Jayden Chesnut Named Division II National Pitcher of the Week

Jayden Chesnut Named Division II National Pitcher of the Week

Sophomore Jayden Chestnut pitches the ball to a Southwest Baptist player at the UCO vs. Southwest Baptist University Game at the Broncho Softball Field on April 7, 2017. (Elizabeth Roberts/ The Vista). 

The National Fastpitch Coaches Association named University of Central Oklahoma softball pitcher Jayden Chestnut the Division II National Pitcher of the Week last Wednesday.

During the week of April 3-9, Chestnut did not allow a single run while going 3-0 and capped her week off by pitching a six-inning perfect game in an 8-0 victory over Central Missouri.

Her performance also garnered her Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA) and Oklahoma Sports Net Pitcher of the Week.

The sophomore transfer from the University of Oklahoma had 20 strikeouts in 20 innings and held opposing teams to a .033 batting average.

Chestnut started the week against Cameron, pitching seven innings while allowing only one hit in a 5-0 win for the Bronchos.

Up next for Chestnut and the Bronchos was Southwest Baptist. The Bronchos won the ballgame 2-0, as Chestnut once again pitched seven innings and struck out seven batters – all while holding Southwest Baptist to just one hit.

Chestnut saved her best performance for last as she pitched a perfect game against Central Missouri by not allowing a single hit. The Bronchos won the game 8-0 and Chestnut became the first UCO pitcher since Kaylnn Schrock in 2014 to pitch a perfect game.

Chestnut earning National Pitcher of the Week honors is a testament to her hard work throughout the season. In her first game for the Bronchos on February 17, Chestnut pitched 2.2 innings while allowing five hits and four runs in a loss against St. Mary’s.

That first game wouldn’t deter Chestnut, however, as she is now riding an eight-game win streak heading in to the final stretch of the regular season as the team readies for the playoffs. During this win streak, Chestnut has given up a total of just eight runs and is now 15-3 on the season.

“I think it has to do with me feeling really confident,” Chestnut said.

The pitcher from Mustang, Oklahoma is second in the MIAA conference and the team leader in strikeouts with 139. Chestnut is also second in the conference in opponent batting average, as opposing teams are hitting .196 with her on the mound.

Chestnut said she still sees room for improvement in her game, like keeping hits to a minimum, not giving up big innings and giving her teams hitters a better chance by placing them in better opportunities.

The Bronchos rank first in the MIAA conference in batting average, hits, runs, doubles, triples and RBI, and are second in home runs.

“We’re just playing really well together right now and I think our hitters are having a lot of confidence,” Chestnut said.

As the regular season winds down the Bronchos have won 15 out of their last 16 games and and seem to have hit their stride.

“I think we’re kind of getting to the point of the season where we’re hitting our peak right now,” Chestnut said.

 

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