Holt wins freshman honor, Tech gets five on first team

Holt wins freshman honor, Tech gets five on first team

Gabe Holt Gabe Holt

LUBBOCK, Texas – Texas Tech baseball picked up seven end-of-year awards from the Big 12, the league announced today, highlighted by the program’s second consecutive freshman of the year honor.

Gabe Holt, the Bonaire, Georgia, native, became the fifth Big 12 Freshman of the Year in school history, giving Tech back-to-back awards in the category for the first time in the program’s record books. It is also the second time a team has won the accolade in back-to-back years. 

The award is one of three for Holt, as he was named a first team All-Big 12 member & was a unanimous selection to the Big 12 All-Freshman squad. Tech has had at least one representative on the freshman team every year since 2011. 

Holt was one of a program-best five Red Raiders to be named to the All-Big 12 first team, joined by senior Zach Rheams & sophomores Josh Jung, Caleb Kilian and Grant Little. It passed a previous-best of four first team honorees set in 2016 & 2017, and was the most of any school in the conference this year.

Jung & Little were named to their respective lists as unanimous selections for the second-straight season, as both were voted on by every head coach to the All-Freshman team in 2017. Jung was also a second-team winner last season. 

Holt ranked in the top 10 overall this season in nearly every offensive category, beating out freshmen & upperclassmen alike, as he topped all Big 12 student-athletes with a perfect 27-for-27 in stolen bases. He also ranked fourth in hits (74), third in runs (57), sixth in walks (36), eighth in batting average and ninth in on-base percentage (.444).

Despite leading the Big 12 in five different categories, Jung only picked up first team accolades. He paced the conference in batting average by a wide margin, hits (84), RBI (71), runs scored (62) and on-base percentage (.488). He was also second in total bases & triples, fourth in slugging percentage and seventh in home runs.

Little was closely behind Jung with his offensive numbers, following him in second in batting average, RBI and on-base percentage, while ranking fourth in hits & runs, third in total bases, slugging percentage & doubles and sixth in homers.

After taking over the starting designated hitter role after the start of conference play, Rheams burst onto the scene finish seventh in batting average in Big 12 games. He was third in homers, hitting eight in league play & 13 overall, while driving in the second-most RBI (31), ranking second in OBP (.470) and third in slugging (.735) in conference play.

Kilian led all Big 12 pitchers with eight wins this season, six in league action, posting an 8-1 record while holding opponents to a conference-low .198 batting average at the plate. He put together a 2.21 ERA over 16 appearances and eight starts, striking out 52 while allowing just 14 earned runs over 57.0 innings of work.

The Red Raiders return to action Wednesday, May 23, against TCU at 7:30 p.m. in the opening round of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship at Bricktown Ballpark in Oklahoma City.


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