Four University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff Golden Lions Baseball student-athletes have earned All-Southwestern Athletic Conference honors, including two first-team selection, the SWAC announced Friday in a news release.
Earning first-team accolades were sophomore infielder Jarficur Parker and outfielder Sergio Esparza. Senior second baseman Ryan Mallison and catcher Ricardo Sanchez were named to the second team.
This is Esparza’s second time being named to the All-Conference team. Esparza finished the 2018 season with 165 at-bats, batting .303 and starting in 44 games out of 45. He led the team in hits with 50, runs batted in with 38 and was third in home runs with four.
Parker was named to his first all-conference team and was the first true freshman to ever start at shortstop for UAPB. He started in 33-of-35 games at shortstop, hit a team-best .331 with 23 runs scored and had 17 RBIs and 10 walks. He also grabbed a total of 42 base hits with a slugging percentage of .402.
Sanchez played in 44 games, making 42 starts behind the plate at catcher. He hit .272 with 28 runs scored and 24 RBIs. He collected a total of 37 base hits with 11 doubles, led the team with three triples and recorded one home run, and he also ended the season with a .419 slugging percentage and a .047 on-base percentage. Sanchez was 7-of-10 in stolen bases attempts and on the field had a .959 fielding percentage
Mallison flashed a solid glove, making just four errors in 43 games for a .978 fielding percentage. He played in 44 games, making 43 starts while finishing the season with a .284 batting average. Mallison also was tied for second on the team with 44 hits, 33 runs scored and 22 RBIs, which included five doubles and one triple. He was 7-of-10 in stolen bases.