Southern Miss

Three Southern Miss players among 5 finalists for Ferriss Trophy

Southern Miss outfielder Matt Wallner prepares to swing while competing against Nicholls State on April 18 at MGM Park in Biloxi.
Southern Miss outfielder Matt Wallner prepares to swing while competing against Nicholls State on April 18 at MGM Park in Biloxi. amccoy@sunherald.com File

Three Southern Miss players are among the five finalists for this year’s C Spire Ferriss Trophy, which is awarded each season to the state’s top college baseball player.

The finalists are chosen by the state’s college coaches and a panel of pro scouts. Fans can vote at csopavoting.com and that will account for 10 percent of the vote.

The award will be presented in a luncheon on May 22.

The three Golden Eagles are freshman outfielder/ Matt Wallner, senior first baseman Dylan Burdeaux and junior third baseman/pitcher Taylor Braley.

Mississippi State junior outfielder Brent Rooker and Delta State junior pitcher/first baseman Zach Shannon are the other two finalists.

Rooker is likely the favorite to win the award after putting up some impressive numbers this season for the Bulldogs (33-19). He is batting .400 with 20 homers, 68 RBI and 17 stolen bases.

Wallner has been one of the top freshmen in the nation, batting .330 with 15 homers and 49 RBIs. On the mound, he is 2-0 with a 1.84 ERA and three saves in eight appearances. His 15 homers are a USM freshman record.

Burdeaux, who is a strong candidate to be Conference USA Player of the Year, is batting .352 with nine homers and 60 RBIs.

Braley has been one of the better two-way players in the country this season, batting .335 with 11 homers and 49 RBIs. As a pitcher, he is 5-2 with a 3.48 ERA in 11 starts.

Shannon has had a monster season for Division II Delta State (41-11), batting .451 with 18 homers and 84 RBIs.

USM, which has already clinched the C-USA regular season title, will take on Southeastern Louisiana at 7:05 p.m. Tuesday at Biloxi’s MGM Park, which will also play host to the C-USA Tournament on May 24-28. Southern Miss is 40-12 with a 22-5 mark in C-USA.

Patrick Magee: 228-896-2333, @Patrick_Magee

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