Softball's Ashley Esparza Named Big Ten Pitcher of the Week
March 25, 2008
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Senior Ashley Esparza (San Pedro, Calif./San Pedro) of the Penn State University softball team was named the Big Ten Pitcher of the Week the conference office announced yesterday (March 24). Esparza is the second Nittany Lion to receive Pitcher of the Week this season as Jackie Hill (San Jose, Calif./Leigh) received the honor last week. This marks the first time in school history to receive the award twice in one season.
Esparza had a great weekend as she picked up a win and a save in her two appearances on the mound. She went a combined 10.0 innings in the circle while striking out 10 and allowing just one earned run. In her first appearances she pitched 3.0 innings of relief while striking out four and not allowing a hit against Youngstown State. She started the very next game going the full seven innings picking up a win versus Miami (Ohio). She added six more strikeouts in that victory and allowed only one walk in all 10.0 innings.
Esparza also went 5-for-12 at the plate picking up two RBIs along with two runs scored. She had two hits in both the win over Toledo and the win over Youngstown State.
On the year, Esparza is currently leading the Nittany Lion pitching staff with a 0.97 ERA with eight wins and 107 strikeouts. She is averaging 8.0 strikeouts per game and has pitched nine complete games with three shutouts.