HATTIESBURG, Miss. – Southern Miss outfielder Matt Wallner added to his list of awards Monday by being named the Baseball America Freshman of the Year.
The Forest Lake, Minn., native now has garnered two Freshman of the Year awards, as he garnered the Hitter of the Year accolade by the National Collegiate Baseball Association (NCBWA) as well as making the Freshman All-America teams by Collegiate Baseball, NCBWA and Perfect Game Rawlings. Wallner also garnered Conference USA Freshman of the Year honors.
“What a tremendous honor for what Matt accomplished during his freshman season for us,” said Scott Berry. “There are a lot of great freshman players across the country and for Matt to be recognized as Freshman of the Year is a true honor.”
He also has earned spots on five All-America teams, which also includes first-team honors by D1Baseball.com and the NCBWA and second-team nods by Baseball America and Perfect Game/Rawlings and third team accolades by American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings.
Wallner registered a .336 batting average during his initial season with the Golden Eagles while putting together Southern Miss freshman records for home runs (19) and runs batted in (63). The 6-foot-5 outfielder/pitcher also added 14 doubles, two triples and four stolen bases.
His offensive numbers included a .463 on base percentage along with a .655 slugging percentage for a Golden Eagle squad that won a school-record 50 games in 2017 that included a C-USA regular season championship and the school hosting just their second-ever NCAA regional.
Wallner currently is playing for the USA Baseball Collegiate National Team in which he has appeared in two games. He is hitless in three at bats, but has walked twice, scored twice and driven in one run.
He is the first Southern Miss player to win this award.
Here is a list of Wallner’s 2017 honors:
* C-USA Hitter of the Week – 4/3* Second Team All-Conference USA
* C-USA All-Freshman Team
* C-USA Freshman of the Year
* C-USA All-Tournament Team
* Baseball America Freshman of the Year* NCBWA Freshman Hitter of the Year
* D1Baseball.com All-American (first team)
* NCBWA All-American (first team)* Baseball America All-American (second team)
* Perfect Game/Rawlings All-American (second team)
* ABCA/Rawlings All-American (third team)* Baseball America Freshman All-American (first team)
* Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-American
* NCBWA Freshman All-American (frist team)
* ABCA/Rawlings South All-Region (first team)