April 5, 2005
Malibu, Calif. - Five Pepperdine student-athletes were honored by the West Coast Conference (WCC)as "Players of the Month", it was announced on Tuesday. Baseball playere Kea Kometani and David Uribes, men's golfer Michael Putnam, women's golfer Eileen Vargas and men's tennis player Pedro Rico were all recognized for their performances during the month of March.
Baseball: Senior right hander Kometani and junior second baseman David Uribes shared the West Coast Conference's (WCC) "Pitcher of the Month" and "Player of the Month" honors for March, respectively. Kometani pitched two complete games in four starts, going 4-0 with a 1.04 ERA. In 34.2 innings pitched, he allowed 35 hits, four earned runs, struck out 26 and held opponents to a .259 batting average. Kometani worked at least eight innings in all four starts and posted wins over No. 5 South Carolina and No. 30 Winthrop. Against the fifth-ranked Gamecocks, Kometani worked 8.2 innings, scattered 11 hits, allowed two earned runs, did not walk a batter, and struck out a career-high 10 batters.
Uribes posted a conference-leading .426 batting average, seven stolen bases, and 17 runs scored. The junior second baseman also tied for fourth in the conference with 23 hits in the month and recorded the seventh-best on-base percentage at .458. Uribes added 10 RBI, five doubles, one triple, and one home run in the month. The West Covina, Calif. native committed just one error in 50 chances for an impressive .980 fielding percentage from his middle infield position. Uribes had eight multi-hit games, scored two or more runs in six games, hit safely in 10 of 13 games, and had an eight-game hitting streak. Uribes led Pepperdine to an 11-2 overall record in the month and a 5-0 record to open up WCC play.
Men's Golf: Senior Michael Putnam registered two top 5 finishes in three tournaments during the month of March. The Tacoma, Washington product tied for individual medalist honors at the Oregon Duck Invitational after rounds of 70-66-72 for an 8-under score of 208. Putnam then had a second place performance at the National Invitational Tournament. Putnam shot rounds of 67-72-66 for an 11-under 205. The score of 205 ties for sixth lowest for a 54-hole score in Pepperdine history. In eight rounds, Putnam recorded a 69.75 stroke average and had seven rounds of par or better. Putnam was also named one of 10 semifinalists for the 2005 Ben Hogan Award, which is presented annually to the top men's player. Putnam won WCC Golfer of the Month honors for his efforts during the month of February.
Women's Golf: Sophomore Eileen Vargas posted a second place finish at the UNLV Spring Invitational in her lone tournament of the month. The Ibaque, Colombia native carded rounds of 74-75-72 for a 5-over total of 221 to finish one shot out of first place. Pepperdine took home second place at the UNLV Invitational. Vargas also won WCC honors for the month of February.
Men's Tennis: Pepperdine junior All-American Pedro Rico notched five consecutive wins to close out the month of March and posted an overall 5-1 singles record, playing in the Waves' strong number two spot. Rico played a key role in the team's undefeated 7-0 month, which catapulted the Waves to No. 7 in the ITA rankings, their highest of the season. Highlighting Rico's big month was a three-set win over Illinois' No. 24 Kevin Anderson. Rico won 0-6, 7-6, 7-6 to help Pepperdine to a 5-2 upset of the No. 2 Illini. Earlier in the month, the Alicante, Spain native defeated No. 59 Lennart Maack of California.