Long Beach Again Wins Big West Commissioner’s Cup
Long Beach State earned the Big West Conference Commissioner’s Cup once again after tallying the best point average during the 2011-12 season. The 49ers recorded a 140.0-point average, the highest average ever achieved by any school in the award’s history. It is the university’s second consecutive cup and fourth overall for the program.
The award, which started during the 1998-99 season, is presented at the end of the spring season to the institution with the top overall point average tallied from Big West Conference championships. Total points are summed and divided by the number of championships in which each institution competes. Each sport champion is also given a 20-point bonus.
The 49ers picked up significant points thanks to Big West championships in women’s volleyball, men’s basketball, women’s tennis and softball. Second place finishes in women’s soccer, women’s cross country, men’s golf and men’s track also added to the high point tally.
UC Davis came in second place with a 115.6-point average.
Men’s Golf Picks Up Honors
Mickey Yokoi’s accomplishments during his inaugural season as 49er men’s golf coach earned him Big West Coach of the Year honors as his team was invited to the NCAA Athens Regional Tournament in Georgia.
Player Philip Chian took top individual score at the event which qualified him as an individual to compete the NCAA Championship at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, where he finished 130th.
The 49ers came in second at the Big West Tournament and the conference later named Xander Schauffele as Big West Freshman of the Year, joining seniors Kevin Lim and Kevin Roy on the All-Big West First Team.
Women’s Sand Volleyball Takes Second in Inaugural National Championship
Women’s sand volleyball made its debut as an NCAA intercollegiate sport this past season and not surprisingly, two 49er women’s pairs were selected to compete at the national championship tournament in April hosted by the American Volleyball Coaches Association in Gulf Shores, Ala.
The tournament included team and individual national championship matches, both of which ended up with 49ers Caitlin Ledoux and Tara Roenicke coming in second place to Pepperdine University. As a result of their performance, Ledoux and Roenicke were named among the first sand volleyball All-Americans.
The 49er pair of Haleigh Hampton and Chelsea Cabrajac also earned a spot in the pairs event. Other 49ers in the tournament were the pairs of Delainey Aigner-Swesey and Libby Fontanilla, Lauren Minkel and Jocelyn Neely, and Tyler Jackson and Janisa Johnson.
Track Athletes Compete in NCAA Outdoor Championships
Senior high jumper Katrina Graves-Johnson and senior javelin thrower Ben Woodruff earned the right to represent the 49ers at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Des Moines, Iowa, in June.
Woodruff’s best throw of 67.52m (221-10) put him in 19th place overall. He came to the competition after placing seventh at the NCAA West preliminaries. Earlier, he secured his second consecutive Big West title in the javelin and being named the 2012 Big West Men’s Field Athlete of the Year.
Graves-Johnson came in in 21st in the high jump. She previously earned second-team All-America following the indoor track and field season.
Both athletes received honorable mention All-American recognition for their accomplishments this season.
Three Dirtbags Picked in Baseball Draft
Two Major League Baseball teams selected three Long Beach State players—the 23rd consecutive year that the university has seen its players chosen by pro teams.
The San Francisco Giants selected junior shortstop Matt Duffy, who played in the Cape Cod League in summer 2011 and made its All-Star team; and senior center fielder Brennan Metzger, a first-team All-Big West outfielder this season after leading the Dirtbags in batting average (.302), doubles (12), RBI (37), and stolen bases (11).
The Colorado Rockies chose pitcher Shawn Stuart, a second-team All-Big West selection.