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Top Three Teams Earn Big West Annual Awards

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09 All-Conference

5/26/2009

Big West Champion UC Irvine, Cal State Fullerton and Cal Poly are the lucky recipients of the conference's annual awards. The Anteaters nabbed their second straight Big West Pitcher of the Year honors with the selection of Daniel Bibona and teammate Ben Orloff was named Big West Player of the Year. UC Irvine head coach Mike Gillespie collected the school's first Big West Coach of the Year award since 1987 when Mike Gerakos earned the same title. Cal State Fullerton’s freshman duo of Noe Ramirez and Tyler Pill was tabbed Big West Co-Freshman Pitcher of the Year and Cal Poly’s Matt Jensen was named Big West Freshman Player of the Year.

A year after All-American Scott Gorgen was one of three recipients of the first-ever Big West Tri-Pitcher of the Year award, Bibona secured UC Irvine's second straight pitcher of the year accolade. The southpaw from Lake Forest, Calif., was undefeated in Big West play, boasting a 7-0 record and a 2.58 earned run average. Overall, he is currently second in the conference with a 2.65 ERA but tops the league in wins with 11 and strikeouts with 94. Bibona is one of 15 players vying for the College Baseball Foundation's Pitcher of the Year award and is a semifinalist for the 2009 USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award.

UC Irvine, who has been known for its pitching over the past few seasons, is now being recognized for its performance at the plate and on the field as Orloff collects the school's first Big West Player of the Year award. The senior from Simi Valley, Calif., is currently hitting .359 and boasts a .978 fielding percentage. He is eighth in UC Irvine's season records with a league-high 85 hits and tops the team with 17 stolen bases, tying him for sixth in the Big West. Orloff is one of 15 semifinalists for the Brooks Wallace Award presented by the College Baseball Foundation, which honors the country's top shortstop.

Jensen, currently sidelined with a fractured clavicle suffered in a game May 2, sports a .375 batting average with 15 doubles, nine home runs and 53 RBI. The Clovis, Calif., native had started 41 of Cal Poly’s 42 games before he was involved in a collision with a San Francisco baserunner. Jensen had a 23-game hitting streak, the third longest in Cal Poly Division I history, before it was snapped by UC Santa Barbara on April 24. He was 35-for-89 (.393) during the streak with 24 RBIs and produced six consecutive two-hit games during the streak. Prior to the injury, Jensen had 17 multiple-hit games this season and 13 multiple-RBI contests. Earlier this month, the freshman second baseman was extended an invitation to the 2009 USA Baseball National Team Trials.

In his first season wearing a Titan uniform, Pill has accumulated 10 wins this season to set a school record for most wins by a freshman, breaking Dustin Miller (2002) and Dave Weatherman’s (1979) mark of nine victories. The southpaw's 10 wins knots him in fourth place with Donovan Osborne (UNLV, 1988) in the Big West record books. Hailing from Covina, Calif., Pill has tallied a 4.10 ERA in 90.0 innings pitched. He has struck out 64 batters and has only issued 12 walks, to rank second in the Big West.

Ramirez is close behind his fellow Titan teammate with eight victories on the mound this season. The East Los Angeles, Calif., native currently ranks fourth in the Big West with a 2.93 earned run average and is holding his opposition to a league's third-best .228 batting average. Ramirez has tossed 78 strikeouts, ranking third in the conference, and has allowed just 17 walks in 92.0 innings pitched.

In just his second year at the helm of UC Irvine, Mike Gillespie guided the Anteaters to their first-ever Big West Conference title with a near flawless 22-2 mark, earning him Big West Coach of the Year honors. Along with its impressive Big West record, UC Irvine was a perfect 12-0 at home during conference play this season. Following an incredible start to the season that included series wins over Tulane, Hawaii, nationally-ranked Cal Poly and Cal State Fullerton, UC Irvine received its first No. 1 ranking in the national polls. Since reaching the highest rung of the ladder, the Anteaters have embraced the top spot for six consecutive weeks, the longest streak of any team this season in the Baseball America poll. For its efforts, UC Irvine received a national seed in the upcoming NCAA Regionals and has the honor of hosting its first regional. Gillespie enters the postseason with an 85-31 record during his two years at UC Irvine.

Big West Champion UC Irvine and Cal State Fullerton received five All-Big West First Team nods to lead all conference teams, followed by Cal Poly and UC Riverside who each picked up two selections. UC Santa Barbara and Pacific each placed one player on the first team. Anteater teammates Orloff and Eric Pettis are making their second appearance on the first team list.

2009 Big West All-Conference Team

2009 BIG WEST PLAYER OF THE YEAR 2009
Ben Orloff, UC Irvine

BIG WEST FRESHMAN PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Matt Jensen, Cal Poly

2009 BIG WEST PITCHER OF THE YEAR
Daniel Bibona, UC Irvine

2009 BIG WEST CO-FRESHMAN PITCHER OF THE YEAR
Tyler Pill, Cal State Fullerton Noe Ramirez, Cal State Fullerton

2009 BIG WEST COACH OF THE YEAR
Mike Gillespie, UC Irvine

FIRST TEAM

Player School Ht. B/T Yr. Pos. Hometown
Francis Larson UC Irvine 6-1 R/R Jr. C Yorba Linda, Calif.
Jared Clark Cal State Fullerton 6-4 R/R Sr. 1B Castaic, Calif.
Matt Jensen Cal Poly 5-10 R/R Fr. 2B Clovis, Calif.
Ryan Goetz UC Riverside 5-10 L/R Jr. 3B Temple City, Calif.
Ben Orloff^ UC Irvine 5-11 R/R Sr. SS Simi Valley, Calif.
Khris Davis Cal State Fullerton 6-0 R/R Jr. OF Glendale, Ariz.
Josh Fellhauer Cal State Fullerton 5-11 L/L Jr. OF Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.
Eric Deragisch UC Irvine 6-3 R/R Sr. OF Granite Bay, Calif.
Nick Longmire Pacific 6-2 R/R So. OF San Diego, Calif.
Michael Hur UC Riverside 6-0 R/R Jr. DH Stevenson Ranch, Calif.
Adam Buschini Cal Poly 6-2 R/R Jr. UTL San Ramon, Calif.
Daniel Bibona UC Irvine 5-11 L/L So. SP Lake Forest, Calif.
Daniel Renken Cal State Fullerton 6-4 R/R So. SP Cypress, Calif.
Joe Gardner UC Santa Barbara 6-5 R/R Jr. SP Fremont, Calif.
Nick Ramirez Cal State Fullerton 6-3 L/L Fr. RP Anaheim Hills, Calif.
Eric Pettis^ UC Irvine 6-2 R/R Jr. CP West Hills, Calif.

 

SECOND TEAM

Player School Ht. B/T Yr. Pos. Hometown
Kurt Wideman Pacific 5-11 R/R Sr. C Fallbrook, Calif.
Eric Oliver UC Santa Barbara 6-1 R/R Sr. 1B Irvine, Calif.
J.B. Brown Pacific 6-1 L/R So. 2B Alvin, Texas
Casey Stevenson UC Irvine 6-3 L/R Jr. 2B Saugus, Calif.
Mike Walker Pacific 6-3 L/R Jr. 3B Marysville, Calif.
Kyle Smith Cal Poly 6-1 R/R Jr. SS Visalia, Calif.
Ryan Lee Cal Poly 6-0 R/R Sr. OF Los Altos, Calif.
Carl Uhl UC Riverside 5-9 S/L Sr. OF Phelan, Calif.
Ronald Shaeffer UC Irvine 6-2 R/R Fr. DH Garden Grove, Calif.
Joey Centanni Pacific 6-0 L/R Sr. UTL San Diego, Calif.
Paul Applebee UC Riverside 6-2 L/L Jr. SP Upland, Calif.
Christian Bergman UC Irvine 6-1 R/R Jr. SP Altadena, Calif.
Adam Wilk Long Beach State 6-2 L/L Jr. SP Cypress, Calif.
Dustin Emmons UC Riverside 6-1 R/R So. RP La Crescenta, Calif.
Brian Slover Cal State Northridge 6-3 R/R So. CP Covina, Calif.

 

HONORABLE MENTION

Player School Ht. B/T Yr. Pos. Hometown
Ross Brayton Cal Poly 6-1 R/R Jr. C Oakdale, Calif.
Dustin Garneau Cal State Fullerton 6-1 R/R Sr. C San Pedro, Calif.
Marty Mullins UC Santa Barbara 5-10 R/R Jr. C Los Gatos, Calif.
Richard Cates Cal State Northridge 5-11 L/R Sr. 1B Yuba City, Calif.
Matt Valaika UC Santa Barbara 5-10 R/R Jr. 2B Valencia, Calif.
Ryan Cavan UC Santa Barbara 5-11 S/R Jr. 3B Belmont, Calif.
Ty Kelly UC Davis 6-0 S/R Jr. 3B Tracy, Calif.
Christian Colon Cal State Fullerton 6-0 R/R So. SS Corona, Calif.
Brian Gump UC Santa Barbara 6-1 L/L Sr. OF Westminster, Calif.
Tommy Reyes UC Irvine 6-0 R/R Fr. OF Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.
DJ Gentile Cal Poly 6-2 R/R So. DH Petaluma, Calif.
Gary Brown Cal State Fullerton 6-0 R/R So. UTL Diamond Bar, Calif.
Tyler Pill Cal State Fullerton 6-1 L/R Fr. SP Covina, Calif.
Noe Ramirez Cal State Fullerton 6-2 R/R Fr. SP East Los Angeles, Calif.
Mark DeVincenzi Cal Poly 5-10 R/R Jr. RP Napa, Calif.
PJ Rousey Cal State Northridge 6-0 R/R Sr. RP La Cresenta, Calif.
Brock Bardeen UC Irvine 6-2 L/R Sr. RP Fallbrook, Calif.
Eric Massingham Cal Poly 6-2 R/R Sr. CP Benicia, Calif.
Charlie Ruiz Long Beach State 6-1 R/R Jr. CP San Leandro, Calif.

^Two-time All-Big West First Team selection

 
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