(Editor’s note: MSUB Athletics release)
PORTLAND, Ore. – Landon Peterson caught all 531 pitches thrown by the Montana State University Billings baseball pitching staff over the weekend, and he was selected as the Great Northwest Athletic Conference Player of the Week announced by the conference office Monday.
Peterson was a leader behind the plate defensively and in the batter’s box, as he helped the Yellowjackets break the school record for consecutive victories (10) and win their fourth straight GNAC series to enter the midway point of the season atop the standings. “Offensively Landon had a big weekend for us, but what was most impressive was him defensively behind the plate,” said MSUB head coach Aaron Sutton. “Catching four games in a weekend is tough to do, and he picked the club up big time. This is a well-deserved honor for him.”
The fifth-year senior’s big weekend started in his very first at-bat, when he drilled a two-run home run to cap off MSUB’s five-run first inning in the series opener on Saturday. Peterson then hit a grand slam on Sunday in Game 3, and finished the series with a team-high eight RBIs. He batted .385 (5-for-13), reached base at a clip of .556 thanks to drawing five walks, and posted a slugging percentage of .846.
Defensively, Peterson was error-free in 35 chances behind the plate, while handling the Yellowjackets’ pitching staff expertly over the entire series.
Peterson provided multiple clutch hits on the weekend, including a one-out single during the Yellowjackets’ two-run third inning in Game 2. He then came around to score on a ground out, which proved to be the winning run in the 3-2 triumph for the ‘Jackets.
With MSUB leading 1-0 in the top of the third inning in Game 3, Peterson worked a full count with the bases loaded and one out. He sent the sixth pitch of his at-bat well out of the park, as it cleared the bleachers in right field for a grand slam to make it a 5-0 ballgame. It was a key hit to push the game open in the eventual 6-0 win for the ‘Jackets.
The two long balls upped Peterson’s total to four on the season, and overall he has hit six in his career with the ‘Jackets. He is batting .302 and is second on the team with 18 RBIs, and defensively he is fielding at a clip of .973 with just four errors in 147 chances.
This is the fifth straight week the ‘Jackets have had a GNAC Player of the Week, and it is the sixth weekly award for the team overall. It is Peterson’s first-career GNAC Player of the Week award.
The Yellowjackets (14-14, 14-6 GNAC) make their 2019 home debut this weekend with a four-game series against Saint Martin’s University scheduled for Saturday and Sunday at Dehler Park. First pitch is at 1 p.m. both days, and live video with play-by-play commentary and live statistics will be available through the MSUB Stretch Internet portal online.