LAWRENCEVILLE, NJ (April 11, 2017)– After a perfect 4-0 week, highlighted by a three-game sweep of conference foe Saint Peter’s, the Rider University baseball team had a pair of players honored with weekly recognition by the league office on Tuesday afternoon. Freshman pitcher John Yocum (Easton, PA/Freedom) was named the MAAC Rookie of the Week and catcher Lee Lipinski (Glen Arm, MD/Calvert Hall) was tabbed as the MAAC Player of the Week.
It is the first weekly honor of Yocum’s young career and it is also the first time Lipinski has received weekly league-wide distinction as well. Three Broncs have now earned weekly recognition from the MAAC this spring after junior lefty Nick Margevicius (North Royalton, OH/Saint Ignatius) was honored as the MAAC Pitcher of the Week in mid-March.
“Yocum has stepped into the weekend rotation and has been very consistent,” Rider Head Coach Barry Davis said. “With no walks and scattering hits, a pitcher can be very successful and he has been of late."
In two appearances on the bump last week, Yocum tossed eight scoreless and scattered just six hits, while striking out nine hitters without walking any. He opened the week by tossing a scoreless inning in a non-conference win versus NJIT at home. In his MAAC debut over the weekend, he threw a career-best seven scoreless innings and struck out a career-high eight hitters. His strong outing gave him his second win of the season as he scattered five hits in a 7-0 victory at Saint Peter’s. It marked the first start for Yocum where he pitched more than six innings and had a WHIP of lower than 1.00.
“Lipinski had a terrific week,” Davis noted. “He has played solid defense and has given us quality at-bats almost every time he has stepped to the plate. It is well deserved.”
Lipinski had a strong week for the Broncs, hitting .600 (6-for-10) as Rider went 4-0. Four of his six hits on the week went for extra-bases, including his second home run of the season. He posted a slugging percentage of 1.200 to go along with an impressive .737 on-base percentage. During the week he also stole one base, had six RBIs, scored six runs, had 12 total bases, was hit by three pitches and walked five times. He reached base safely in his first eight plate appearances over the course of two games to start the week. His biggest game of the week came against Saint Peter’s when he went 3-for-3 with three runs scored, three RBIs, a double and a home run.
The Broncs return to action on Wednesday, April 12, with a home non-conference clash against Wagner that is set to begin at 3:30 pm from Sonny Pittaro Field. The tilt is the first of four straight home games for Rider as the Broncs enter the contest on a five-game winning streak.