University of Hawai'i softball player Tayana Mata was named the Big West Field Player of the Week after coming off the bench to infuse the Rainbow Wahine offense with key clutch hitting to propel UH to their first conference series win. It is the first weekly conference honor for Mata.
Mata, a senior second baseman from Folsom, Calif., was called upon to pinch hit in the sixth inning with her team trailing by one run in the series' opener. Mata delivered a game-tying RBI single with two runners aboard and two outs, driving in Keiki Carlos from second base. Later in the eighth inning, Mata came through again as she knocked in Carlos for the go-ahead run with another two-out RBI single. She finished the game 2-for-2 with a run scored and two RBIs.
Mata got the start at second base in both games of Saturday's doubleheader, and she contributed heavily in the clutch. She notched her third two-out, RBI single in the series to give UH a 1-0 lead in the third inning of an eventual 3-2 win. Mata collected her fourth RBI of the series with an RBI double down the left field line to give the Rainbow Wahine a 2-1 lead.
In the final game of the series, she went 1-for-3 to give her a .556 (5-for-9) average for the series in which she alone accounted for five of UH's eight runs scored.
Mata joins teammate Kanani Aina Cabrales as the only other Rainbow Wahine to earn the Big West's weekly honor this season. Cabrales was named BWC Pitcher of the Week in Week 1.
The Rainbow Wahine (20-22, 4-5 Big West) return to Honolulu to host league-leader Cal State Fullerton (34-10, 9-0 BWC) this week. The two teams will square off in a single game on Friday night at 6:00 p.m. and conclude the three-game series with a doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 2:00 p.m. Saturday's DH is also Power in Pink Day at the ballpark in honor of breast cancer awareness.
Big West Conference Release
Hawaii News Now
420 Waiakamilo Road, Suite 205
Honolulu, HI 96817
Main (808) 847-3246
News (808) 847-1112