Feb. 13, 2009

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Fresno State Finds Top Spot in WAC Preseason Poll

Mendonca, Alexander Earn Individual Honors


Fresno State is the favorite to win the 2009 Western Athletic Conference crown, in voting by the league’s head coaches and released by the conference office.


The defending national champion Bulldogs received five first-place votes and 34 points. Fresno State was 47-31 a season ago and won its third straight regular season and tournament titles. Bulldog junior third baseman Tom Mendonca was named the Preseason Player of the Year. He hit .281 in 2008 with 19 home runs and 70 RBI.


San Jose State got one first-place vote and 29 points to take second place. Nevada was a close third with 26 points. Hawaii received the final first-place vote and got 25 points for fourth place, followed by New Mexico State, Louisiana Tech and Sacramento State.


Senior Jared Alexander of Hawaii was voted the Preseason Pitcher of the Year. He posted a 7-3 mark in 2008 with a 3.27 ERA.


All seven conference teams begin play on Feb. 20. The top six teams will advance to the WAC Tournament, which will be held May 21-24 at Hawaii’s Les Murakami Stadium in Honolulu.


WAC Preseason Poll

1. Fresno State (5) 34

2. San Jose State (1) 29

3. Nevada 26

4. Hawaii (1) 25

5. New Mexico State 14

6. Louisiana Tech 13

7. Sacramento State 6


Preseason Player of the Year: Tommy Mendonca, Jr., Fresno State (pictured above)

Preseason Pitcher of the Year: Jared Alexander, Sr., Hawaii


Preseason All-WAC Team

OF - Gavin Hedstrom, Sr., Fresno State

OF - Steve Detwiler, Jr., Fresno State (pictured right)

OF - Richard Stout, Sr., New Mexico State

OF - Tim Wheeler, Jr., Sacramento State

1B - Shaun Kort, Jr., Nevada

2B - Matt Bowman, Sr., Nevada

SS - Danny Muno, So., Fresno State

3B - Tommy Mendonca, Jr., Fresno State

C - Landon Hernandez, Sr., Hawaii

UT - Tyson Jaquez, Sr., Nevada

SP - Jared Alexander, Sr., Hawaii

SP - Tyler Sturdevant, Sr., New Mexico State

SP - Max Peterson, Jr., San Jose State

RP - Josh Slaats, So., Hawaii

RP - Erik Nyquist, Sr., New Mexico State


(photos courtesy of Fresno State Media Relations Office)