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Three WCC First Year Players Capture Baseball America Freshman All-American Honors

July 1, 2014

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Three West Coast Conference student-athletes earned 2014 Freshman All-American honors from Baseball America. Loyola Marymount's David Fletcher and Austin Miller join Pepperdine's Aaron Barnett. Miller, the 2014 WCC Freshman of the Year, and Barnett each earned first team selection.

Austin Miller and David Fletcher were named Louisville Slugger Freshmen All-Americans according to  Collegiate Baseball newspaper, it was announced on Wednesday morning. The Freshman All-American honors are the first for LMU since Matt Lowenstein was tabbed in 2010. LMU last had two Freshman All-American selections in 2002 (Sean Smith and Joe Frazee). Miller, the WCC Freshman of the Year, and Fletcher, the WCC Defensive Player of the Year, each were tabbed first team All-WCC earlier this season.

Miller enjoyed a strong freshman campaign for the Lions en route to the Freshman of the Year honor, batting a team-high .374 with 46 runs scored, 10 doubles, three triples and 18 RBI while swiping 25 bases in 29 attempts and reaching at a .474 clip. Miller, who hit safely in 45 of LMU's 56 games this year, collected a team-high 24 multi-hit games while playing a stellar centerfield defensively. In WCC play, Miller hit .373 with four doubles, a triple, and nine RBI while scoring 21 runs. The center fielder shared the league lead in stolen bases with 11 in 14 attempts and posted a .449 on base percentage while starting all 27 WCC contests. 

Fletcher, who dazzled spectators defensively en route to the Defensive Player of the Year honor, also produced at the plate. The native of Cypress, Calif. hit .329 with 37 runs scored, six doubles, two triples and 28 RBI while hitting safely in 30 of LMU's last 32 games, including a team-high 15-game hit streak to finish the year. Fletcher finished second only to Miller in batting average, runs scored, hits (73), stolen bases (17) and multi-hit games (21). The team-leader in sacrifice bunts, he also finished third on the squad in on-base percentage and RBI hitting out of the first and second spots in the order.

The selections from Baseball America are the first for the Lions since Scott Walter was tabbed a first-teamer in 1998. This marks the first time in LMU history that the Lions have registered a pair of Baseball America Freshmen All-Americans in the same year.

Pepperdine's Aaron Barnett was named to the Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-American team today. The Waves' first-year catcher was one of five catchers named to the national list.

Barnett led the team with a .373 average over the course of the regular season, amassing 27 RBI, five doubles and one triple. He was the toughest hitter on the team to strikeout during the regular season, recording just nine strikeouts in 190 at bats.

Barnett was named to the All-WCC freshman team and was All-WCC honorable mention in his first season with the program. He also earned WCC Player of the Week on the final week of the season, helping the Waves clinch the regular-season WCC title.

He has played 57 of 58 games for Pepperdine this season, helping the team to a 42-16 record and a berth in the NCAA Super Regional. The Waves will face TCU this weekend for a shot at a spot in the College World Series.

Barnett is the lone catcher on the 16-player first team and is the first Pepperdine player since Brett Hunter in 2006 to earn the honor. He has also been named a Freshman All-American by Collegiate Baseball and the NCBWA already this year.

From LMULions.com and PepperdineSports.com