gustaves was named to the 2011 NSCAA Women’s University Scholar All-West Region Team. Her long-term goal is to become a physician’s assistant and volunteer at clinics in needed areas around the world.
Sarah Sumpter, UC Davis (Cloverdale, Calif.) – A cross country/track distance runner for UC Davis, Sumpter helped steer her team to a first place finish at the 2011 Big West Cross Country Championships. In track, she came in third place in the 10,000 meters at the conference meet. In the classroom, she was a Big West Fall and Spring All-Academic Team member. She was an invited speaker for the UC Davis Intercollegiate Athletics Donors Dinner. She redshirted the fall 2010 cross country season and spring 2011 track season while undergoing radiation and chemotherapy for a rare type of brain tumor. A psychology major, Sumpter aspires to a career working with student-athletes who battle eating disorders.
Alexandra Kopf, UC Irvine (Sonora, Calif.) – Kopf starred for the UC Irvine women’s soccer team as a forward who finished her four-year career ninth on the school’s career list in goals (20) and 11th in points (44). She netted 11 goals in 2011 to tie for eighth all-time in UCI history. Kopf impressed in the classroom as well as she earned Dean’s Honor List and Big West Fall All-Academic Team kudos. In the community, she volunteers at the Children’s Hospital of Orange County and is an undergraduate research student within the UCI Medical Center. She is pursuing medical school to become a surgeon.
Danielle Littleton, UC Riverside (Oceanside, Calif.) – Littleton competes on the UC Riverside women’s track and field squad in sprints, hurdles and the long jump. The Big West Women’s Track and Field Freshman of the Year in 2011, she qualified for the conference meet in four events and scored points for the Highlanders in three of them. Littleton took part in the 2011 USA Outdoor Track and Field Junior Championships in the 110m hurdles and took 13th overall. Beyond the competitive arena, the media and cultural studies major has worked on house renovation projects in her hometown of Oceanside, and plays an active role in the Helping Hands Ministry at her church. Her goal is to obtain a masters in broadcasting and become a sideline reporter for ESPN.
Chelsey Lowe, UC Santa Barbara (Yorba Linda, Calif.) – Lowe serves as the libero for the UC Santa Barbara women’s volleyball team. A 2011 All-American and first team All-Region performer, she set the Gaucho record for digs in a season with 652. She secured 2011 Academic All-Big West for her work in the classroom. Her community involvement includes working with Hearts Adaptive Riding Center that covers everything from helping children that have special needs to working with war veterans. Lowe’s aspirations include traveling the world to help others and eventually working in Sports Administration.
Julia Hansen, Pacific (Hamburg, Germany) – Jennifer is the team captain on the Pacific women’s tennis team. A member of the first team all-conference doubles in 2011, Hansen owns a career winning record in both singles and doubles. Her academic achievements include Beta Gamma Sigma, Dean’s List and Pacific Scholar-Athlete. She volunteered with Adopt-A-Family and Pacific Sports Day. She plans to attend graduate school in Production/Supply Chain Management and hopes to own her own company someday. For now, the international business and marketing major just wants to continue playing tennis. 2011-12 BIG WEST MALE SCHOLAR-ATHLETES
Matthew Titchenal, Cal Poly (Sonoma, Calif.) – A three-year letterwinner on the Cal Poly men’s basketball team, Matthew has made the Dean’s List in 11 out of 13 quarters and has been named to the President’s List twice. His community service work includes Special Olympics and volunteering at Guarderia El Manantial for children in Costa Rica. He scored a career-high nine points against UC Riverside on Jan. 20. Titchenal wants to attend graduate school and earn a PhD in mechanical engineering before pursuing a teaching position at a university.
Carlos Lopez, Cal State Fullerton (Northridge, Calif.) – Lopez is Cal State Fullerton’s male scholar-athlete for the second straight season. He was a Big West All-Academic honoree in 2009-10 and earned a place on the Dean’s List in the spring of 2011. He is a career .349 hitter over two seasons with the Titans and in 2011 ranked in the conference’s top 10 in RBI, slugging percentage and triples. Lopez recently traveled to Mexico to build homes for those that could not afford to do so. He hopes to play baseball professionally or obtain a law degree to become a sports agent.
Joe Franco, Cal State Northridge (Monrovia, Calif.) – A men’s soccer defender on the Matadors, Franco was selected to the Big West All-Academic Team in 2010 and 2011. He has never missed a contest in his three year career. He volunteered for the Junior Diabetes Annual Walk and participated in the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee Adopt A Family for Christmas. He plans to work in federal law enforcement after pursuing professional soccer opportunities.
Brennan Metzger, Long Beach State (San Marcos, Calif.) – Metzger is a four-year starter in center field for the Long Beach State baseball team. He is a two-time CoSIDA Academic All-District selection, including a first-team All-District nod in 2010. He owned a 19-game hitting streak in 2010, the longest by a 49er since 2007. He works with the Los Altos Little League, helping to coach clinics with youth baseball players to hone their skills. His career aspirations include pursuing professional baseball following the end of his collegiate tenure.
Mustafa Chopan, UC Davis (Citrus Heights, Calif.) – The center midfielder for the UC Davis men’s soccer team, Chopan was a Third Team Capital One Academic All-America and a 2011 Capital One Academic All-District VIII. He helped out in the volunteer reading program at various elementary schools. The neurobiology, physiology and behavior major also was a research assistant at the UC Davis Medical Center and VA Medical Center in 2009. Chopan wants to enter medical school and his career goal is to specialize in surgical oncology.
Douglas Crumlich Jr., UC Irvine (Irvine, Calif.) – Crumlich Jr. is a business economics major and a senior shortstop on the UC Irvine baseball team. An All-Big West Second Team selection, Crumlich also earned NCAA Regional All-Tournament Team honors. A member of the Dean’s Honor List, he has a dream of becoming a professional baseball player and later opening up his own business. In the community, Crumlich coaches an 11 year old baseball team and volunteers at the Boys and Girls Club of Laguna Beach.
Cody Suppé, UC Riverside (Chino, Calif.) – A senior goalkeeper on the UC Riverside men’s soccer team, Suppé started the final 17 contests of the 2011 season and led the Highlanders to a 9-4-4 mark during that stretch and the team’s first-ever appearance in the Big West Tournament. He led the Big West in saves and saves per game. He gives back to the community through his involvement with Inland Hills Church and Southern California Seahorses. In addition, he participates in mission trips to Mexico, and volunteers at soccer clinics in the summer months. A sociology major, Suppé hopes to play soccer professionally and pursue a career in the ministry.
Mathieu Forget, UC Santa Barbara (Geneva, Switzerland) – Forget is a senior men’s tennis player at UC Santa Barbara. He earned All-Big West Second Team honors in 2010-11 and was an all-conference honorable mention selection in 2009-10. A member of the school’s Dean’s List in 2011, he gives back to the community through volunteering for the Special Olympics Volunteers for Bryan Brothers Foundation fundraising events. Forget is a theater major and wants to hone his craft in professional acting, dancing or music in Los Angeles or New York.
Thomas Berolzheimer, Pacific (Stockton, Calif.) – Thomas, who is working on his MBA in Business Administration at Pacific, is a right-handed pitcher on the baseball team. He has struck out 62 batters in 73.2 career innings. He is a four-time member (2007-11) of the Dean’s List and graduated cum laude with a B.S. in Business Administration. Outside the classroom, Berolzheimer worked with Adopt-A-Family, the Buddy Walk of San Joaquin County, and helped send holiday care packages to the troops overseas. He eventually wants to start his own companies as an entrepreneur.