FORT MYERS, Fla. – Having already claimed the Atlantic Sun Pitcher of the Week and one of Louisville Slugger’s National Players of the Week, sophomore left-hander Brandon Bixler (Oviedo, Fla./Hagerty HS) earned more recognition for his 14 strikeout gem last weekend, as CollegeBaseballInsider.com selected him to one of its Regional Players of the Week.
Earning his third award in as many days, Bixler was named the Southeast Pitcher of the Week for his 14 strikeout performance in the A-Sun series finale with Kennesaw State on Sunday.
Closing out the series on the mound, Bixler provided one of his best starts of the year, fanning 14 batters in just seven innings of work while allowing just one hit and one walk in his 105-pitch outing. While not surrendering a hit until the fourth inning, the Oviedo, Fla. product struck out the side in both the second and seventh innings and tallied a streak of six-straight strikeouts from the first through third innings while improving to 3-4 on the year.
The 14 strikeouts were just one off the program record of 15 set by former FGCU Collegiate Baseball Player of the Year and current Chicago White Sox lefty Chris Sale, which he established in a complete-game one-hitter against Belmont on April 23, 2010 at Swanson Stadium.
Through 10 appearances this season, including eight starts, Bixler holds a 4.24 ERA in 46.2 innings of work, accumulating 56 strikeouts and holding opponents to a .153 average at the plate.
The FGCU pitchers recorded a 1.00 ERA and combined for 32 strikeouts with just three walks, while surrender only 13 hits through the trio of games last weekend. Highlighting the effort on the bump was a complete game victory on Friday from sophomore Ricky Knapp (Port Charlotte, Fla./Port Charlotte HS), a 12-strikeout outing from senior righty Jason Forjet (Pembroke Pines, Fla./Nova HS) on Saturday, and the 14 punch outs from Bixler in the finale.
The Eagles return to the field on Wednesday, May 2 as in-state foe FIU travels to Swanson Stadium for a non-conference contest beginning at 6:30 p.m. Live stats, in-game Twitter updates (@FGCUBaseball), results and recaps will be available at www.FGCUAthletics.com.