DALLAS, Texas - Southern Illinois junior first baseman Chris Serritella and Missouri State sophomore pitcher Nick Petree were two of nine Division I baseball standouts to earn District Player of the Year recognition from the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Friday.
Serritella was named NCBWA's 2012 District V Player of the Year, which includes all schools in Michigan, Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Wisconsin, while Petree was named the District VI Player of the Year after posting one of the most dominant seasons in MSU history to help the Bears (40-22) earn their first NCAA Tournament bid in nine years.
The postseason honors are piling up for Serritella, who was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in the fourth round earlier this week. Last week he was named a Louisville Slugger Third-Team All-American. Serritella also earned All-Missouri Valley Conference First-Team honors and was selected to the MVC All-Tournament Team after helping the Salukis to the championship game. He has also been named an All-American by College Sports Madness.
Serritella won the MVC batting title with a .389 average and led the conference in seven other statistical categories. He also set single-season school records with 24 doubles and 156 total bases, and his 91 hits were one shy of the school record. His 30 home runs are third most in school history, and his .367 career batting average is the fifth highest in school history.
Petree, who was named National Player of the Year and a first-team All-American by Collegiate Baseball last week, went 10-4 with a 1.01 ERA and 114 strikeouts in 115.1 innings pitched in 2012 to lead a dominant Bears’ pitching staff that currently leads the nation in team ERA (2.57) and shutouts (11), while ranking third in Division I with a school-record 537 strikeouts on the season. He becomes the first Bear to earn a District Player of the Year citation in the 13 years the NCBWA has awarded the honor and was previously named a semifinalist for both the NCBWA’s Dick Howser Trophy and USA Baseball’s Golden Spikes Award.
Petree is the third Bear to earn MVC Pitcher of the Year honors from the MVC in the last five seasons and the fifth MSU hurler overall to win the same award. The Clinton, Mo., product turned in the nation's longest scoreless-inning streak this season, working a Missouri State-record 38.1 consecutive shutout frames from April 6-May 17, as well as 73.0 straight innings without giving up an earned run (March 2-May 17). Petree’s 1.01 earned run average leads all of Division I entering NCAA Super Regional play and the right-hander also paces the Missouri Valley Conference in victories after becoming just the seventh pitcher in school history to surpass the 100-strikeout plateau in a season, finishing with 114 punchouts on the year to rank 16th nationally and third on MSU’s single-season list.