Riggs, Paisley Sweep C-USA Awards
April 4, 2011
IRVING, Texas – After claiming its first Conference USA series sweep of the season, East Carolina received both the league’s weekly awards. Junior Suzanne Riggs was named the C-USA Hitter-of-the-Week and senior Toni Paisley was tabbed Co-Pitcher-of-the-Week according to an announcement Monday by league officials.
The honor is the first of the season for both individuals and the initial award in Riggs’ career. For Paisley, she ties Houston pitcher Angel Shamblin (2005-08) and DePaul hurler Lindsay Chouinard (2000-03) for the most all-time selections for a C-USA softball player with 16.
Riggs powered the Pirate offense to a three-game sweep of Southern Miss over the weekend, leading the team with six runs batted in, a .500 batting average, five hits, two doubles, a .700 slugging percentage and a .583 on-base percentage. The junior left fielder had two RBI in each contest, drew a pair of walks and did not strike out.
During the opener, Riggs drove in two runs with a single in the fourth inning to give ECU a 5-0 lead. In the nightcap, she put the game out of reach with a double to left field in the fifth, giving the Pirates another 5-0 advantage. The Greenville native reached base in three of her four plate appearances in the second contest with a double, single and walk.
Sunday, Riggs delivered the game-winning run with a first-inning double to left field that drove in a pair. The two hits in the second and third contests, and the two RBI in all three games, were Conference USA career-high marks for Riggs.
In the circle, Paisley went 2-0 and threw a near perfect game in the series opener. She settled for the sixth no-hitter of her career as a fielding error with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning ended the bid for perfection. The six no-hitters leave her one behind Chouinard for the all-time C-USA record. Paisley struck out 12 in the contest, 10 from the third inning on, in throwing her nation-leading 12th solo shutout of the season. In addition, the no-hitter was Paisley’s second in her last three starts at Southern Miss as she blanked the Golden Eagles in the first game of the March 14, 2009, doubleheader. The Lakewood, Calif., native followed with another victory Sunday, allowing four singles and one run while striking out eight in six innings.
For the series, she struck out 20 and issued one walk as the Golden Eagles hit only .089 against her. The two victories at Southern Miss gave Paisley 107 in her career, leaving her just one short of Chouinard for the C-USA all-time record. In addition, Paisley picked up her 53rd career shutout in game one Saturday.
Paisley shares the Conference USA Pitcher-of-the-Week award with Tulsa’s Aimee Creger, who threw a no-hitter at Memphis Saturday.
Riggs, Paisley and the Pirates (28-10) return to action Wednesday for a 5:00 p.m. nonconference game at UNC Wilmington (8-28). East Carolina is looking to extend its recent success against in-state opponents, having claimed the last 16 matchups versus programs from North Carolina and outscoring them 103-12.