Jan. 29, 2018
HATTIESBURG, Miss. -
Southern Miss outfielder/pitcher Matt Wallner (Forest Lake, Minn.) collected his fourth preseason All-America honor Monday morning with his selection as third-team utility player by Baseball America.
Wallner, who garnered preseason first-team honors by D1Baseball.com and second team honors by Collegiate Baseball and Perfect Game, registered a .336 batting average during his initial season with the Golden Eagles in 2017, while putting together Southern Miss freshman records for home runs (19) and runs batted in (63). His home run total was the most by any freshman in country while his RBI total ranked second. He also added 14 doubles, two triples and four stolen bases.
His offensive numbers included a .463 on base percentage along with a .655 slugging percentage for a Golden Eagle squad that won a school-record 50 games in 2017 that included a C-USA regular season championship and the school hosting just their second-ever NCAA regional.
Wallner garnered the Freshman Hitter of the Year accolade by the National Collegiate Baseball Association (NCBWA) and Freshman of the Year award by Baseball America. In addition, he made the Freshman All-America teams by Collegiate Baseball and Perfect Game/Rawlings and earned the Conference USA’s Freshman of the Year nod.
He also has earned spots on five All-America teams last summer, which also includes first-team honors by D1Baseball.com and the NCBWA and second-team nods by Baseball America and Perfect Game/Rawlings and third team accolades by American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings.
The Golden Eagles open the season Feb. 16, when they play in the Mississippi Farm Bureau Classic, hosting Mississippi State in a three-game set at Pete Taylor Park/Hill Denson Field.
Season tickets for the 2018 Golden Eagle home season remain available, as well as single game tickets, and can be purchased by going online at SouthernMissTickets.com, by calling 1-800-844-TICK (8425) or by visiting the Pat Ferlise Ticket Office (W. 4th Street) weekdays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.