Trio of Matadors Earn All-Big West Recognition
June 2, 2011
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. -
The 2011 Cal State Northridge Baseball season has come to an end, and three Matadors were recently named to All-Big West Conference teams, the conference office announced this week. Redshirt junior Andrew Muren and sophomore Marty Bowen garnered Second Team accolades and junior Vincent Roberts earned an Honorable Mention from the league's coaches.
"Being recognized by opposing coaches as one of the best at your position in the Big West Conference is a high honor," said head coach Matt Curtis. "We are proud of the hard work that Drew, Marty and Vince put in this year to be honored in this way."
Drew Muren, a redshirt junior from Ramona, Calif., returned to the Matadors in 2011 as the starting centerfielder after being selected in the 35th round of the 2010 Major League Baseball Draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates. Before the season began, Big West coaches selected Muren as the Best Defensive Outfielder in the conference in a College Baseball Insider poll. Muren appeared in all 56 games for Northridge this season and started all but two.
Muren hit for an overall .306 batting average, good for second highest on the team, and led the squad with 32 RBI. He hit 17 doubles, good for third-most in the Big West, along with a triple and three home runs in 2011. His 3-for-5 day against San Diego State on March 8 included a grand slam and five RBI to give the Matadors a late lead in a 12-9 victory at Matador Field. Muren followed the slam with a homer in his next at-bat three days later against Lafayette to become the only Northridge player with home runs in consecutive games this season and was named as the Big West Co-Player of the Week on March 13.
Muren hit for a .345 average against Big West opponents with seven doubles and 14 RBI.
Bowen, a second-year catcher out of Oceanside, Calif., received conference recognition for the first time in his Northridge career after leading the team with a .320 batting average in 2011. He started 46 of 52 games he appeared in and recorded 55 hits on the year, 27 of which came during the conference slate. His offensive season was highlighted by two four-hit games, at home against Valparaiso (2/28, 4-for-4, three RBI) and on the road against Cal State Bakersfield (4/9, 4-for-5, two RBI).
Among his hits were five doubles and one home run, a two-run shot to left field in a 4-2 victory at home against UC Santa Barbara. Bowen used the Big West schedule, the most difficult portion of the campaign, to unleash his power. In conference games, Bowen hit four of his five doubles and his lone home run while collecting a .307 batting average. His average ranked second on the team in conference play. Behind the plate, he threw out 12 base runners in 44 stolen base attempts to solidify his role as the starting catcher in the later portion of the year.
Vincent Roberts, a junior from Modesto, Calif., shook off a rough start to the season to come on strong late in the year. His efforts in Big West play earned him an Honorable Mention in the year-end awards voting. Roberts began the season with a 0-5 record but turned things around to finish the season at 3-6. Only twice did he allow more than three runs in his 16 outings (11 starts) and he led the team with 55 strikeouts and a 3.44 ERA.
Roberts' first victory came in a 4-0 win over UC Santa Barbara at home on May 6. He scattered five hits over 7.0 innings to help Northridge snap a six-game losing streak. Against Long Beach State on May 20, Roberts had the best outing of his career and the best showing for a Matador pitcher in nearly five seasons by completing a four-hit shutout on the road in a 2-0 victory. He struck out three and walked one in 9.0 innings to pitch the first CSUN complete game since teammate Paul Tremlin pitched one on May 1, 2010 and the first complete game shutout since Edwin Quirarte did it at UC Santa Barbara on April 30, 2006.
Roberts finished the year with a 3-1 record against Big West teams with one save and a 2.20 ERA. Over the season, opponents hit a combined .232 against the right-hander, the lowest among starters on the team.