MESA, Ariz. - The Western Athletic Conference announced its all-conference teams at the Western Athletic Conference Baseball Tournament Banquet, Tuesday, May 24 in Mesa, Ariz., and NM State had two first-team and three second-team selections on the list.
Junior outfielder Tanner Waite and junior closing-pitcher Scott Coffman were named first team All-WAC selections, while junior shortstop Ty Forney joined sophomore second baseman Parker Hipp and sophomore designated hitter Zac Fisher on the second team.
With Coffman making first team, he becomes the first Aggie pitcher to ever be named First Team All-Conference in any of the Aggies' league affiliations (WAC, Sun Belt, Big West, Missouri Valley).
"I am very pleased with our selections," head coach Rocky Ward said. "Coffman and Waite were very deserving of all-conference first team honors. I think Coffman is the first pitcher that I have coached to be selected as a first teamer."
Coffman has been a dominant pitcher all three of his seasons with the Aggies. Coffman's honor comes as a little bit of a surprise considering he was going up against Hawai'i closer Lenny Linksy and San Jose State closer Zach Jones, both of whom have been also very strong in league play. Coffman's 1.31 ERA with four saves, 16 strikeouts against just 15 hits in 20.2 innings are a impressive considering he hasn't had much opportunity to pitch in save situations over the last three weekends of conference play.
Waite, the everyday Aggie leftfielder, hit .350 with five doubles and 36 RBI in league play this year. The last time an Aggie outfielder was named a first team All-WAC selection was in 2008 when All-American Joseph Scaperotta was named first team while playing centerfield. Waite heads into the tournament with as the only WAC player hitting over .400 on the year.
Second baseman Parker Hipp was named a second team all-WAC selection even after missing eight of the Aggies' 24 league games. In WAC play, Hipp finished with a .333 batting average with a double, six RBI and nine walks. His defensive play was above average as he continued to play after having surgery on his knee.
Designated hitter Zac Fisher led the league with a .452 batting average, while coming up with six doubles, five home runs and 20 RBI in WAC play. Overall on the year, he is hitting .396 and has a 55 RBI.
"Fisher and Hipp were deserving of first team honors as well, but the players selected in front of them had great years as well," head coach Rocky Ward said. "I was pleasantly surprised and pleased that the league coaches selected Forney as a second teamer. He became a full time starter about mid season and has been a solid performer for us."
Shortstop Ty Forney heads into this week's WAC Tournament with a .354 league batting average. He has four doubles and 13 RBI with a team-high four sacrifice bunts in league play. He has made many outstanding defensive plays at shortstop. Forney was named WAC Hitter of the Week, April 18, after helping the Aggies to a 3-1 record over San Jose State by hitting .600 (9-of-15) and striking out only once against a Spartan pitching staff that had the most strikeouts in the league at the time.
The Aggies finished the season with a 9-15 league record and the No. 6 seed in the 2011 WAC Tournament. NM State faces No. 3 seed Louisiana Tech tonight and first pitch is scheduled for an 8:00 p.m. (MT). Fans can listen to the action in Las Cruces on KSNM AM 570 with streaming audio available via Aggie Access (subscription required) at www.NMStateSports.com. Streaming video is also available via WAC.tv for a fee, while live stats are also accessible.
FIRST TEAM ALL-WAC
OF - Aaron Judge, Fr., Fresno State
OF - Dusty Robinson, Jr., Fresno State
OF - Kyle Roliard, Jr., Louisiana Tech
OF - Tanner Waite, Jr., New Mexico State
1B - Jordan Ribera, Sr., Fresno State
1B - Brock Stassi, Sr., Nevada
1B - Danny Stienstra, Sr., San Jose State
2B - Kolten Wong, Jr., Hawai'i
3B - Danny Muno, Sr., Fresno State
SS - Garrett Weber, Sr., Fresno State
C - Austin Wynns, So., Fresno State
DH - Zack Swasey, Jr., Hawai'i
SP - Greg Gonzalez, Sr., Fresno State
SP - Mike Jefferson, Jr., Louisiana Tech
SP - Roberto Padilla, Jr., San Jose State
RP - Scott Coffman, Jr., New Mexico State
SECOND TEAM ALL-WAC
OF - Brennan Gowens, Jr., Fresno State
OF - Brian Barnett, Sr., Nevada
OF - Nick Melino, Jr., Nevada
OF - Craig Hertler, Sr., San Jose State
1B - Jeff Van Doornum, Sr., Hawai'i
2B - Parker Hipp, So., New Mexico State
3B - Mark Threlkeld, Jr., Louisiana Tech
SS - Ryan Gebhardt, Fr., Louisiana Tech
SS - Braden Shipley, Fr., Nevada
SS - Tyler Forney, Jr., New Mexico State
C - Derrick Chung, Jr., Sacramento State
DH - Zac Fisher, So., New Mexico State
SP - Josh Poytress, Jr., Fresno State
SP - Troy Marks, Jr., Nevada
SP - Esteban Guzman, Jr., San Jose State
RP - Lenny Linsky, Jr., Hawai'i
Player of the Year: Dusty Robinson, Jr., Fresno State
Pitcher of the Year: Greg Gonzalez, Sr., Fresno State
Freshman of the Year: Aaron Judge, Fresno State
Coach of the Year: Mike Trapasso, Hawai'i