Trae Clark might not start for the Cal Poly men’s basketball team, but he played enough to impress opposing coaches, earning Big West “Freshman of the Year.”

Clark averaged 9.1 points per game during conference play and shot 42.9 percent from three-point range during the season.

The 5-foot-11-inch guard started just three games during the year, but averaged 23.5 minutes off the bench. He might have made even more of an impact on the Mustangs’ season if not for missing the first six games of the season due to ineligibility, Cal Poly coach Kevin Bromley said.

Clark is the fourth player from Cal Poly to win the award.

Teammates Derek Stockalper and Dawin Whiten each received all-conference honors, Stockalper on the first team and Whiten on the second, while Chaz Thomas was selected along with Clark to the all-freshman team.

Stockalper became the third player in school history to earn first team honors. The junior forward averaged 13.1 points and 6.9 rebounds per game. Those numbers increased to 14.3 and 7.8 rebounds per game during Big West play.

Efficiency was key to Stockalper’s game, shooting a team-high 49.3 percent from the field and connecting on 42 percent of his 3-point attempts.

Chris Bjorkland (2000) and Varnie Dennis (2003) are the only other two Mustang players to make the first team.

Whiten, a member of the 2005 Big West all-freshman team, averaged 12 points per game this season. The guard was second on the team with 25 steals.

Although Thomas, Cal Poly’s starting point guard, was beat out by Clark for freshman of the year honors, the Daly City native was selected to the all-freshman team. Thomas averaged 7.9 points and 2.7 assists per game and had a team-high 39 steals.

The men’s basketball team will play its opening game in the Big West tournament on Thursday against the best remaining seed, likely UC Santa Barbara, which plays No. 8 UC Riverside on Wednesday.

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