LSUE’s Hester earns All-American status

Posted at 9:25 PM, Jun 11, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-11 22:25:45-04

EUNICE, La. – After one of the most dominating single seasons on the mound in LSU Eunice history, Zach Hester has earned All-American honors.  Hester was given first-team honors by the NJCAA, the association announced on Monday.

The sophomore is the tenth Bengal to earn a first-team nomination and just the second pitcher, joining LSU Eunice Hall of Fame member Kenny Plaisance.  Hester joins the 18 other former Bengals to be named a NJCAA All-American and first since Nick Coomes and Zach LaFleur in 2016.

Hester served as the Bengals’ opening night starter and was the "Game One" arm throughout the season.  The Samford signee went 13-1 on the season with a 2.34 earned run average, striking out 133 batters.  His wins and strikeout total both were tops in NJCAA Division II.

In LSU Eunice’s postseason run to the National Championship, Hester’s light shined brightest.  The World Series Pitcher of the Tournament, Hester went 3-0 in four starts during the Region and National Tournaments combined.  The sophomore tossed 27 innings, giving up just four runs off 12 hits and six walks while striking out 36 batters in that span.

The Bengals won all four times Hester took the hill, including capturing the Region 23 and National Championships.  Hester threw eight innings in LSUE’s title clinching win, receiving a no-decision after giving up three runs off three hits and three walks while striking out nine batters.

Hester etched his name all over the Bengal single-season record books.  The Vidor, Texas product finished second in strikeouts (133), tied for fifth in wins (13) and seventh in innings pitched (100.0).  The LSUE pitching unit also set the program record for strikeouts in a season (576) and opponent batting average (.215).

Hester is one of four Region 23 representatives on the NJCAA All-American team, joined by Mississippi Gulf Coast’s Brandon Parker (first team), Meridan’s Trace Jordan (first team) and Pearl River’s Simon Landry (second team).

The NJCAA honored 36 student-athletes in the three-team All-American squad.

2018 NJCAA Division II Baseball All-American Team

First Team
P             Blake Flint                           Paradise Valley (AZ)        So.
P             Zach Hester                        LSU Eunice (LA)                 So.
P             Chas Sagedahl                   Southeastern (IA)            Fr.
C             Jacob Padilla                       Murray State (OK)           So.
INF         Josh Bristyan                      Paradise Valley (AZ)        So.
INF         Izaya Fullard                       Kirkwood (IA)                    Fr.
INF         Kelani Luke                         Lackawanna (PA)              So.
INF         Juan Paulino                       Western Oklahoma St.   So.
OF          Aaron Palensky                 Southeast (NE)                  Fr.
OF          Brandon Parker                 Miss. Gulf Coast                Fr.
OF          Joe Quinones-Mason     Pitt (NC)                               So.
DH          Trace Jordan                      Meridian (MS)                   So.

Second Team
P             Joey Baran                          Lackawanna (PA)              So.
P             Tyler Buchanan                 Pasco-Hernando (FL)      So.
P             Wyatt Rush                         Lansing (MI)                       Fr.
C             Martin Muzik                     Wake Tech (NC)                So.
INF         Alex Cimaroli                      McHenry (IL)                      So.
INF         Gavin Homer                      Kellogg (MI)                       So.
INF         Simon Landry                     Pearl River (MS)                So.
INF         Trystin Raikes                    Parkland (IL)                       So.
OF          Bryce Butler                       Kankakee (IL)                     So.
OF          Dan Fry                                 Allegany (MD)                   So.
OF          Tyler Paulsen                     Parkland (IL)                       So.
DH          EJ Taylor                               Northern OK-Enid            Fr.

Third Team
P             Ryan Anderson                 McHenry (IL)                      So.
P             Brock Begue                       Cuyahoga (OH)                  Fr.
P             Julian Smith                        Catawba Valley (NC)       So.
C             Ryan Parquette                McHenry (IL)                      Fr.
INF         Luke Baranchak                 Mercyhurst NE (PA)        So.
INF         Conner Denning               Mesa (AZ)                           Fr.
INF         Scott McKeon                    Brunswick (NC)                 So.
INF         Handy Rodriguez              CCBC Catonsville (MD)   So.
OF          Scott Giordano                  Westchester (NY)            So.
OF          Griffin Keller                       Northern OK-Enid            So.
OF          Hunter Ruhstorfer           Lansing (MI)                       So.
DH          Phil Ferranti                      Monroe CC (NY)               Fr.