(Editor's note: MSUB Athletics release)
PORTLAND, Ore. – Being singled out after an impressive season debut last week, Montana State University Billings senior Dylan Barkley was named the Great Northwest Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Week announced by the conference office on Monday.
Barkley threw five shutout innings in the Yellowjackets’ opening game of the 2022 season, and limited host Cal State Los Angeles to just two hits. The left-hander finished one away from his career high in strikeouts, fanning nine hitters in the strong performance. “Dylan did a fantastic job of mixing speeds and pitching to his strengths,” said MSUB head coach Derek Waddoups. “He really stayed composed with runners on and made his best pitches. This was an outstanding performance to start off the year and set a tone for our pitching staff.”
Barkley navigated through a pair of trying situations during the start, the first one being with a runner at third base and one out in the second inning. Barkley struck out the next hitter before getting ahead 0-2 and coaxing a fly ball to strand the runner and end the frame.
The Golden Eagles threatened again in the bottom of the fourth, loading the bases with just one out. Barkley won a six-pitch battle for another strikeout, before ending the frame with a fly ball to keep MSUB’s lead intact. He finished off his outing with a clean fifth inning and struck out the final two batters he faced.
Friday was the fourth time in Barkley’s career he has thrown at least two innings and surrendered no runs, and it was his most strikeouts in a game since he had a career-high 10 against Western Oregon on Feb. 29, 2020.
The win was the ninth of Barkley’s career, moving him into a tie for ninth place in school history in victories. Barkley also upped his career strikeout total to 136, moving him up one spot to fifth in program history. Barkley’s 25 career starts rank him seventh in school history as well.
This is Barkley’s second-career GNAC Pitcher of the Week honor, after he claimed the award on March 11, 2019 during his freshman season. It is MSUB’s first weekly award of the 2022 season.
The Yellowjackets (2-2) play a four-game series at Cal Poly Pomona this weekend, with the opening game scheduled for Thursday evening at 5 p.m. (PST).