May. 9, 2018
Smith Earns GNAC Player of the Year, Nine Earn All-GNAC Selections
James Smith III was named the Great Northwest Athletic Conference Player of the Year and garnered First Team All-GNAC accolades, the conference office announced today. Smith is one of nine Central Washington University baseball players to earn All-GNAC honors for the 2018 season.
Smith, Dustin Braun, and Connor Stevenson all earned First Team All-GNAC honors. Braun and Smith were both unanimous first team selections.
Smith has compiled a .368 average through 50 games. He has roped 20 doubles, 10 homeruns, and driven in 48 runs. He has posted a slugging percentage of .642, coupled with an on-base percentage of .450. Smith's average is good enough for fifth in the GNAC, his slugging percentage and on-base percentage put him fourth in both categories. Smith leads the GNAC in runs scored (54), hits (70), runs batted in (48), doubles (20), and total bases (122). He is fourth in homeruns (10). Smith has also posted a perfect fielding percentage and a .480 average against left-handed pitchers on his way to GNAC Player of the Year. He was an honorable mention last season.
Braun is hitting at a clip of .381 on the year, with six homeruns, 39 runs batted in, a slugging percentage of .536, 69 hits, and 10 doubles. He is second in the GNAC in average (.381), eighth in slugging percentage (.536), fifth in on-base percentage (.432), second in hits (69), sixth in RBI (39), first in average against right handers (.417).
Connor Stevenson earned First Team All-GNAC for his efforts on the mound. In 13 appearances, Stevenson has compiled a 5-6 record, 4.52 ERA, and 52 strikeouts over 73.2 innings. He leads the GNAC in innings pitched and opponents are hitting .286 off the righty. Stevenson is sixth in strikeouts (52) in the GNAC.
Seth Pedersen earned Second Team All-GNAC honors. The Longview, Washington native posted a 4-4 record, and an ERA of 5.19, in 60.2 innings. He struck out 60 hitters and held opponents to an average of .252.
Griffin Davis, Ty Deckwa, Justin Hampson, Mitch Lesmeister, and Tristin Parton all earned GNAC Honorable Mention.
Davis leads the Wildcats in wins (6) and has hurled 62.2 innings. He has struck out 53 hitters and held opponents to a .259 average against.
Deckwa earned the all-conference nod as a utility player. Deckwa has played every infield position except first on the season. batted .307 in the regular season. He scored 45 runs, drove in 19, hit seven doubles, one triple, and one homerun.
Hampson is hitting .329, with eight doubles, three triples, one homerun, 23 runs batted in, an on-base percentage of .416, and five stolen bases.
Lesmeister earns the all-GNAC nod as a freshman. In 39 games, Lesmeister has posted an average of .305. He has hit two homeruns and driven in 18 runners. He is slugging .422, with an on-base percentage of .403.
Parton swung his way into the regular lineup during the last month of the season and it paid off for the Wildcats. Parton is hitting .392 in 40 games. He has two homeruns, 18 runs batted in, and 10 doubles. He has also swiped five bags.