Southern Miss

Southern Miss’ Matt Wallner picks up another honor

Southern Miss center fielder Matt Wallner fields a ground ball during Southern Miss-Charlotte game on May 27 at MGM Park in Biloxi.
Southern Miss center fielder Matt Wallner fields a ground ball during Southern Miss-Charlotte game on May 27 at MGM Park in Biloxi. ttisbell@sunherald.com File

Southern Miss outfielder Matt Wallner was named to his second Freshman All-American team on Monday.

The Minnesota native landed one of 16 spots on the 2017 National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association All-Freshman First Team.

The NCBWA National Freshman Player of the Year and National Freshman Pitcher of the Year will be announced on Tuesday. Wallner should gain serious consideration for the Freshman Player of the Year honor. Texas A&M’s Braden Shewmake was the National Freshman of the Year earlier this month by Collegiate Baseball.

Wallner was named Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-American and second-team Baseball America All-American last week after batting .336 with a USM freshman record of 19 homers. He also knocked in 63 runs, 14 doubles, two triples and four stolen bases.

As a pitcher, Wallner had a 2-0 record with a 1.84 ERA in nine appearances out of the bullpen. He struck out 15 and walked seven in 14 2/3 innings.

As a hitter, he had a .463 on base percentage and a .655 slugging percentage for a USM team that finished with a single-season program record in wins at 50-16.

Wallner is set to join the USA Baseball Collegiate Team Training Camp later this month with a chance to make this summer’s roster. Training camp invitees will compete for a spot on the final 24-man roster, which will be announced on July 1. The players will train at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, North Carolina, and play games with teams in the Coastal Plains League from June 20-25.

Southern Miss freshman outfielder/pitcher Matt Wallner has become an immediate star in Hattiesburg. - Video courtesy Southern Miss

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