March 29, 2010

CSUN Sweeps Weekly Big West Softball Awards

March 29, 2010

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. -

Karla Chaparro and Hannah Fraijo were named the Big West Conference Player and Pitcher of the Week, respectively, the league office announced Monday. Chaparro batted .714 (5-of-7) with two doubles and three RBIs while Fraijo won both games as the Matadors swept a doubleheader against Utah.

The Matadors have been on a tear lately, having gone 15-7 (.682) over their past 22 games to even their record at 16-16. During the span, CSUN has registered wins over Oklahoma, Mississippi State, San Diego State and Iowa, all of whom participated in the 2009 NCAA Tournament.

Chaparro has been especially hot at the plate over the stretch. In her last 10 games, she is batting .357 to raise her season mark to a career-high .270. She is second on the team and in the Big West Conference with her career-high seven doubles.

"It's surprising, but it feels very good to receive this honor," Chaparro said. "I started the season struggling a little bit, but now I am more relaxed at the plate. I feel like I am at the perfect place heading into the start of the league season."

In addition to her average, she has also set a new career high with her 13 runs scored. Chaparro adds to that with 24 hits, nine RBIs, four sac bunts and two stolen bases. She has also played exceptional defense at shortstop for CSUN, sporting a .967 fielding percentage with 54 putouts and 62 assists.

Equaling Chaparro's recent performance at the plate has been Fraijo's pitching in the circle. She picked up both wins against the Utes, tossing 13.1 innings and allowing only two earned runs and six hits. The week before, she recorded complete game shutouts of Oklahoma, then ranked eighth in the nation, and Cal State Bakersfield.

"It feels good to be recognized and the honor shows that hard work pays off," Fraijo said. "I expect a lot of myself and that effort has helped me get to where I am."

For the year, Fraijo is 8-5 with a 3.21 ERA and 63 strikeouts in 91.2 innings of work. She also limited opponents to a .253 batting average for the season and owns a 1.28 WHIP. Among league pitchers, she ranks fourth in ERA, fifth in opposing batting average and second in wins.

"It is really exciting to be playing this well heading into the start of Big West play," Fraijo added. "It's time for our team to show that our team is here for business."

It is the first time Chaparro has earned the award and she is the second Matador player to win the award. Christina Saenz earned the award on Mar. 1. This is also Fraijo's first career award and she is the first Matador pitcher to receive the award since Debbie Duran earned it on Mar. 16, 2009.

The Matadors open league play this week, hosting UC Davis in a three-game series. On Friday, Apr. 2, the teams will play a doubleheader starting at noon. The next day, Apr. 3, the teams will square off in a single game also at noon. All three games will be played at Matador Diamond.