Big West honors Valentine for her triple-double

UCSB center Mekia Valentine was honored on Monday, a day after accomplishing a feat that had never been done before at the school. The 6-foot-4 senior had UCSB’s first ever triple-double and was named the Big West’s Player of the Week, the conference announced.

Valentine had 15 points, 12 rebounds and 10 blocked shots in Sunday’s 63-54 win over Northern Colorado. She was also honored as the Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table’s Female Athlete of the Week.

It is the first such conference honor for Valentine, who was a Second Team All-Big West pick last season and an All-Big West Tournament Team selection.

Through the Gauchos’ first five games she is averaging 9.0 points, 9.8 rebounds and 4.6 blocks per game. UCSB opens at two-game road trip at St. Mary’s on Thursday in a 7 p.m. game. The Gauchos won’t return home until Dec. 11 when they host UTEP.