March 12, 2009
Anaheim, Calif. - Ryan Pineda and Jaclyn Rymer are not only standout athletes competing for Cal State Northridge, but also exceptional students in the classroom and valued members of the community.
For their exceptional achievements, Pineda and Rymer were honored by the Big West Conference, along with 16 other conference student-athletes as Conference Scholar-Athletes of the Year at a breakfast ceremony on Tuesday morning at the Crown Plaza Anaheim Resort Hotel.
Pineda, who hails from Las Vegas, Nevada, burst onto the collegiate baseball scene in his first season with the Matadors, earning 2008 Big West Freshman Player of the Year and Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American honors. Pineda posted the team's third- highest batting average (.325), led the team in runs scored with 38, and tied for the team lead in hits with 72.
Heavily involved in the community, Pineda is a church choir member. Pineda volunteers and reads to kids at libraries and schools during the summer. A marketing and management major, Pineda one day hopes to play professional baseball or work as an economist in business or government.
"Ryan has a great combination of attributes which includes great character and ability," said Cal State Northridge head baseball coach Steve Rousey. "He puts in a lot of work and takes pride it in. All those great attributes come from his family. His parents believe in Ryan achieving really good grades."
Rymer, from Bakersfield, Calif., earned All-Big West First Team honors in 2008 on the heels of receiving second team accolades as a freshman in 2007. One of the toughest outs in the country, Rymer struck out only eight times all of last season. In addition, Rymer hit a team-leading .400 in Big West play.
In the community, Rymer was a volunteer for Mastering Abilities Riding Equines, helping people with disabilities through therapeutic horseback riding. Rymer also volunteered with Heartfelt, an organization that serves underprivileged kids. Rymer also utilized her sports background as an intern in the Athletic Media Relations office at Cal State Northridge. The journalism major aspires to be involved in magazine publication, learn to play the piano, travel to Australia and Spain, and improve her kick-boxing skills upon graduation.
"Jaclyn Rymer is a fantastic student-athlete," said head softball coach Barbara Jordan. "She gets the job done in the classroom and is a great softball player. But more importantly, she is a great person. She does the right things on-and-off the field. She is a great role model for her teammates."