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March 5, 2012

Santiago Wins Second Player of the Year Award

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - Today the Big West Conference announced the 2011-2012 Women's Basketball All-Conference teams, with Cal Poly's Kristina Santiago earning Player of the Year, Kayla Griffin earning second-team honors with Jonae Ervin and Ashlee Burns garnering honorable mention. Ervin also earned the 2011-12 Big West Hustle award.   

For the two-time Big West Player of the Year winner, the Santa Maria native, leads the league in points per game (23.1), rebounds (10.1), field goal percentage (.558) and has posted 16 double-doubles on the season, garnering national recognition as well in those categories. Nationally she is ranked 7th in scoring, 22nd in rebounding and 10th in field goal percentage.

Santiago has put up double figures in all her 26 games played except one, with her career-high 44 points coming against San Diego State.

Santiago concluded the regular season in record-breaking fashion as she broke the all-time scoring record at Cal Poly, recording her 1,844th point, with her second field goal of the game at Pacific. She broke the record held by Laura Buehning when she played at Cal Poly between 1979 to 1982. She currently has scored 1,873 points in her Cal Poly career.

She is also the school record holder in career rebounds and currently has 826 rebounds in her career.

This is the third consecutive player of the year award for Cal Poly.

The senior also earned her third 1st team honor of her career.

Griffin earned second-team honors when she was second on the Mustangs in both scoring and rebounding. The guard averaged 8.9 points and 6.7 rebounds in the 26 games she played and started.

She recorded seven double figure games in scoring, including a career-high 20 points against Cal State Bakersfield. She tallied a career-high 13 rebounds in the season opener at Oregon and dished out seven assists in the same game.

She shot 39 percent from the floor and made 36 percent from long range.

Burns and Ervin received honorable mention with both earning national rankings in different fields.

Burns, second on the Mustangs in scoring, averaged 9.5 points per game. She hit 44 percent of her shots from the floor and is ranked 6th in the nation, hitting 42 percent from long range.

Ervin earned honorable mention and named the Big West Best Hustle Player when she appeared in all 29 games, starting 20 of those contests.

Ervin came out strong, posting her career-best 33 points in the first matchup of the season against Oregon. She led the team with 3.8 assists while scoring 8.2 points and grabbing 2.8 rebounds. Ervin holds the No. 1 spot for assists turnover ratio (3.25), both in conference and in NCAA DIV I standings.

Ervin becomes the fourth Mustangs to earn the award joining Odessa Jenkins (2000-01 and 2001-02) and Kari Duperron (2002-03).

Cal Poly, the No. 1 seed, will host Cal State Fullerton, the No. 8 seed, on Tuesday, March 6, at 7 pm in a first round game of the Big West Conference Basketball Tournament.

Doors to Mott Gym open at 6 pm with all seating general admission. Tickets are available at the Cal Poly ticket office, located in front of the Rec Center, or on line at GoPoly.com.

Tickets are $10 each for the general public and $5 for Big West students.

The ticket office is open from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm.