Lewis named ACCAC Division II Baseball Pitcher of the Week
Sophomore righthander fires 5-hit shutout to earn regional accolade for first time
Phoenix, Arizona – April 2, 2014 -- Phoenix College is proud to announce that PC Baseball player Matt Lewis has been named the ACCAC DII Baseball Pitcher of the Week for the week ending March 29th. It’s the first time in Lewis’s two-year Bears’ career that he’s won the award, and he becomes the first Bears’ pitcher to win the award since current teammate Brandon Hudson won the award almost exactly one year ago. Lewis is also the third Bears’ Baseball player this season to earn an ACCAC Player of the Week honor, following the leads of Zach Stierstorfer and Nick Ryan, who won Hitter of the Week Awards earlier this season.
Lewis has been waiting for his gradual improvement throughout the season to finally start showing up in the win column. Bears’ Head Baseball Coach Kevin Kimball made sure that his pitching staff wouldn’t be taxed early in the season by keeping them to limited pitch counts, which meant that Lewis’s first two starts of the year lasted between four and five innings. Once the Desert Mountain High School alum was allowed to extend his pitch count, he started becoming one of the ironmen of the Bears’ starting rotation, going not less than 6 innings in five of his last six starts. Finally, with the Bears’ increasingly effective offense providing more support for him over the past couple of weeks, his first two wins of the season have arrived. This past Saturday, though, it wouldn’t have mattered how many runs his offense game him, since Lewis was as stingy as he’d been all season. The victims were 1st-place (and defending ACCAC Regular Season Champion) Central Arizona College, who managed just five hits (all singles) against Lewis in the seven-inning affair. The 11th-ranked Vaqueros’ only scoring threat of the game came in the 5th, when they loaded the bases with one out, but Lewis promptly forced the next two CAC hitters to pop up in the infield to end the threat. Lewis struck out the side in the 3rdinning, and only got stronger as the game wore on, retiring 7 of the final eight hitters to face him in recording the 6-0 victory. Lewis picked up his first complete-game win of the season, striking out five while walking just two. It was the second straight win of the year for Lewis, who is now 2-3 overall with an earned run average of 3.21. Lewis is also now 2nd on the team in strikeouts with 26.
After falling to the Gateway Geckos last night at home, Lewis and the Bears will now embark on their longest road trip of the season beginning this afternoon at 3PM against the Geckos at Gene Autry Park in Mesa. The six-game trek will take the Bears to Scottsdale this weekend and then Eastern Arizona College (in Thatcher) and Chandler-Gilbert next week before they finally return home to finish out the two-game set with CGCC next Saturday, April 12th. First pitch between the Bears and Coyotes that night is scheduled for 6PM at Marich Field on the PC campus (1202 West Thomas Road in Phoenix), and admission prices are as follows: $5 for adults; $3 for students with a valid ID; and kids 12 and under get in FREE.