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Eight UConn baseball players named to All-Big East teams

The Huskies were the top team in the conference all season and have five players on the All-Big East First Team.

Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

After topping the Big East with a 16-5 conference record and tying a program record with 43 regular-season wins, UConn baseball was heavily represented in all-conference honors. The Huskies had eight players — the most in the conference — named to the 28 spots across the All-Big East first and second teams.

Matt Donlan, Pat Gallagher, Korey Morton, Austin Peterson, and Erik Stock represented UConn on the first team, with the latter two earning unanimous selections. Casey Dana, David Smith, and Enzo Stefanoni earned spots on the second team for the Huskies.

Despite having eight out of 28 possible players across the All-Conference teams and two unanimous selections, no Huskies took home individual awards. Xavier’s Luke Franzoni and Creighton’s Alan Roden split the Player of the Year award while Dylan Tebrake of Creighton took home Pitcher of the Year.

Donlan, the Huskies’ ironman catcher, made an immediate impact in his first season after transferring from Stonehill College. The Guilford, Connecticut native hit .279 with nine home runs while serving as an elite backstop, gunning down 21 would-be base stealers and appearing in 50 games as a catcher.

Gallagher served as the team’s Saturday starting pitcher this season, posting an 8-3 record over nearly 83 innings. He threw a complete game in the Huskies’ 13-0 win over St. John’s on April 9 and posted a season-high 11 strikeouts against Rhode Island.

Despite playing in only 31 games and starting just 20 of them, Morton still managed his way onto the first team by hitting .440 and slugging .690, both the highest percentages on the team. He also added three home runs and 10 doubles while continuing to show solid speed on the base paths, stealing six bags on eight attempts.

Stock and Peterson served as the anchors for the Huskies’ offense and pitching staff respectively. Stock once again established himself as one of the region’s best hitters with a .390 average, nine home runs, and a team-high 89 hits. The senior outfielder also posted a 1.088 OPS and walked three times more than he struck out.

Peterson, the Huskies’ towering Friday night starter, was lights out all season as UConn’s ace. The senior struck out 121 batters while walking just 13 and posted 3.46 ERA in a team-best 93 23 innings. He led the Huskies with a 9-2 record and held batters to just a .235 average.

Dana, Smith, and Stefanoni rounded out the second team as important contributors to this year’s squad. Dana tied Ben Huber for the team lead in home runs with 11, while Smith posted nearly a third of the team’s stolen bases with 20 on 24 attempts. Both batters hit over .300 on the season and combined to score over 100 runs. Stefanoni, a Harvard grad transfer, shined as the Huskies’ Sunday starter, posting a 6-1 record with a 2.91 ERA, the lowest amongst any starter.