National Collegiate Baseball Writers Feb. 24, 2004
For Immediate Release
Contact: Michael Montoro
601-266-5947
Pac-10 hurlers spin masterpieces
EMU'S BIXLER, CAL'S GOLD AND ASU'S
URQUIDEZ ARE PLAYERS OF THE WEEK

CHICAGO (NCBWA) The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) released its National Hitter and Pitcher of the Week awards for the period ending Feb. 22.

Eastern Michigan junior shortstop Brian Bixler has been named National Hitter of the Week, while Cal sophomore RHP Adam Gold and Arizona State junior RHP Jason Urquidez were named National Co-Pitchers of the Week. The NCBWA Board reviews candidates from each Division I Conference each week and names winners each Tuesday throughout the season.

Bixler batted .714 (10-for-14) with 10 runs, two doubles, two home runs and three RBIs in the three-game weekend series at Kentucky, in which the Eagles took two of three. Bixler had a 1.286 slugging percentage and a .765 on-base percentage. In the series opener, he went 2-for-4 with three runs, a double and a pair of walks in the 14-5 win. On Saturday, he was 4-for-5 with five runs, two RBIs, a walk, a double and a home run, and in Sunday's loss, he was 4-for-5 with a pair of runs, a solo home run in the eighth inning and a stolen base.

Gold was one out away from a no-hitter and finished with a complete game one-hit performance to lead the Golden Bears to a 2-0 victory over Fresno State Feb. 22 at Beiden Field. Gold turned in his first career complete-game performance, while striking out a career-high tying 10 batters. Bulldog senior catcher Brandon Marcelli singled in the hole at short to break up Gold's no-hit bid with two outs in the ninth. It would have been the first no-hitter for a Bear pitcher since Brian Duffy and Steve Kaia combined for a no-hitter Feb. 11, 1978 in a 12-0 victory over Cal State Hayward. It would have been the first individual no-hitter since Bill Frost no-hit Pacific, 3-0, Mar. 15, 1966. Fresno State was shut out for the first time since April 20, 2003 at Hawaii (2-0). Gold is now 3-0 on the season with a 0.68 ERA and has 32 strikeouts in 26.3 innings.

Urquidez had another outstanding performance with his complete-game, three-hit victory over No. 1 Rice at its home ballpark. Urquidez struck out seven and walked only two in ASU's first complete-game effort since Jered Liebeck fired a complete-game shutout against Long Beach State last year (Feb. 1). He went head-to-head with Preseason Pitcher of the Year Jeff Niemann, who dropped his first decision since 2002 (went 17-0 last year). With his performance, Urquidez improved to 3-0 on the year and owns a nearly perfect 0.90 ERA. He has allowed only 12 hits and two earned runs in 20.0 IP while striking out 23 (10.4 per 9.0 IP average).

Founded in 1962, the NCBWA is dedicated to the advancement of college baseball. Membership is open to writers, broadcasters and publicists of the sport. Members receive a membership card, directory, newsletter updates and official votes in the Howser Award Player of the Year, Regional Player of the Year and NCBWA All-America voting. The NCBWA also sponsors preseason All-American awards, publication and writing contests.

2004 NCBWA Division I Players of the Week:
Feb. 10: Josh Brady, Texas Tech (Hitter); Jered Weaver, Long Beach State (Pitcher)
Feb. 17: Seth Johnston, Texas (Hitter); David Purcey, Oklahoma (Pitcher)
Feb. 24: Brian Bixley, Eastern Michigan (Hitter); Adam Gold, California and Jason Urquidez, Arizona State (Pitcher)
March 2: Sean Gaston, Notre Dame and Jed Lowrie, Stanford (Hitter); Derek Duclos, Richmond and Derek Hankins, Memphis (Pitcher)
March 9: Ryan Frith, Southern Miss and Stephen Head, Ole Miss (Hitter); Clay Dirks, LSU and Jim Ripley, Kansas State (Pitcher)
March 16: Connor Robertson, Birmingham-Southern (Hitter); Cliff Russum, Southern Miss (Pitcher)
March 23: Jonathan Batts, UNC Wilmington and Rielly Embrey, San Diego State (Hitter); Jarame Beaupre, Delaware and Matt Daley, Bucknell (Pitcher)
March 30: Warner Jones, Vanderbilt (Hitter); Steve Grasley, Creighton and Jered Weaver, Long Beach State (Pitcher)
April 6: Grant Richardson, Washington State (Hitter); Dennis Bigley, Oral Roberts (Pitcher)
April 13: Brad Corley, Mississippi State (Hitter); Brian Bogusevic, Tulane (Pitcher)
April 20: Todd Kimling, Eastern Michigan and Daniel Stovall, New Mexico (Hitter); Tim Layden, Duke and J.P. Howell, Texas (Pitcher)
April 27: Nic Crosta, Santa Clara and Richard Gianotto, Miami (Hitter); Matt Campbell, South Carolina and Zack Zuercher, Rhode Island (Pitcher)
May 4: Brian Hall, Stanford and Kurt Suzuki, Cal State Fullerton (Hitter); Zac Cline, West Virginia and Arik Hempy, South Carolina (Pitcher)
May 11: Justin Holmes, Georgia and Lee McLean, UNC Wilmington (Hitter); Tim Lincecum, Washington and Jered Weaver, Long Beach State (Pitcher)
May 18: Steve Cavarati, Ohio State and Eric Nielsen, UNLV (Hitter); Mike Rogers and Vern Sterry, N.C. State (Pitcher)
May 25: Josh Ford, Baylor and Andy Hudak, Bowling Green (Hitter); Greg Bunn, East Carolina and Jason Windsor, Cal State Fullerton (Pitcher)