MESA, Ariz. - Two New Mexico State baseball players earned 2010 All-Western Athletic Conference honors as announced at the WAC Baseball Tournament Banquet in Mesa, Ariz., Tuesday, May 25.
Senior first baseman Leo Aguirre was named to the first team and junior shortstop Ryan Aguayo was named to the second team. Head coach Rocky Ward knows how valuable both players were to the team this season.
"Aguirre had really good numbers for us this year" Ward said. "The coaches vote for the teams based on conference numbers which makes sense if you think about it but a lot of the national awards that should be based on season numbers require an All-Conference selection, so the selection is good for him. He is a four-year guy and we haven't seen a lot of those lately at New Mexico State, so it is nice to see him win an award for all of the hard work he has put in over the years."
Aguirre finished the regular season with a .400 batting average, which is tops in the league and hit .354 in WAC play. He tallied 86 hits on the year with 19 doubles and 11 home runs. In conference play, Aguirre finished with 34 hits and 26 RBI. Aguirre led the Aggie offense going 4-of-6 with seven RBI and two home runs against Louisiana Tech as NM State won its 10th straight conference game, May 2. One of his homers was a grand slam in the third inning, which was the big inning that deflated the Louisiana Tech hopes of a comeback. In that inning, NM State posted 11 runs on 11 hits while 15 Aggie batters came to the plate.
Aguayo, who is a finalist for the Brooks Wallace Award (nation's top shortstop) was a second-team selection after hitting .354 on the year and tallying a conference-high 90 hits on the year. In league play, Aguayo posted a team-leading 87 assists while also marking 40 putouts. He had 33 hits against conference opponents, with four doubles, one triple, three homers and 26 RBI. Aguayo was the third Aggie to tally an RBI blasting his 11th home run of the season as the Aggies hammered out nine runs on 12 hits defeating Sacramento State 9-3 at Hornet Field in Sacramento, Calif., Saturday, April 24.
"Aguayo really positioned himself well to get on the second team this year" Ward said. "He hasn't been in the program as long as Aguirre, but as a junior it is great to see him recognized for the great season he had for us this year.
"As the second-place team in the league, I was disappointed we didn't have more guys recognized by the league's coaches. I thought we had several guys that were deserving of recognition. We voted a little differently this year than in the past. We had a couple injuries this season and we had guys step into those roles and play very well. The good thing is we got two this year and there is time for some of our younger guys that played well to be up there getting awards in the future."The Aggies have a first-round bye and will take on the highest-winning seed from Wednesday's games. NM State's first game is scheduled for Thursday, May 27 at 4:00