DENVER – Three Redhawks have been selected to the 2019 Preseason All-Western Athletic Conference Baseball Team while the Seattle U squad was picked to finish fourth by a vote of the league's 10 head coaches, the WAC announced Wednesday.
Senior LHP Jake Prizina, junior third baseman Austin Lively and sophomore catcher/designated hitter Justin Mazzone all earned a spot on the 14-man preseason team. It is the first such honor for all three Redhawks.
Seattle U earned 54 points in the Preseason Coaches Poll, good for fourth place. Grand Canyon was the preseason favorite to win the 2019 WAC title with five first-place votes and 75 points, while the Lopes' Quin Cotton and New Mexico State's Brock Whittlesey were selected as the preseason Player and Pitcher of the Year, respectively. The Aggies earned three first-place votes and 74 points, while Sacramento State had two first-place votes and 69 points.
Prizina is the Redhawks' top returning starting pitcher after back-to-back stellar seasons as a sophomore and junior. The Sparks, Nev., native went 8-1 with a 3.82 ERA in 2018. He fanned 92 while walking just 16 in 99 innings.
Lively was one of four players to start all 56 games in 2018. He hit .316 while collecting 65 total hits - second most on the team. He added 10 doubles, two triples, two home runs, eight stolen bases and a team-high 48 runs scored.
Mazzone collected a team-high .339 batting average during his rookie campaign for the Redhawks. He started 29 games and appeared in 49. In 115 at bats, the Huntington Beach, Calif., native had 39 hits, including five doubles and three home runs, while driving in 19 runs and scoring 17 times.
The Redhawks return 17 total letterwinners from 2018, a squad that went 34-23 - the second most wins in Redhawk program history.
The 2019 season gets underway on February 15 as the Redhawks travel to Las Vegas for a three-game series at UNLV. Seattle U's home opener at Bannerwood Park is slated for February 22 (through February 24) against Omaha.
Season ticket packages for the 2019 Seattle University baseball season are on sale now.
Multiple ticket plan options are available, including an individual season-ticket for just $70, which includes access to the Redhawks' 27-game home slate. New this spring is a family pack of season tickets for as low as $30 per person. The family plan includes a minimum purchase of four season tickets for a total of $120. Single game tickets go on sale on Monday, Feb. 4.
2019 Preseason WAC Baseball Coaches Poll
Rank, Team (1st Place Votes), Points
1. Grand Canyon (5), 75
2. New Mexico State (3), 74
3. Sacramento State (2), 69
4. Seattle U, 54
T5. California Baptist, 37
T5. UTRGV, 37
7. CSU Bakersfield, 35
8. Northern Colorado, 27
9. Utah Valley, 26
10. Chicago State, 12
2019 Preseason All-WAC Team
C: Braden Williams, Sr., New Mexico State
1B: Caleb Henderson, Sr., New Mexico State
2B: Nick Gonzales, So., New Mexico State
3B: Austin Lively, Jr., Seattle U
3B: Pikai Winchester, Sr., Grand Canyon
SS: Joey Ortiz, Jr., New Mexico State
OF: Tristen Carranza, Sr., New Mexico State
OF: Quin Cotton, Jr., Grand Canyon
OF: Jack Pauley, Sr., Northern Colorado
UTL/DH: Justin Mazzone, So., Seattle U
SP: Jake Prizina, Sr., Seattle U
SP: Scott Randall, So., Sacramento State
SP: Brock Whittlesey, Sr., New Mexico State
RP: Tanner Dalton, Sr., Sacramento State
Player of the Year: Quin Cotton, Jr., Grand Canyon
Pitcher of the Year: Brock Whittlesey, Sr., New Mexico State