It was an eventful week for Ceres High School grad Callie Nunes.
The Concordia University standout sophomore pitcher received individual recognition and helped her team repeat as league champions and climb to first in the regional rankings.
Nunes and the Eagles claimed their second straight Pac-West Conference regular-season crown on April 25.
Concordia beat Azusa Pacific twice (8-6, 3-1) on Saturday and extended its unbeaten streak to 15 games.
“It’s been a really fun year,” she said. “I know it sounds cliché, but every single person on the team is needed.”
Nunes was named a finalist for the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) Division-II National Player and Pitcher of the Year awards last Thursday.
“It feels great to be recognized for all the hard work."Callie Nunes
“It feels great to be recognized for all the hard work,” she said.
“Callie was so freaking awesome to play with,” said University of Washington star junior shortstop Sis Bates, a teammate of Nunes at Ceres High School and a finalist for the USA Softball Division-I Collegiate Player of the Year award. “She was a competitor, great teammate, and an even better friend. I am so proud of her. She deserves it all.”
Nunes received NFCA National Pitcher of the Week honors for the second time this season on April 24.
“It’s amazing to get the honor twice,” she said. “I found out today. My dad called me and told me this morning. I didn’t even know I was in the running. My defense was a key factor in me getting this award.”
Nunes was recognized for posting a perfect 7-0 record with a 0.22 ERA and 40 strikeouts in 311/3 innings.
She started four times and made three relief appearances.
“It’s crazy,” she said. “This is one of the best runs of success I’ve had this year. My mentality was the same. Mechanically, I had a good rhythm going.”
Nunes notched her fourth no-hitter of the season in a 4-0 win against Academy of Art University on April 17 in Brisbane.
“This one was different,” said Nunes, who totaled 12 strikeouts versus the Urban Knights. “I didn’t know I was throwing a no-hitter. I was more focused on helping my head coach get her 500th career victory.”
Concordia also climbed to No. 1 in the NCAA Division-II Softball West Regional rankings last Wednesday.
“Our team is very gritty,” Nunes said. “We all get along off the field. There are no clicks. We’re a cohesive team. That helps when you’re playing.”
Nunes suffered an oblique injury at the end of the last season and struggled during her first start this year.
The 2018 NFCA National Freshman of the Year and First Team All-American allowed four runs and four hits with four strikeouts and four walks in a 4-2 loss to Northwest Nazarene on Feb. 1.
“There was never a question if I was going to get better,” she said. “I didn’t need surgery. It was just very painful. I just needed rest. I had a huge support system to back me up.”
Concordia (44-6, 30-3) will compete at NCAA Regionals, May 9-11. Site and opponent to be determined.