Bates Earns a Trio of Player of the Week Awards
Feb. 19, 2013
On the same day the Bruins played an exhibition game against a professional team from Japan, senior B.B. Bates received three Player of the Week awards on Tuesday, earning the conference honor from the Pac-12 and national accolades from the National Fastpitch Coaches Association and USA Softball. Bates becomes the seventh Bruin to record all three awards in the same week.
Bates set and tied a few UCLA records at last weekend's Easton Desert Classic, hitting home runs in all five games, eight total, and batting .706 (12-for-17) with 19 runs batted in and 10 runs scored. She had a 2.176 slugging percentage and a .722 on base percentage.
Bates established a pair of new school records, as she became the first Bruin to hit two home runs in three consecutive games (previous record was two). Her six homers over three games was also a school record (previous mark was four). With homers in five straight, Bates is tied for the UCLA mark for consecutive games leaving the yard.
The great weekend began on Friday against #20 Hawai'i. Bates reached in all four plate appearances on two homers, a single and a walk. Homering in the first inning, a two-run shot, and in the fifth, a three-run bomb that ended the game by mercy rule, the senior, who also stole a base and scored three times, tied a career high with five RBI.
Bates added a pair of two-homer games on Saturday. She again tied a career high with five RBI, going 3-for-4 with two runs scored against San Jose State. The bombs came in each of her last two at-bats, as she hit a solo shot in the fifth and a go-ahead, grand slam in the sixth, the first granny of her career. In game two on Saturday versus Seattle University, she had a pair of two-run homers and added a double in three at-bats, scoring three times.
The senior continued the home run trend on Sunday, leaving the yard in her second at-bat against Louisiana-Monroe and adding an RBI single. She concluded the weekend with a three-run shot in her last at-bat in the sixth inning against Ohio to extend her streak to five games with a long ball.
Bates, who earned her first-career Pac-12 POW nod, joins Anjelica Selden (March 8-9, 2005 and Feb. 26, 2008), Andrea Duran (April 11 and May 2, 2006), Amanda Kamekona (May 6, 2008) and Megan Langenfeld (April 14, 2009) as the only Bruins to earn Pac-10/12, NFCA and USA Softball Player of the Week in the same week (2003 was the first year the USASB POW was awarded). It is the 66th Pac-10/12 Player of the Week award for the Bruins, the 22nd NFCA National POW and the 14th USA Softball National POW.
Tuesday began with Bates and the Bruins taking on the Toyota Women's Softball Team, whose roster includes former Bruin great Natasha Watley. In a spirited, back-and-forth exhibition, UCLA posted a 5-4 victory in five innings.
UCLA, ranked 13th in the latest ESPN.com/USA Softball poll and 16th in this week's NFCA rankings, heads to the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic in Cathedral City, Calif. for five games, starting Friday against #4 Tennessee (3:30 p.m.). The Bruins also take on Maryland (12 p.m.) and Oklahoma State (2:30 p.m.) on Saturday, Feb. 23 and #10 LSU (9 a.m.) and Nevada (11:30 a.m.) on Sunday, Feb. 24.
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