This is the second preseason accolade for both players.
The Golden Eagles finished 50-16 in 2017.
The honor is the third Freshman of the Year accolade for the Minnesota native.
The Forest Lake, Minn., native is the first Golden Eagle to win this award.
2017 (Fr.): Named 2017 Conference USA Freshman of Year…Named to C-USA’s 2017 All-Freshman team…Named 2017 second-team All-Conference USA…Named to 2017 C-USA All-Tournament team…Second Golden Eagle ever invited to USA Baseball Collegiate Training Camp…Started all 62 games the Golden Eagles played (50 in outfield, 12 as designated hitter)…Among Golden Eagles with 100 plate appearances, tops with 19 home runs, .682 slugging percentage; second with 61 RBIs, .466 on-base percentage; third with .345 batting average, 77 hits, 41 walks; fourth with 53 runs scored, 14 doubles…On-base and slugging were second-best in C-USA…His 19 HRs were one shy of conference record for freshman, and his home runs and RBIs set new school marks for a freshman…Hit a double off the center-field wall at Taylor Park in his first collegiate at-bat…14 multi-run games; career-high three runs, three times; at Louisiana-Lafayette (3/5); vs. Columbia (3/15); vs. Charlotte (5/27, 2nd game)…25 multi-hit games; career-high three hits, twice; vs. UAB (5/13); vs. Charlotte (5/27, 2nd game)…17 multi-RBI games; career-high four RBIs, twice; vs. Florida International (4/7); vs. Old Dominion (4/22)…Hit two home runs vs. Marshall (3/24).
Also made nine appearances as pitcher...Finished 2-0 with 1.84 ERA and three saves…First career win came after two innings of scoreless, one-hit relief vs. Evansville (2/24)…Went a career-long 4 2/3 innings, career-high seven strikeouts to earn second win at Louisiana-Lafayette (3/5)…Earned first career save with three innings at Louisiana Tech (3/17); earned saves vs. Mississippi State (3/21), vs. South Alabama (3/28)…Allowed three earned runs on eight hits in 14 2/3 innings; walked seven, struck out 15.
Named to 2016 fall semester Athletic Director’s Honor Roll
Prep: Played for Coach Tal Gravelle…Originally signed with University of North Dakota before that school disbanded its baseball program…Became first players drafted from his high school in at least 15 years when Minnesota Twins took him in 32nd round…Voted Mr. Minnesota for baseball…All-State selection…St. Paul (Minn.) Pioneer Press East Metro player of the year…Two-year All-Suburban East Conference…Three-year baseball letterman…As a senior, went 7-1 with 0.95 ERA and 95 strikeouts…Hit .382 with 10 home runs; of his 29 hits, 18 went for extra bases…Played in Minnesota Lions All-Star Game…Two-year basketball letterman.
Personal: Son of Maggie and John Wallner…Undecided on major.