Ramos, Cobb receive big-time Big West honors

Senior second baseman Christine Ramos was named Big West Co-Field Player of the Year and Krista Cobb earned Freshman Co-Pitcher of the Year honors it was announced on Tuesday afternoon by the conference. Three additional Gauchos also picked up all-conference nods – sophomore Katie McWhirter, junior Jessica Ziegler and senior Tiffany Wright.

Christine Ramos has been considered one of the top leadoff hitters in the Big West and the country and her senior season did nothing to dispel that notion. The native of Long Beach, Calif., led the Big West and set career-highs in hitting (.417) and base hits (75). Her batting average ranks 32nd in the NCAA and she is also one of the nation’s toughest strikeouts victims as she only goes down on strikes .044 percent of the time, 21st on the national leaderboard.

Ramos also showed she’s a threat on the basepaths with a league-leading 16 steals, while also adding 31 runs scored and 19 RBI. On the Big West career leaderboard, Ramos broke into the top-10 career hits list this season and finishes sixth with 258 base hits. Ramos is the Gaucho’s second straight Field Player of the Year – Tiffany Wright earned the honor in 2008 – and the third straight UCSB player to claim one of the conference’s major awards.

She ends her career as the Gauchos most prolific batter, leading the team in hits all of her seasons in the blue and gold, the first UCSB player to ever accomplish the feat. This season she set the school record for single season hits, career hits, single season batting average and career batting average (.364). She is tied third in the UCSB record books in career stolen bases (52), fourth in career runs (116) and career triples (6), second in career at-bats (709) and tied eighth in stolen bases in a season.

She shares the honor with Long Beach State’s Jennifer Griffin. In addition to the player of the year honor, Ramos was also named to the All-Big West First Team for the third consecutive season. She has been an all-conference selection all four years, earning second team accolades as a freshman.

Krista Cobb earned Freshman Co-Pitcher of the Year honors after a stellar rookie campaign. The West Hills, Calif., native had one of the finest seasons by a pitcher in program history. She is tied for third on the league leaderboard in wins (18) – which ties the school record for single season victories – is eighth in innings pitched (148.2), sixth in ERA (1.93) and strikeouts (115) and is tops in opponent batting average (.204). Cobb is the winningest freshman in Gaucho history and shut out nine foes this year, four of them coming in conference action.

She also earned Big West Pitcher of the Week honors on four occasions during the season and posted the first-ever perfect game in program history against Wagner during her first collegiate start. She shares Freshman Pitcher of the Year honors with Long Beach State’s Taylor Petty. Cobb earned All-Big West First Team honors in addition to her pitcher of the year nod.

Joining Ramos and Cobb on the All-Big West First Team is sophomore designated player, Katie McWhirter. The Monrovia, Calif. native batted .287 on the season and was third on the team with a .300 average in Big West games. She tallied nine runs, two doubles, eight RBI and had a .340 on-base percentage. She had four multiple-hit showings in conference games, and went 6-for-10 in the three-game series against league champions Cal Poly. This is the first career honor for McWhirter.

Tiffany Wright earned her third career All-Big West honor, as she was named to the league’s second team. The senior outfielder batted .263 on the season and led the Big West in runs scored with 35. She ranked third on the conference leaderboard in RBI (38), fifth in home runs (7) and ninth in total bases (72).

She finished her career ranked seventh on the Big West’s all-time home runs top-10 list with her UCSB career record of 30 homers. She ranks third in the Gaucho record books in career runs (117) and in career RBI (124), fourth in career doubles (34) and fifth for career hits (189) and at-bats (649). Her .291 career batting average ranks eighth all-time in UCSB history.

Rounding out the list of All-Big West honorees is junior first baseman, Jessica Ziegler. The honor marks the second league accolade for the San Diego, Calif. native, she earned an honorable mention nod in 2008. This season, Ziegler batted a career-high .335, ranking second on the team and eighth in the Big West. She was second only to Ramos for hits this season with 60, ranked fourth with 10 sacrifice bunts and was seventh with nine stolen bases.

The junior finished the season with a .997 fielding percentage, ranking seventh in the conference. She was fifth overall in both chances (348) and putouts (199).

The Gauchos finished the 2009 season with a 26-25 record, marking the program’s seventh consecutive winning season. UCSB finished conference play with a 9-12 mark, tying Cal State Northridge for fourth place.

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