Monday, May 21, 2012

Hebert, Lopez, Cutura Voted SLC Best

It has been a historical day in the way of post-season awards for the SLU Lions baseball program.  Junior 2B Brock Hebert has been named the Southland Conference Player of the Year, as well as the SLC Hitter of the Year.  Junior closer Stefan Lopez has been named the SLC Relief Pitcher of the Year and freshmen RHP Andro Cutura has been named the league's Freshman of the Year.  This marks the first time that a Lion has earned any of the SLC Player of the Year honors.

Hebert, who has produced one of the greatest seasons in school history, led the conference with a .388 batting average, 55 runs scored, 21 doubles, and 36 stolen bases.  One of the top defensive second basemen in the country, Hebert led the conference in fielding assist with 179.  The South Terrebonne High product ranked second in on-base percentage (.486), second in hits (80), third in hit by pitches (13), fourth in total bases (111) and fifth in slugging (.539) and walks (28).  His 36 stolen bases set the school's single season record.  His 80 hits puts him in select company, as he joins only six other members in the the program's 200 Hit Club with 208 career hits.  Hebert was named the SLC Hitter of the Week twice this season.

What has come to be known as "Closing Time" you could hear the echoes of "Game Over" around The Pat when Lions closer Stefan Lopez entered the game in the ninth inning.  Lopez, the SLC single season and career saves leader racked up a nation leading 19 saves this season.  In 25 appearances the New Iberia, LA native struck out 39 batters and walked only four in 26 innings pitched.  Lopez limited opponents to a .179 batting average and boasts a 0.69 ERA to go along with his league leading 25 games finished.  His 19 saves this season give him 29 for his career.

Cutura, who appeared out of the bullpen in first three appearances, finished the regular season with a 6-1 record and a 2.90 ERA in 13 appearances.  The Pearl River, LA native earned the Friday night starter's role against Texas-Arlington and never looked backed.  At one point the freshman won four straight conference starts highlighted by the Lions 10-1 win over Texas State, where he pitched a complete game.  For the season Cutura struck out 31 batters in 68.1 innings and limited opponents to a .220 batting average.

Travis Ballew of Texas State took home the SLC Pitcher of the Year and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi's Daniel Minor was named the league's Newcomer of the Year.  In his first season at the helm David Pierce of Sam Houston State was voted Coach of the Year.

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