Riverside and Davis Win Series and Weekly Player Recognition
Tough matchups this past week left the Big West softball standings in a four-way tie for first place going into the last three weeks of conference play. Long Beach State, UC Davis, UC Santa Barbara and Pacific have all found themselves notched at 8-4 in league, all fighting for the top seed with little margin for error. This week UC Riverside’s Jessica Vasser earned Big West Player of the Week and UC Davis’ Justine Vela is honored as Big West Pitcher of the Week.
Vasser Hits Her Way To .500
Starting junior for the Highlanders, Vasser competed in all three conference games last week, showing a perfect 1.000 slugging percentage and .500 batting average for Riverside’s first series win against Cal State Fullerton.
The San Diego native went a combined 4-for-6 with 5 RBI against the Titans in a doubleheader on Saturday. Her three hits and three RBI performance in the first contest was a career-high, with a career-best three runs scored in the second game.
Vasser helped lead the Highlanders to the series win over Cal State Fullerton for just the second time in Division I history. On the week she went 4-for-8 batting .500 with 5 RBI, three runs scored with a double and a home run.
Others nominated: Madeline Sale (Cal State Northridge), Bree Stephan (Long Beach State), Chandler Wagner (UC Davis), Lainey DePompa (UC Santa Barbara), Megan Foglesong (Pacific)
Vela Triples Up On Weekly Honors
Freshman pitcher, Vela pitched two complete shutouts for the Aggies this past week in their series competition against Cal Poly. Vela improves to 7-1 on the season for her third Big West Pitcher of the Week honor in 2012.
The Bakersfield, Calif. native combined to allow only five hits over her two-game appearance, facing a total 52 batters. She held opposing batters to a low .106 hitting percentage while only walking four and bringing in 19 strikeouts.
In her first outing she reached the double digit mark in strikeouts for the ninth time this season and fourth time in conference play. She averages nearly 10 strikeouts per seven innings in Big West matchups with a 0.40 ERA in her eight league starts.
Others nominated: Erin Jones-Wesley (Long Beach State), Shelby Wisdom (UC Santa Barbara)