Auburn's Hunter Morris named SEC "Player Of The Year"

AUBURN, AL. – Hunter Morris has been named the Southeastern Conference Player of the Year and was joined on the All-SEC First Team by outfielders Brian Fletcher and Trent Mummey and designated hitter Kevin Patterson. On the All-SEC second team from Auburn was left-handed pitcher Grant Dayton and catcher Ryan Jenkins. Left-handed pitcher Cory Luckie was named the SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year and right-handed pitcher Austin Hubbard was named to the SEC Community Service Team.

Mummey was also named to the SEC's Defensive Team.

Morris, from Huntsville, joined a very elite group of players as he becomes just the second player in league history to be named the SEC Freshman of the Year and the SEC Player of the Year. At the conclusion of the regular season he led the SEC in slugging percentage (.767), hits (94), home runs (20) and total baseas (1818), was second in runs scored (60), third in RBI (67) and fifth in batting average (.398).

"It started three years ago, as soon as I got to Auburn. A lot has gone into it (winning SEC Player of the Year)," Morris said. "There have been a lot of struggles, but the most important thing for me is what went on last summer. As soon as we got done playing I took it upon myself to try and change my body. Dropping 25 to 30 pounds made a huge difference, not only in my hitting but also in my defense, everything that goes into the game, and it has all paid off. It has been exciting and I am trying to enjoy it right now."

In SEC-only games, Morris led the league in slugging (.816), runs scored (34), triples (three) and home runs (12), was second in hits (51) and RBI (37) and was third in batting average (.408), collecting at least one hit in 28 out of 30 SEC games.

Morris becomes Auburn's second SEC Player of the Year, joining Tim Hudson (1997), and joins Stephen Head of Ole Miss as the only player in league history to win both awards.

Fletcher, from Fayetteville, Ga., leads the SEC in RBI (70) and home runs (20), is second in slugging percentage (.700) and total bases (159), is fifth in hits (82), eighth in runs scored (57) and 12th in batting average (.361). Auburn's everyday left fielder, he leads the team with 27 multi-hit games and 22 multi-RBI games, and has hit two home runs in four different SEC games this season.

In SEC-only games, Fletcher hit .354 with 34 runs scored and 31 RBI with 10 doubles, a triple and nine home runs.

Mummey, from Pinson, missed the first 28 games of the regular season but made his presence known when he returned for the fourth SEC series of the year. Helping Auburn to a 20-7 record when he was in the starting lineup, he hit 15 home runs, 12 against SEC pitching, with a .380 batting average, driving in 45 runs and scoring 40. In SEC-only games, he hit .348 with 34 RBI and 29 runs scored, with his RBI totals ranking second on the team and his runs scored third in SEC games.

A Gold Glove winning centerfielder as a sophomore, he was placed on the SEC All-Defensive Team for the second straight season. In 57 chances in SEC play, he had a perfect fielding percentage, the second straight season he has not committed an error in SEC play.

Paterson, a designated hitter from Birmingham, hit .407 in SEC play, blasting 11 home runs in 54 at bats and finished the SEC season with a 1.056 slugging percentage. Over the course of the entire season, he has hit three doubles, two triples and 16 home runs for a .849 slugging percentage, with his 16 home runs tying for sixth in the league.

Dayton, from Huntsville, finished the regular season having thrown 80 innings, which is 11th in the SEC. His eight wins are tied for second in the league, with seven of them coming against SEC competition, a league best. His 3.92 ERA against SEC teams was 10th in the league. Dayton's won his last first three SEC starts and his last four with his only loss coming in a complete game effort at Vanderbilt. His season-high 10 strike outs came in a 13-2 series-clinching win at Arkansas as he won series-clinchers twice, helped avoid a sweep two other times and finished off three sweeps.

Jenkins, a fifth-year senior from Millbrook, started 21 games behind the plate and hit .408 against SEC competition, tying Morris for the team lead. In 76 at bats, he had eight doubles and six home runs, driving in

24 RBI. Defensively he allowed just nine stolen bases in SEC play, throwing out four attempted steals. A team captain, he turned in his finest season in his last, going hitless in back-to-back games just once this season, and that came in the first month of the season.

Luckie, a biomedical sciences major from Prattville, is Auburn's first baseball Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Owning a 3.94 GPA, he earned a 4.0 this spring semester and has been on the College of Engineering's Dean's list four times. A two-time Auburn Top Tiger, he is a member of Phi Kappa Phi, Pi Gamma Tau, Delta Epsilon Iota, the National Scholars Honor Society, Golden Key, Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society and Phi Eta Sigma.

He is also the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) Treasurer for next year and was named the 2010 Auburn athletic department Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year nominee. In 13 starts this season, he has gone 6-3, which includes four wins in SEC play, taking the ball in series openers for the majority of the season. His finest outing came at Vanderbilt when he threw Auburn's first complete game in over two years in a 12-2 win.

Hubbard, from Homewood, was Auburn's representative on the 12-member 2010 SEC Baseball Community Service Team. He participated in the Pinch Hit for Haiti donation to the American Red Cross, read at Richland Elementary School during the Read Across America event and participated in the Strike Out Cancer 5k in each of the last two years, which raises money for the EAMC Cancer Center. He has visited children at the Birmingham Children's Hospital, attended Lee County Foster and Adoptive Families Association picnic for parents and children, participated in the Adopt-A-Family at Christmas, the Downtown Trick-or-Treat, the SAAC Toys for Tots Drive, the SAAC Student-Athlete Day and the SAAC We Can/SEC/Beat Bama food Drives.

Auburn opens up the SEC Tournament at 9:30am CT against Alabama on Wednesday, May 26.

INFORMATION SOURCE: Auburn University Athletics Department