PHOENIX, Ariz. --- For the second straight year, Jon Bengard was named Pacific West Conference Pitcher of the Year as conference champion California Baptist University racked up seven mentions on the 2013 All-PacWest Baseball Team, which was released Thursday.
Zach Esquerra was named PacWest Player of the Year in addition to Bengard’s honor.
Ryan Cathers (shortstop), Blair Moore (third base), Esquerra (outfield) and his twin brother Luke Esquerra (outfield) and Bengard all received first team recognition. Matt Daugherty (first base) and David Herd (pitcher) were named to the third team.
Bengard and Moore are the only repeat first teamers from a season ago.
Bengard put together another career year and became the first player in conference history to win two straight pitcher of the year honors. During the regular season, Bengard went 11-1 with a 2.21 ERA, leading the PacWest in wins and strikeouts (106) in 102 innings pitched. Opponents hit just .202 against him and he only allowed more than two earned runs in a start just twice in 15 starts and allowed one earned run or less 10 times.
Meanwhile, Esquerra, who earned second team honors a season ago, put together the best season of his career, hitting .382, second in the PacWest, and he led the league and was fourth in all of college baseball (NCAA Division I, II, III, NAIA, NCCAA) with 17 home runs. He also led the PacWest with 51 runs and was third with 15 doubles and 47 RBI.
Moore was sixth in the PacWest, hitting .371 to go along with eight home runs, 15 doubles, 42 runs and 41 RBIs to earn his second straight first-team honor. His 15 doubles was third in the PacWest and 42 runs was fourth.
After just 38 career at-bats in three season combined, Cathers started 44 games at shortstop this year and hit a career-best .360, which was the eighth-best mark in the PacWest, to go along with nine doubles and 20 runs. He also had the second-fewest errors among PacWest shortstops, committing just eight in 168 chances.
Luke Esquerra rounds out the first team selections after hitting .380, third-best in the PacWest. He also was fourth with 42 runs and his 62 hits were tied for fourth as well. He also hit a career-best eight home runs and had 11 doubles and 35 RBIs.
Daugherty earned second team honors last year and hit .319 with eight home runs, 13 doubles, 43 runs and 41 RBIs. His 43 runs was good for third in the PacWest.
Herd finished 7-3 with a 3.14 ERA. He struck out 62 in a career-high 91.2 innings and walked just 11. He tossed a team-leading six complete games.
The Lancers finished the regular season 33-17 and won their second straight PacWest title, going 26-10. It was their fourth consecutive conference championship after winning two straight in their final two years in the GSAC.