FAYETTEVILLE – Zack Cox and Brett Eibner, members of the No. 15 University of Arkansas baseball team, have been named to the Ping!Baseball All-America Second Team, as announced Wednesday. Cox was slotted at his primary position of third base, while Eibner, an outfielder and pitcher for the Razorbacks, was selected as a utility player.
This marks the second All-America honor for Cox and Eibner as both players garnered recognition following their respective freshman seasons. Last season, Cox was named a Freshman All-American by Ping!Baseball, Collegiate Baseball and the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association. Eibner was a first-team Baseball America Freshman All-American in 2008.
Cox has turned in an outstanding season at the plate during his sophomore campaign. Heading into the NCAA Tempe Super Regional, the Louisville, Ky., native leads the Southeastern Conference with his .427 batting average. He opened the 2010 season with a 24-game hitting streak and followed that streak with a hit in 14 consecutive games. Cox has hit safely in 53 of 57 games this season with a team-high 33 multi-hit efforts. He also turned in a career-high six RBI this season against Alabama.
With a double in Monday’s decisive game of the Fayetteville Regional against Washington State, Cox collected his 97th hit of the season, equaling Arkansas’ single-season record (Matt Erickson, 1996). He is the first Razorback to eclipse the 90-hit mark since the 1997 season. Cox is second in the SEC in on-base percentage (.508), third in hits (97), tied for sixth in runs scored (64) and 10th in slugging percentage (.608).
In his third season in Cardinal and White, Eibner is enjoying a career season at the plate. He paces the Hogs’ offensive output with 21 home runs and 69 RBI, both career-high figures. The Houston, Texas, native has also posted a .337 batting average, 16 doubles and 63 runs scored. His 21 home runs this season are the third most by a Razorback in program history. As a two-way threat for Arkansas, Eibner has three wins on the mound and picked up his first career save this season. He tallied a season-high 10 strikeouts in a five-inning outing at Mississippi State.
Eibner opened the conference season with two home runs on the road against LSU to help the Razorbacks to the win. He finished the season with three multi-homer games, including a three-home run performance against Grambling in Arkansas’ opening game of Fayetteville Regional. He is the ninth player in program history to hit three home runs in a game. In addition to the three home runs, Eibner also registered a career-high seven RBI and five runs scored. He has also moved into fifth place on Arkansas’ all-time home runs list with 41 career blasts.
It was also announced Wednesday that Eibner is one of 10 semifinalists in the running for the 2010 John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year Award. He is one of three players whose teams have advanced to the Super Regional round of the Division I Baseball Championship. The Olerud Award will be presented July 2 as part of the College Baseball Awards Show in Lubbock, Texas.
With their victory Monday over Washington State, the Razorbacks have advanced to the Super Regional round where they will face top-ranked Arizona State, the tournament’s No. 1 national seed. Play begins Saturday with an 8 p.m. (CT) first pitch at Packard Stadium in Tempe, Ariz.