Mahtook wins All-Louisiana Hitter of the Year award by a landslide

NATCHITOCHES – Southeastern Louisiana University pitcher Tyler Watkins was selected as the Pitcher of the Year while teammates Justin Boudreaux and Brock Hebert earned honors as the 2011 All-Louisiana Baseball Team was released Saturday by the Louisiana Sports Writers Association.

LSU outfielder Mikie Mahtook was an overwhelming selection as the 2011 All-Louisiana Hitter of the Year while teammate JaCoby Jones was named the state’s Freshman of the Year and Raph Rhymes was tabbed as Newcomer-of-the-Year. LSU-Shreveport head coach Rocke Musgraves, who led his team to the NAIA World Series, was named the state’s Coach of the Year.

Watkins, a senior from Petal, Miss., compiled a 10-3 record and a 3.26 ERA on the mound while helping the Lions to a 35-22 overall record. He earned second team All-Southland Conference honors after becoming the first Southeastern pitcher since former Lion Jeff Williams in 1996 to win 10 games in a season.

Watkins earned 10 of a possible 23 votes on the team, which was voted on by a panel of sports information directors and media across the state. He led the team in wins, complete games (5) and innings pitched (102.0) and tied for team-lead with 15 starts on the mound.

Watkins pitched complete-game seven-hitter with nine strikeouts in a win over NCAA Regional participant Florida International to help the Lions to a series victory in the opening weekend. He pitched seven innings and scattered four hits in a win over NCAA Regional participant Sacred Heart and scattered eight hits in complete game victory at Northwestern State.

Boudreaux, who was drafted in the 14th round by the Los Angeles Dodgers in last week’s Major League Draft, was a second-team selection at shortstop after he hit .333 on the season with eight home runs and 48 RBI.

A second-team All-Southland Conference shortstop, Boudreaux posted 22 multiple-hit games, including four-hit performances against UCF, UTSA and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. Boudreaux was named the Most Valuable Player of the South Alabama Classic after helping the Lions to wins over Alabama, UCF and South Alabama. He went 4-for-5 with four RBI in win over UCF and belted homers in back-to-back games against Florida International and Tulane.

Hebert, a sophomore from Bourg, La., was named Honorable Mention at second base after finishing second for the Lions in hitting with a .340 average with a pair of home runs, 31 RBI and 26 stolen bases.

A third-team All-Southland Conference selection, Hebert went 3-for-4 with an RBI in the Lions’ season-opening win at FIU and added three-hit games at Central Arkansas, UT Arlington and Sam Houston State. Hebert led the team with 23 multiple-hit contests and belted homers in midweek games against Tulane and UNO.

Mahtook joined fellow LSU teammates – pitcher Kurt McCune and designated hitter Rhymes – as first team selections to lead all state schools with five first and second team selections. McNeese State equaled LSU with the most first team selections with three.

Mahtook, a junior from Lafayette, earned first team All-SEC honors and was a first round draft pick by the Tampa Bay Rays after he hit .383 on the season with 14 home runs and 56 RBIs. He ranked in the top three in the league in nearly every offensive category.

Rymes hit .360 for LSU on the season and led the Tigers with 77 hits. The sophomore from Monroe finished the season with 18 doubles, three home runs, and 42 RBIs.

Jones was a freshman All-SEC selection for the Tigers after he hit .338 with 11 doubles, four homers, and 32 RBIs. The Richton, Miss. native earned SEC freshman of the week honors for the week of Feb. 28 after he hit .636 in four games from Feb. 22-27.

Musgraves coached the Pilots to a 47-15 record and a semifinal appearance in the NAIA World Series – falling to eventual national champion Concordia by an 8-4 score. The Pilots claimed the RRAC regular season title with a 26-4 conference record and was a perfect 4-0 in the RRAC Tournament to claim their fifth tournament title in the last six years.

Joining Watkins, Mahtook, McCune and Rhymes on the first team were pitchers Seth Webster (Nicholls), Jordan LeGros (McNeese State); first baseman Frazier Hall (Southern); second baseman Jordan Marks (Louisiana College); shortstop Jace Peterson (McNeese State); third baseman Mark Threlkeld (Louisiana Tech); catcher Jeremy Schaffer (Tulane); Rhymes at DH; outfield Seth Granger (McNeese State), Mike Petello (ULL), and Mahtook; and utility player Nick Schneeberger (Tulane).

Joining Boudreaux on the second team were pitchers Jordan Nicholson (ULL), Alex Facundus and Nick Pepitone (both of Tulane), and Joe Scanio of Northwestern State; first baseman Kevin Smith (LSU-Shreveport); second baseman Jones of LSU; third baseman R.J. Talamantes (Centenary); catcher Andrew Brouillette (LSU-Shreveport); DH Kyle Pearson (LSU-Shreveport); utility Cody Causey (LSU-Shreveport); and outfielders Lee Orr (McNeese State), Colin Bear (Northwestern State), and Mason Katz (LSU).

McNeese State, Tulane, and LSU-Shreveport followed LSU with four first and second team selections.

2011 All-Louisiana Baseball

Selected by the Louisiana Sports Writers Association

First Team

Pitchers – Tyler Watkins, SLU; Seth Webster, Nicholls; Jordan LeGros, McNeese State; Kurt McCune, LSU

First Base – Frazier Hall, Southern

Second Base – Jordan Marks, Louisiana College

Shortstop – Jace Peterson, McNeese State

Third Base – Mark Threlkeld, Louisiana Tech

Catcher – Jeremy Schaffer, Tulane

Outfield – Mikie Mahtook, LSU; Seth Granger, McNeese State; Mike Petello, ULL

DH – Raph Rhymes, LSU

Utility – Nick Schneeberger, Tulane

Hitter of the Year: Mikie Mahtook, LSU

Voting — Mikie Mahtook, LSU, 18; Frazier Hall, Southern, 3; Kevin Smith, LSUS, 1; Jordan Marks, La. College, 1.

Pitcher of the Year: Tyler Watkins, SLU

Voting — Tyler Watkins, SLU, 10; Seth Webster, Nicholls, 6; Kurt McCune, LSU, 3; Jordan LeGros, McNeese St., 2; Nick Pepitone, Tulane, 1; Jordan Nicholson, ULL, 1.

Newcomer of the Year: Raph Rhymes, LSU

Voting — Raph Rhymes 11, Joe Scanio 5, Wilmy Marerro 2, Ronny Webber 2, Joey Rapp, ULM, 2; Nick Schneeberger, Tulane, 1.

Freshman of the Year: JaCoby Jones, LSU

Voting — JaCoby Jones, LSU, 7; Alex Facundus, Tulane, 6; R.J. Talamantes, Centenary, 5; Ryan Gebhardt, La. Tech, 3; Jose DeLeon, Southern, 1; Cole Prejean, La. College, 1.

Coach of the Year: Rocke Musgraves, LSU-Shreveport

Voting — Rocke Musgraves, LSUS, 14; Jay Artigues, SLU, 3; Wade Simoneaux, La. Tech, 3; Mike Byrnes, La. College, 2; Seth Thibodeaux, Nicholls, 1.

Second Team

Pitchers – Jordan Nicholson, ULL; Alex Facundus, Tulane; Nick Pepitone, Tulane; Joe Scanio, Northwestern State

First Base – Kevin Smith, LSU-Shreveport

Second Base – JaCoby Jones, LSU

Shortstop – Justin Boudreaux, SLU

Third Base – R.J. Talamantes, Centenary

Catcher – Andrew Brouillette, LSU-Shreveport

Outfield – Lee Orr, McNeese State; Colin Bear, Northwestern State; Mason Katz, LSU

DH – Kyle Pearson, LSU-Shreveport

Utility – Cody Causey, LSU-Shreveport

Honorable Mention

Pitcher – Caleb Dudley, Louisiana Tech; Mike Jefferson, Louisiana Tech; Kevin Gausman, LSU; 1B – Joey Rapp, ULM; 2B – Brock Hebert, SLU; SS – Chase Jaramillo, Nicholls; Greg Fontenot, ULL; Chris Wolfe, Grambling; 3B – Tyler Hanover, LSU; C – Clint Ewing, Louisiana Tech; OF – Wilmy Marerro, Southern; Pete Rajkovich, Centenary; Chase Wentz, LSU-Shreveport; Eldred Barnett, Grambling.

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