Local college notes: Softball field to get major makeover at UC Davis

Published: Wednesday, Jun. 4, 2014 - 8:35 pm

UC Davis athletics is undergoing a building boom.

La Rue Field, home to the UC Davis softball team, will be renovated in 2015, the university announced.

The project, estimated to cost between $3.3 million to $4.3 million, will include stadium lights, upgraded seating, a new scoreboard and press box and permanent concession stand and restrooms.

The announcement of the largest renovation of La Rue Field, southwest of La Rue Road and Russell Boulevard, follows the groundbreaking for a new women’s field hockey stadium on the west side of the campus.

University officials said construction on the La Rue project will begin either in February or at the conclusion of the Aggies’ 2015 season in May.

UC Davis’ $3.2 million field hockey facility is expected to be ready when the Aggies report for preseason practices in August. It is southeast of Aggie Stadium across La Rue Road.

Also under construction is a new, $250,000 Aggie Golf Short-Game Training Center at El Macero Country Club, a public-private partnership between UC Davis Athletics, the golf club and Troon Golf. It is being funded by alumni and supporters of the men’s and women’s golf programs at UC Davis.

It will feature two putting greens with chipping, pitching and bunker areas that will incorporate every type of short-game shot.

Hornets honored – Sacramento State junior first baseman Rhys Hoskins has been selected as a third-team NCAA Division I All-American and left-handed pitcher Sam Long as a freshman All-American by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper.

Hoskins, the Western Athletic Conference Player of the Year, is the program’s first All-American since outfielder Tim Wheeler in 2009. Wheeler plays for the Triple-A Colorado Springs Sky Sox.

Hoskins led the WAC this seaspm with nine home runs and a .563 slugging percentage and was second in RBIs (45) and doubles (16) during the regular season. The former Jesuit High three-sport athlete, who has played for Sac State for three seasons, is tied for third in program history with 128 RBIs and 49 doubles and is sixth with 25 home runs and 199 hits.

Long, who graduated from Del Campo High School a semester early to enroll at Sac State in the spring, went 8-2 with a 3.03 ERA and was the WAC Freshman of the Year.

The Hornets were 12-3 in Long’s 15 starts, the team’s most wins with any starting pitcher. In WAC play, he was 5-0 while posting a 2.24 ERA and holding opponents to a .213 batting average. He started Sac State’s first NCAA Division I tournament game last Friday against Cal Poly, suffering the loss in the Mustangs’ 4-2 win.

Aggies reach NCAA finals – Distance runner Raquel Lambdin and sprinter Ashley Marshall have qualified for the NCAA championships June 11-14 in Eugene, Ore., after winning at the West preliminary meet last weekend in Arkansas.

Lambdin used a strong finish to place fifth in her 1,500-meter semifinal heat with a career best of 4 minutes, 20.89 seconds to earn an automatic berth. The Big West Conference champion moved to No. 2 all-time in the event for UC Davis and will make her first finals appearance.

Marshall, the two-time Big West Female Track Athlete of the Year, finished with the sixth-fastest time in the 100 at 11.47 seconds to qualify for the finals for the second consecutive year.

Aggies coaching change – Women’s volleyball coach Jamie Holmes, who had 100 wins during six seasons, has resigned for personal reasons, UC Davis announced.

Holmes took a program that had won only 15 matches in four seasons and turned the Aggies into a Big West Conference contender. The Aggies were 20-10 overall and second in the Big West in 2009 when Holmes was named Big West co-Coach of the Year. In 2011, the Aggies spent five weeks in the American Volleyball Coaches Association Division I Top 25 poll and won 21 matches, tops for the program in the Division I era.

Last season, the Aggies were 14-15 overall and 6-10 in conference play.

Hornet-Cal kickoff announced – Kickoff for Sac State’s football game at Cal will be noon on Sept. 6. The game will be broadcast by the Pac-12 Network.

It will be the second game of the season for both teams. Cal plays Aug. 30 at Northwestern, the same day the Hornets play at Incarnate Word in San Antonio.

Call The Bee’s Bill Paterson, (916) 326-5506.

Read more articles by Bill Paterson

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