Eleven Cougars receive WCC post-season baseball honors
SAN MATEO, Calif. — Junior third baseman Austin Deming headlined 11 BYU baseball student-athletes who received West Coast Conference postseason honors on Tuesday. Deming was one of 13 individuals among the league's 10 teams named to the 2022 All-WCC First Team.
Sophomore shortstop Brock Watkins and three BYU pitchers—Nate Dahle, Cooper McKeehan and Jack Sterner—were named to the 13-member second team, while four Cougars were named All-WCC Honorable Mention—Mitch McIntyre, Cy Nielson, Ozzie Pratt, Bryce Robison and Ryan Sepede.
In addition, BYU newcomers Ozzie Pratt and Collin Reuter were selected to the WCC All-Freshman team.
A Santa Clara, Utah native, Deming led the Cougars in batting average (.302) and was in the top three in 12 offensive categories. He was second in games started (51), runs (33), hits (57), hit by pitch (10) and third in at bats (189), doubles (14), home runs (5), RBI (28) slugging (.466) and OBP (.378). He was named WCC Player of the Week on May 9.
Watkins was an ironman for the Cougars this season starting all 53 games at shortstop. The sophomore from Pleasant Grove, Utah, led BYU in seven offensive categories, including at bats (209), runs (39), hits (63), homers (8), triples (3), total bases (101) and slugging (.483). He was second in batting average (.301) and RBI (33) and third in walks (17) and stolen bases (4).
McKeehan, a sophomore, led the Cougar pitching staff with the lowest ERA (1.59), fewest earned runs (4) and batting average against (.163). The lefty from Matthews, North Carolina, appeared in 22 games with a record of 2-1 and one save.
Sterner led BYU in games started (13), innings pitched (69) and strikeouts (61). The sophomore right hander from Laguna Niguel, California, compiled a record of 4-3, with an ERA or 3.26, best among Cougar starters.
Junior right hander Dahle from Tremonton, Utah, was in the top four statistically in five pitching categories during the season, including ERA (2.57), appearances (24), innings pitched (42), strike outs (59) and batting average against (.241).
McIntyre was one of five Cougars named honorable mention by the WCC in 2022. The centerfielder from Stansbury Park, Utah, received his third WCC post-season honor, having been named second team in 2019 and 2021. He led the Cougars in seven offensive categories, on base percentage (.416), stolen bases (10), walks (37), HBP (11), doubles (17) and triples (3). The senior is the all-time BYU career leader in hit by pitch (33) and is top 10 in games played, at bats, walks and doubles.
Junior outfielder Sepede of Las Vegas, led the Cougars in RBI (45) and was in the top three in eight other offensive categories, including batting average (.289), hits (54), total bases (89), walks (19), slugging (.476), doubles (16) and triples.
Sophomore relief pitchers Bryce Robison and Cy Nielson were also named honorable mention. Robison led the Cougars with a record of 7-1 and had one save. The right hander from Las Vegas was second in innings pitched (60.2) and was named WCC Pitcher of the Week on April 11. Nielson led BYU in appearances with 27 and held opponents to the third-lowest batting average at .203. The lefty from Spanish Fork, Utah, went 3-0 in the regular season with a 2.78 ERA.
Rounding out the honorable mention selections was freshman second baseman Ozzie Pratt from Oxford, Mississippi, hit .288 on the year and was top five in several offensive categories, including hits (45) and stolen bases (5). Pratt was named the WCC Player of the Week on April 11 and was also selected to the 2022 WCC All-Freshman team.
Freshman catcher Collin Reuter started 42 of the 52 games behind the plate for the Cougars and joined teammate Pratt on the WCC All-Freshman Team. Reuter, from Olive Branch, Mississippi, was second on the team in home runs with six, while scoring 28 runs and driving in 24 runs.
WCC awards were voted on by the league’s 10 head coaches.