(Editor's note: MSUB Athletics release)
BILLINGS – Earning National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association West Region Player of the Week for the fourth time in his career, Montana State University Billings baseball senior Daniel Cipriano took home the honor announced by the organization on Wednesday.
The regional weekly award came after Cipriano was named the Great Northwest Athletic Conference Player of the Week for the fifth time in his career on Monday. He is now eligible for the NCBWA National Player of the Week award as well.
Cipriano homered three times throughout another stellar offensive weekend – the second of which was the 28th of his career which broke the Yellowjackets’ all-time record. Cipriano moved past previous record-holder Ryan Myers (27 home runs, 2017-18) in unique fashion, blasting a first-pitch grand slam over the fence in left field. He followed with a two-run homer in the series finale, as he ended the weekend tied for second in GNAC history with 29 career home runs. The GNAC all-time record is 43 home runs, held by Chandler Tracy of Saint Martin’s University.
“Cipriano had an outstanding weekend for us at the plate,” said MSUB head coach Derek Waddoups. “He continues to produce in the big moments and drive in runs consistently. He is a fantastic leader and large part of our team.”
Overall in the Yellowjackets’ four-game series at UC Colorado Springs, Cipriano hit .533 (8-for-15) with three doubles and 11 RBIs. He slugged 1.333 on the weekend and reached base at a clip of .562, while scoring five runs to lead MSUB’s offense.
Cipriano also reached the career-minimum plateau of 250 at-bats during the weekend, making him MSUB’s all-time leader in batting average (.392), on-base percentage (.502), and slugging percentage (.825). Among GNAC all-time leaders, Cipriano ranks second in batting average, and first in both on-base percentage and slugging.
Through eight games this spring, Cipriano leads the GNAC in slugging percentage at 1.000 and doubles with five, while ranking second in RBIs with 14 and home runs with four.
This is Cipriano’s fifth-career GNAC Player of the Week award, moving him into a tie for second-most weekly honors in GNAC history. The conference record is six-career player of the week awards, held by Sean McDonald of Northwest Nazarene University.
It is the second GNAC Player of the Week award for MSUB’s baseball team this spring, after leadoff hitter Will Riley earned the honor last week.
The Yellowjackets (0-8) open GNAC play this week with a four-game series at Northwest Nazarene University. Doubleheaders are scheduled for Friday at 3 p.m. and Saturday at noon.