Shortened Week For Big West Softball Due To Weather
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Last week Mother Nature decided to grace us with her presence, putting a halt on many tournaments taking place in the southern region of California. The Big West softball teams were able to squeeze in 13 of their 29 scheduled games. A handful of teams were able to get mid-week games in before the weekend upset of rain. Three teams did not compete this weekend, UC Riverside, Cal State Northridge and Cal Poly, while the other five teams were able to get in at least one matchup to stay in play.
Cal State Northridge had to reschedule its competition against New Mexico on Saturday and Sunday, and have moved it to play two of the original three contests in a doubleheader on Sunday, April 8 starting at 11 AM.
Cal Poly was set to compete in the Saint Mary’s Classic, but did not make it to the field, as the tournament was canceled, and their Monday doubleheader against Fresno State as well due to bad field conditions. Cal State Fullerton, Long Beach State, UC Davis and UC Santa Barbara all competed in at least two games this week while Pacific picked up a loss to Colorado State at home.
49ER GETS IT DONE
Erin Jones-Wesley continues to get the job done for the 49ers with a split, win and loss for Long Beach last week. In a 1-0 win over Iowa, Jones-Wesley pitched her 15th complete game on the season and her third-consecutive shutout. She held her opponents to 24 consecutive-scoreless innings, before snapped in the matchup against Harvard, where they got one earned run in the 3-0 victory over Long Beach.
The starting right-hander collected her third Big West Pitcher of the Week accolade for her performance last week, while being her eighth overall weekly honor in her two-years played in the Big West Conference. She leads the team starting 19 of the 24 games played so far on the season with a 11-9 record and 2.49 ERA. Jones-Wesley is the sole owner of each of the 49ers wins this season as the team has collected an 11-18 record thus far. She leads the league in innings pitched (126.1), wins (11), tied for first in most starts (19) and ranks second in league-leading ERA (2.49).
BIG WEST PROGRESS
In a shortened week, the Big West teams were unable to perform at their best with an overall week record of 5-8, unable to grab a victory in any of the five contests on Friday. UC Santa Barbara split on the week, while hosting the Gaucho Classic II, whereas Long Beach State added a W against Iowa (1-0), UC Davis versus Virginia (11-5) and Cal State Fullerton over Notre Dame (1-0).
This week marks the last round of tournament play and non-conference competition, before facing league foes starting on March 31st. Cal Poly will host the Mustang Classic in San Louis Obispo for a five-game stretch at home after a 20-game road streak to start the season. UC Riverside will host the UCR Tournament with four scheduled games after their week off last week, and Pacific will host the Libby Matson Tournament to close the week with five matchups. UC Santa Barbara, Long Beach State, UC Davis, and Cal State Northridge will all play a max of two games this we
TIGERS CLAW TO THE TOP
While only one competition last week, the Tigers continue to hold the only winning record in league to start the season against non-conference opponents. Last week Pacific was downed by Colorado State 6-5 in a postponed game from the previous day, while having to cancel their matchup against Butler. It was a seventh inning rally for opponent, Colorado, pushing across four runs to come from behind and take the win.
Junior centerfielder Megan Hom posted three hits in her four at bats with a triple and two RBI, while Nikki Armagost got a pair of hits with a double and an RBI while pitching into the seventh inning before closer, Tori Shepard took the circle.
Armagost continues to excel in the circle and at the plate, providing support for her Tiger’s winning record. She holds the highest conference batting average (.383) and ERA (2.23), while holding opponents batting average to the leagues second-best (.242) while starting 24 of her 24 appearance this season.
The Tigers hold a 14-10 record with a chance to improve in a five-game homestretch this weekend hosting the Libby Matson Tournament.
BIG WEST BEING “WATCHED”
The Amateur Softball Association (ASA) announced February 1st that Pacific junior pitcher/utility Nikki Armagost has been selected to the Top 50 “Watch List” for the 2012 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award.
Now in its 11th year, the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award, given by the National Governing Body for softball in the United States, recognizes outstanding athletic achievement by female collegiate softball players across the country.
As a sophomore, Armagost was named the 2011 Big West Player of the Year as well as an All-Big West First Team honoree and a Second Team All-Region award winner. Armagost was a vital two-way player in helping Pacific capture the 2011 Big West championship. She ended the season posting a .367 average with 65 hits, and went 19-11 overall in the circle with a 2.66 ERA.
MOORE MAKES NATIONAL TEAM
Junior catcher Amy Moore will be the first player in Tigers’ program history to be an active player on the roster of a national team. Moore was one of 16 players to be named to the 2012 Great Britain National Team on February 17 to represent Great Britain at the Canadian Cup in Vancouver during the Summer of 2012.
Moore will join the Great Britain squad at the conclusion of her junior season at Pacific to play for the currently ranked No. 11 squad in the world and No. 3 in Europe. The Canadian Cup is used as a warm up for the 2012 World Championships played in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada among the top 16 teams from around the world.
ESPNU & ESPN3
In collaboration with ESPN and the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority, the Big West Conference launched a ten-game distribution package on ESPN3 this past Fall. The first appearance for Big West women’s softball will be the double-header at Cal State Fullerton against Long Beach State for conference play on May 5 at 2:30 pm and 5:00 pm on ESPNU. The second double-header televised will be a LBSU at Pacific battle on May 11, slated for 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm on ESPN3.
This year’s package included a volleyball match, two baseball, two men’s basketball, two women’s basketball, one MPSF men’s volleyball and two softball games. The addition of games on ESPN3 extends ESPN’s current five-year deal with the Big West, which continues through the 2012-13 season.
ESPN3 is currently available in more than 70 million households through computers, tablets and smart phones and in 25 million households via Xbox gaming consoles.
BACK FOR MORE
Three-year All-Big West First-Team recipient Alex Holmes will return to the Aggies’ dugout this season but in a different capacity. Holmes will be returning as a student-assistant coach under head coach Karen Yoder. While on the Davis’ lineup Holmes made club and conference rankings including national recognition from NCAA Division I statistics with eight triples in 2011.