Raiders won their first-ever NAIA National Championship in May
For immediate release
PORTLAND, Oregon (July 30) -- A George Pasero Team of the Year award is making its way south on Interstate-5 to Ashland for the third time in Oregon Sports Awards history.
Southern Oregon softball, which captured its first-ever NAIA National Championship two months ago, was named one of three George Pasero Teams of the Year on Tuesday. The honor is reserved for teams that have won a national and/or world championship or received national acclaim.
SOU softball’s Pasero trophy announcement comes four years since the school last received the honor, which was incepted in 2007, for the first time. The Raiders’ football team won the award in 2015 after finishing as the runner-up in the 2014 NAIA National Championship.
Raiders head coach Jessica Pistole called in to NBC Sports Northwest’s weekday talk show “The Noe Show” with Brian Noe on Tuesday to officially accept the award. Click here to access a highlight reel of Pistole’s interview.
Sport Oregon, which manages the Oregon Sports Awards, and NBC Sports Northwest also announced Oregon Institute of Technology women’s cross country and University of Oregon women’s basketball as George Pasero Teams of the Year on Tuesday.
The Raiders put together a historic 2019 season for both SOU and the state of Oregon. SOU became the first school to advance to the NAIA World Series Championship since Corban University finished as the runner-up for the National Championship in 2017.
The Raiders claimed the national title with an 8-3 win over third-seeded Oklahoma City University in a decisive third game of a best-of-three championship series.
SOU was 7-1 in the postseason play, sweeping its opening round and beginning the NAIA World Series with two straight wins to advance to the National Championship.
SOU finished the regular season with a 45-7 overall record – 24-3 in conference play – and notched Cascade Collegiate Conference (CCC) regular season and tournament championships. The Raiders became the first team in six years to finish CCC regular season play with fewer than four losses.
The team then won a league-record third straight CCC tournament title on May 5. The Raiders entered postseason play as the No. 4 overall seed.
SOU was presented with numerous individual awards following its championship parade on June 4 in Ashland. Pistole received NAIA Coach of the Year and CCC Coach of Character honors. Pistole and assistants Cheyenne Bricker, Harlee Donovan, Mike Mayben and Duane Pardue were also presented with the NFCA NAIA Coaching Staff of the Year Award.
Three players – third baseman Lauren Quirke, pitcher Gabby Sandoval and catcher Allie Stines – were named NAIA All-Americans. Sandoval (36-4, 1.19 ERA) and Stines (.400, 78 hits, 52 RBI) were first team selections.
Sandoval, too, was named the Schutt Sports/NFCA NAIA Pitcher of the Year. She set SOU records for wins, shutouts (15) and strikeouts (207).
The Raiders athletic department chose Sandoval to represent the team on the Oregon Sports Awards’ Ad Rutschman Small College Female Athlete of the Year ballot. George Fox outgoing senior Annie Wright, who was named the Division III track and field athlete of the year, won and was presented with the award on July 17.
Quirke (.453, 91 hits, 63 RBI) was named the NAIA World Series MVP. She pitched in relief of Sandoval as well and made occasional spots starts throughout the season. Quirke had a 7-1 record with a 4.55 ERA in the circle.
SOU softball posted a 3.39 grade point average for the 2018-2019 academic year.
Sport Oregon and NBC Sports Northwest have partnered to announce all awards on live television throughout July. Award announcements began on July 8 and conclude on Wednesday with winner reveals for the Prep Boys Basketball Player of the Year, Prep Girls X-Country Runner of the Year, Prep Girls Track and Field Athlete of the Year, Bill Hayward Female Amateur Athlete of the Year and Harry Glickman Professional Athletes of the Year.
Presenting sponsor: HP
State Champion Sponsors: NBC Sports Northwest Nike Pamplin Media Group Portland Thorns Portland Timbers Portland Trail Blazers Providence Heath and Services Washington Trust Bank
About Sport Oregon
Sport Oregon’s mission is to drive economic growth and enhance Oregon’s quality of life through sports. Our non-profit organization has served as the state’s sports economic development arm for more than two decades, injecting more than $350 million into Oregon’s economy through sports tourism.
Supported by more than 150 annual members, Sport Oregon works relentlessly to enhance the state’s economy and quality of life by attracting sports events and franchises. Sport Oregon’s major achievements include securing the NCAA Basketball Tournament, Davis Cup World Final, multiple U.S. Figure Skating Championships, Women’s World Cup Soccer and the Dew Tour. Sport Oregon was recognized as “Sports Commission of the Year” in 2010 by the National Association of Sports Commissions. View a complete list of Past Events and Future Events.
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