Congratulations Big West Champions

June 25, 2008

Northridge, Calif. - With the close of the school year for 2007-08, Cal State Northridge Athletics enjoyed many outstanding team achievements.

In particular were the play of the Matador men's basketball team, and the Cal State Northridge women's track & field team. Both teams looked impressive throughout the season in capturing Big West titles.

Cal State Northridge completed its 50th season of intercollegiate basketball in 2007-08, and ended the year with a share of the Big West regular title along with Cal State Fullerton and UC Santa Barbara.

The Matadors chalked up a 20-10 overall record, and an impressive mark of 12-4 in conference play.

Picked to finish sixth in the Big West, the predicted low finish served as motivation for the Matadors. The 20 wins included a six-game winning streak, and the 13-3 record to start the season was the team's best start since the 1981-82 campaign. The 12 wins in conference play tied the school record (12-6 in 2004-05).

Winning basketball along with an exciting style of play resulted in a dramatic increase in attendance during the 2007-08 campaign. Eight of the largest crowds since the 1999-00 season attended a Cal State Northridge men's basketball game in 2007-08.

Winning basketball also resulted in increased television exposure. Cal State Northridge was on television a school record eight times. That included games on ESPNU and Fox Sports Prime Ticket.

Following the 2007-08 season, head coach Bobby Braswell was named 2007-08 Big West Coach of the Year.

Several players were also accorded several post-season honors. Jonathan Heard gained first team All-Big West honors while Tremaine Townsend and Deon Tresvant earned second team all-league honors. Josh Jenkins was an Honorable Mention all-league choice.

With three key starters returning along with a total of nine returning lettermen, many pre-season magazines will rank Cal State Northridge as the team to beat in the Big West in 2008-09.

Members of the 2007-08 conference champions were Calvin Chitwood, Rai Colston, Rob Haynes, Jonathan Heard, Josh Jenkins, Michael Lizarraga, Rodrigue Mels, Jayme Miller, Tony Osunsanmi, Evan Scott, Therin Taylor, Tremaine Townsend and Paul Wayne.

Success has certainly become the norm for the Cal State Northridge women's track & field team. For the third consecutive season, the Matador women captured the Big West title which was held for the third straight year at the Matador Track & Field Complex.

The Northridge women scored 189 points and finished well ahead of second place UC Riverside (143).

Despite the intense heat during the two days of competition, the Cal State Northridge women's team performed like champions. The Matador women captured five individual titles and both relay events. Sherrina Lofton, who was voted the Big West Track Athlete of the Year, captured the 100 meters (career best 11.60) and 200 meters (career best 23.50), Krystal Quinn stood atop the victory stand in the pole vault, Shelese Ruffin captured the 400 meters (life time best 53.80), and Raquel Sola won the league hammer title.

The victory in the 100 meters marked the fifth straight season that a Matador student-athlete captured the league title.

The 400 meter relay team of Shaleisha Mitchell, Sherrina Lofton, Tara Prier and Shelese Ruffin finished first, while the 1600 meter relay team of Prier, Ruffin, Desirae Gonder and Lofton were first place winners.

Head coach Don Strametz was named Big West Women's Track & Field Coach of the Year.