CSU's Fisher, McCarthy earn top Mountain West honors

May 15, 2012

By Nic Hallisey
Athletic Media Relations

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.—The Mountain West announced its 2012 softball all-conference team and postseason awards Tuesday, and at the top of the list were junior Kacie McCarthy and Head Coach Jen Fisher. McCarthy was named the league’s Pitcher of the Year, while Fisher earned Coach of the Year honors. The selections were determined by the league’s five head coaches.

Four other Rams were also honored, as Chelsea Biglow, Ashlie Ortega, Emily Pohl and Lyssa Roberts were each named to the all-Mountain West team. It was each player’s first selection.

“There’s really something to be said about having five players on that list,” Fisher said. “I feel like it’s tough for players to slide in there, so I'm really proud of each player."

The five selections tied a program record, also doing so in 2004, 2005 and 2010.

“We went through a lot last season, so for returners like Chelsea, Emily and Lyssa to be recognized, I’m extra enthused for them. Ashlie and Kacie, being transfers, they believed in the possibilities and really bought into what we were doing here, which I think helped the returners believe in themselves. I’m thrilled that they’re being recognized.”

In just her second year at the helm of the program, Fisher collected her first MW coaching honor after guiding CSU to an 8-4 record and second-place tie in MW play this season. The Rams, who were predicted to finish last in the league in 2012, closed out their MW slate with a six-game win streak (seven overall) en route to their best performance since winning the regular-season title in 2004.

“First, you could say every coach in our conference was deserving,” Fisher said. “I’m completely humbled to be in that group. I see this as a staff award; the credit goes to the entire coaching and volunteer staff, and of course, the buy-in from our players. A coach can only be as effective as the buy-in from the players, and they really pushed us this year.”

Fisher is the second CSU skipper to earn MW Coach of the Year honors, joining Mary Yori, who received back-to-back awards in 2003 and 2004.

McCarthy, a Shingletown, Calif., product, is the first Ram hurler to earn MW Pitcher of the Year accolades.

"It's really just an honor," she said. "When the coaching staff called and told me the news, I was shocked, surprised and excited to be recognized. When you're working hard and doing your best all season, getting an accolade like this feels special."

This season, she went 5-3 in conference play, compiling an earned run average of 2.61 and recording a league-best six complete games. The right-hander also led the MW in opposing batting average (.218) while ranking second in innings pitched (51.0) and fourth in strikeouts (28). Overall, the junior went 17-8 with 16 complete games.

“First and foremost, Kacie brought such a positive attitude to the circle,” Fisher said about the team ace. “She never saw errors as they were happening. Her positive outlook and energy radiated throughout the team. She’s an exceptional representative for our softball team, and the credit goes to Kacie, the staff and Coach Pendleton. I think the fact that we had so much depth on our pitching staff helped take pressure off Kacie, helping her not feel like she had to carry the team.”

Biglow, a sophomore from Tigard, Ore., hit. 389 in conference action with three home runs, 11 RBIs and a .694 slugging percentage. Overall on the season she recorded a team-most 45 RBIs and tied for the team lead with nine home runs.

Ortega, a junior shortstop who transferred from the University of Missouri, ranked third in the league with 19 conference hits. She hit .422 with eight runs and nine RBIs.

Pohl, CSU’s starting catcher, ranked second in the league with nine walks and third with 14 RBIs against conference opponents. She hit .344 with four dingers (tied for fifth), in addition to a .813 slugging percentage and .511 on-base percentage.

Roberts, the only senior on the list and a Parker, Colo., native, stepped up her game tremendously in conference play, hitting a team-high .447 and driving in 10, including the game-winner against New Mexico last weekend.

Boise State sophomore Kayla Glover and San Diego State sophomore Hayley Miles shared MW Player of the Year honors, while San Diego State’s Kayla Jordan garnered MW Freshman of the Year accolades.

The Rams finished their 2012 campaign with a record of 29-22, a 21-win improvement from a year ago. It’s 8-4 finish in conference games was marked the first time in eight years that CSU has finished with a winning conference record.

All but two players, including four of the five student-athletes listed above, will return for the 2013 season.

“I told all of my players during our individual meetings to enjoy this for two weeks, and then get back after it,” Fisher said. “Mr. (Jack) Graham keeps talking about developing high-character people, but also winners on the field; I think that’s possible with this group. We had a solid year, but there’s no time to rest. We’re excited to keep going.”


Name Team Position     
Devon Bridges Boise State OF SO
Kellie Caplan Boise State 2B SR
Tara Glover Boise State OF SO
Aubray Zell Boise State RHP SR
Chelsea Biglow Colorado State       
Kacie McCarthy Colorado State RHP JR
Ashlie Ortega Colorado State SS SO
Emily Pohl Colorado State C SO
Lyssa Roberts Colorado State OF SR
Chelsea Anaya New Mexico 2B/SS SO
Stefanie Carramussa !     New Mexico 3B JR
Jessica Garcia New Mexico C SR
Rebecca Arbino San Diego State RHP JR
Patrice Jackson San Diego State OF SO
Kayla Jordan San Diego State OF FR
Justeen Maeva % San Diego State 1B SR
Bailey Micetich !^ San Diego State RHP SR
Hayley Miles ! San Diego State SS SO
Paige Emerson ! UNLV OF SR
Stefany Valentino UNLV OF SO

Co-Players of the Year:

Tara Glover, Boise State
Hayley Miles, San Diego State
Pitcher of the Year:
Kacie McCarthy, Colorado State
Freshman of the Year:
Kayla Jordan, San Diego State

Coach of the Year:

Jen Fisher, Colorado State
!   2011 all-MW selection
% 2010 all-MW selection
^  2009 all-MW selection