OXFORD, Ohio - After posting impressive performances in the state of Florida during Miami's spring break, the Miami Athletes of the Week connected by Frontier Communications for the week of March 11-17 are senior pitcher Brooks Fiala for the men and junior runner Erica Howes on the women's side.
Fiala (Carmel, Ind.) had his best outing as a RedHawk last week as he pitched a two-hit, complete-game shutout against Navy on Friday in Auburndale, Fla. He struck out a career-high 13 batters, the most by a RedHawk since current Houston Astro John Ely fanned 14 against Bowling Green on April 27, 2007. Fiala walked only one and hit a pair to face just 31 batters. Both hits were by the same Navy batter, including one of the infield variety, as the Midshipmen hit just .071 against Fiala on the day. For the spring trip (Fiala also pitched March 9 vs. Illinois State) he was 2-0, threw 16.2 innings, did not allow a run, gave up seven hits, walked four and struck out 18.
The Miami Male Athlete of the Week honor is the first of Fiala's career. He was also named National Pitcher of the Week by CollegeSportsMadness.com for his performance against Navy.
Howes (Fairfax, Va.) had a great season-opening outdoor race Saturday at Central Florida's Black and Gold Challenge in Orlando, as she earned her first collegiate win, capturing the 1500m run in 4:37.96. She won in a field of 12, also running against athletes from Central Florida, who is nationally ranked, and St. John's. She won the race by over a second and was nearly six seconds ahead of the third-place finisher. Her time ranks third in the MAC so far this year while she was just over a second behind her personal-best time despite being her first race of the outdoor season.
This is the first Miami Female Athlete of the Week award for Howes in her career.
Fiala returns to the mound this weekend when Miami Baseball hosts Eastern Michigan for its Mid-American Conference opening series Friday to Sunday, March 22-24. The RedHawks also play at Indiana this Wednesday after hosting the Hoosiers today (Tuesday). Howes is back on the track this weekend, as well, as Miami's women's track and field team competes at the Vanderbilt Black and Gold Invitational Friday and Saturday, March 22-23 in Nashville, Tenn.
The next Miami Athletes of the Week connected by Frontier Communications will be announced Tuesday, March 26. For a list of previous winners, click here.
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