Benitez Tabbed PBC Pitcher Of The Year; Three Earn First-Team Accolades

May 09, 2017

FLORENCE, S.C. – The No. 15 University of South Carolina Aiken baseball team had three student-athletes earn first-team all-conference honors, which were announced Tuesday evening at Francis Marion.

Senior Joseph Benitez picked up PBC Pitcher of the Year honors and was a first-team all-league selection. Fellow senior Mitchell Price garnered first-team all-conference accolades while junior Brian Parreira picked up first-team honors as well.

Benitez, a senior from Crofton, Md., leads the league with 11 wins and tops the conference with 125 strikeouts. The 125 strikeouts are second-most nationally while the 11 victories are the third most in Division II. Benitez sports a 2.01 ERA while having tossed 103 frames. He held opponents to a .217 batting average and is in the top 10 in Division II in strikeout-to-walk ratio. Benitez has registered 10 or more strikeouts five times in 2017. He is the first USC Aiken student-athlete to be named PBC Pitcher of the Year.

Parreira, a catcher from Annapolis, Md., picked up the honor of becoming the first USC Aiken standout to earn NCBWA National Hitter of the Week accolades earlier in the year. For the season, he batted .343 and pounded out 47 hits in 137 at bats. Nearly half of his base knocks (21) went for extra bases, including 14 doubles and seven round-trippers. Parreira drove in 45 runs while crossing home 30 times. He slugged a career-high .599 and posted a .412 on-base percentage.

Price, an outfielder from Columbia, S.C., put up some very impressive numbers during the regular season. He garnered a .338 batting average while pounding out 66 hits – 36 of which went for extra bases. Price tallied 16 doubles, six triples and 14 round-trippers en route to a 57-RBI campaign. He slugged .697 while sporting a .434 on-base percentage. Price also crossed home plate 61 times while earning 48 starts.

First Team

1b – Mason McClellan, Columbus State
2b – Michael Bell, North Georgia
3b – Cal Gentry, Georgia College
SS – Brandon Benson, Georgia College
C – Brian Perreira, USC Aiken
DH – Ryan Patterson, Armstrong State
UT – Zach Odom, Young Harris
OF – Michael Gouge, North Georgia
OF – Mitchell Price, USC Aiken
OF – Dylan Jones, Flagler
OF – Mike Warren, Armstrong State
SP – Joseph Benitez, USC Aiken
SP – Caleb Kutsche, Columbus State
SP – Steven Bower, North Georgia
SP – Dylan Peppers, North Georgia
RP – Kyle Ramsey, UNC Pembroke

Second Team

1b – Sebastian Samuels, Montevallo
1b – Ethan Baucom, UNC Pembroke
2b – Caleb Ledbetter, Montevallo
3b – Devin Gearhart, North Georgia
3b – Alex Kranick, Georgia Southwestern
SS – Connor Hoover, North Georgia?
C – Brandon Purcell, Georgia College
DH – Bill Leroy, North Georgia
UT – Ethan Crout, Flagler
UT – Jarratt Mobley, UNC Pembroke
OF – Wesley Wommack, Georgia College
OF – Logan Mattix, Georgia College
OF – Nick Debo, UNC Pembroke
OF – Roberto Rivera, UNC Pembroke
SP – Daniel McCrary, North Georgia
SP – Michael Maiocco, Flagler
SP – Anthony Burke, UNC Pembroke
SP – Michael Livingston, Young Harris
RP – Josh Bryan, North Georgia
RP – Grant Khan, Georgia College

Elite 15 Award Presented by EAB
Nick Debo, UNC Pembroke

Player of the Year
Brandon Benson, Georgia College

Pitcher of the Year
Joseph Benitez, USC Aiken

Freshman of the Year
Sebastian Samuels, Montevallo

Coach of the Year
Tom Cantrell, North Georgia

USC Aiken, a comprehensive university in the University of South Carolina system, offers undergraduate and master’s degrees to more than 3,500 students in 50 programs of study. USC Aiken is ranked the #1 public regional college in the South by U.S. News & World Report’s guide "America’s Best Colleges." The 2017 distinction marks USC Aiken’s 19th consecutive ranking among the top three in this category and its 12th time in first place.