Big South announces baseball players of the week

Charlotte, NC - From Big South Sports

CHARLOTTE, NC - VMI senior first baseman Jordan Ballard (Troy Va.) and Charleston Southern junior pitcher Tyler Thornburg (Atlanta) have been named the Big South Conference's Choice Hotels Player of the Week and The Crons Brand Pitcher of the Week, respectively, for games played March 8-14, it was announced today by the League office.

Ballard hit .571 (8-14) with six home runs, 14 RBI, seven runs scored, one double, two walks, a .611 on-base average and a 1.929 slugging percentage in five games last week. He had three games in four days with at least four runs driven in, and had two multi-home run games in three days. On Monday, Ballard came off the bench and hit a solo home run against Bryant, then hit a first inning grand slam and a seventh inning solo shot in a 12-8 win over La Salle on Thursday. In Saturday's doubleheader against La Salle, he reached base in the first game on a hit-by-pitch, then blasted two home runs and had four RBI in the nightcap. In Sunday's finale, he went 3-4 with four RBI, and was a triple short of the cycle. Ballard, who is now tied for fourth in VMI history with 31 career home runs, was named one of Collegiate Baseball's National Players of the Week for his efforts. Meanwhile, VMI is off to its best start in school history at 14-1 and is ranked No. 30 in this week's Collegiate Baseball national poll.

Thornburg threw a complete game gem Sunday at No. 6 Florida in leading Charleston Southern to a 6-3 win over the Gators. He held Florida to season-lows in both runs (3) and hits (7), in addition to a .212 batting average. Thornburg struck out 11 batters, including two in the bottom of the ninth inning to give CSU the victory. Thornburg's line last week: 1-0, 3.00 ERA, 9 IP, 7 H, 3 R/ER, 3 BB, 11 SO, .212 opponents' batting average.

Other Player of the Week Nominees: Derek Smith (Charleston Southern), Steve Davis (Coastal Carolina), Max Fulginiti (High Point), Mack Hite (Presbyterian College), Sam Roberts (VMI) and Chas Crane (Winthrop)

Other Pitcher of the Week Nominees: Matt Rein (Coastal Carolina), Mikel Rodenberg (High Point), Jesse Harmon (Presbyterian College), Bobby Bolling (Radford), Sam Roberts (VMI) and Tommy Lawrence (Winthrop).