FROM NCBWA RELEASE
DALLAS - The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) released the Pro-Line Athletic National Player of the Week awards for the period ending April 8, today. South Carolina junior second baseman Travis Jones was named National Hitter of the Week, while Rice freshman right-handed pitcher Ryan Berry and Missouri sophomore right-handed pitcher Rick Zagone were named National Co-Pitchers of the Week. The NCBWA Board reviews candidates from each Division I conferences each week and names winners each Tuesday throughout the season.
Jones went 11-for-15 (.733) at the plate last week, including 9-for-12 (.750) in the weekend series vs. SEC-leading Florida. The Stone Mountain, Ga., native tallied five home runs in the three-game series vs. the Gators as well as 13 RBIs. He had his second and third multi-homer games of the year on Friday and Sunday vs. Florida, both were Gamecock victories over the Gators. He has three multi-homer games this season for the Gamecocks, the only player on the squad to accomplish the feat. His three-run homer in Sunday's 8-6 win over the Gators tied the game in the ninth inning when the Gamecocks were trailing 5-2 with one out and helped lead the Gamecocks to a weekend series victory.
Berry won his only start of the week on the road at 22nd-ranked East Carolina (Apr. 6). The right-hander from Humble, Texas, allowed just four singles and one walk while striking out a career-high 12 in seven shutout innings in a game the Owls went on to win 4-0. He faced 24 ECU batters and held the Pirates to a composite .167 batting average on his way to his fifth victory of the season. Only three of ECU's hitters Berry faced reached scoring position. Berry has now put together back-to-back dominating starts for Rice the last two weeks. He has allowed just one run, struck out 22 and walked only one in his last 16 innings of work.
Zagone recorded his second complete game in three Big 12 starts this season, as he picked up the victory in the Tigers' 3-0 win over Kansas State on Saturday. The left-hander carried a no-hitter into the ninth inning, as a base hit with one out in the bottom of the ninth was all that stood between Zagone and a no-hitter. The Crystal Lake, Ill., native struck out a career-high 11 KSU batters and remained unbeaten as he improved to 6-0 on the season. The complete-game shutout was the first by a Big 12 pitcher in a conference game this season. There have been five complete games in Big 12 games this year with Zagone claiming two of them.
With this week's honor, Berry and Zagone automatically are named to the watch list for Roger Clemens Award, given to the national collegiate pitcher of the year, sponsored by the Greater Houston Baseball Organization.