All- SEC team

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  1. lsucurlyq

    lsucurlyq Freshman

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    Mestepey Named to All-SEC First Team
    05/21/02


    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- LSU sophomore left-handed pitcher Lane Mestepey became just the second Fighting Tiger to be named to the All-SEC first team in both his freshman and sophomore years, while junior third baseman Wally Pontiff and junior right-handed pitcher Jake Tompkins earned second team accolades, as the SEC announced its postseason honors late Monday.

    Mestepey, a Zachary native, went 10-3 with a 2.76 ERA in the regular season, allowing just 16 walks in 117.0 innings, and is currently third in the SEC in ERA while leading the conference with six complete games.

    He threw a five-hit shutout last Saturday against Alabama, and also blanked Arkansas on four hits.

    Mestepey was the SEC and National Freshman of the Year when he was 11-3 with a 3.75 ERA, leading the conference in both wins and ERA.

    The only other Tiger to earn first team All-SEC honors as a freshman and sophomore is Todd Walker, LSU's second baseman from 1992-94 who was first team All-SEC in all three of his years in Baton Rouge.

    Pontiff, a first team All-SEC selection in 2001 and a candidate for Academic All-America honors this year, batted .346 during the regular season and currently leads the Tigers in doubles (20), on-base percentage (.453) and walks (42). Pontiff ranks 10th on the LSU career charts in batting average (.347) and hits (247), and is tied for seventh in career doubles (49). The Tigers' team captain had hitting streaks of 19 and 12 games during the season.

    Tompkins, a California native who transferred to LSU from Sacramento City College, began the season in the starting rotation but made a successful conversion to the bullpen to spearhead the Tigers' 22-5 run in the second half of the season. Tompkins is 5-0 with a 3.04 ERA and four saves, and is 3-0 with a 2.77 ERA in 13 appearances out of the bullpen. He struck out a career high 10 in just 4 2/3 innings in an April 30 victory at New Orleans, and allowed just one of 14 inherited runners to score out of the bullpen.

    SEC overall champion South Carolina led the way with four first team selection, including Player of the Year Yaron Peters, a first baseman who hit .381 with 21 home runs and 79 RBI. West division champion Alabama had three first teamers, while Florida had two selections. The 12 league coaches vote on the teams, and coaches are not allowed to vote on their own players.

    Ole Miss' lone first team selection, outfielder Seth Smith, was named the Freshman of the Year. Alabama coach Jim Wells was named Coach of the Year for guiding the Crimson Tide to a 44-12 record, the best regular season mark in school history.

    LSU (38-17), the fourth seed in the SEC Tournament, opens postseason play Wednesday at 5 p.m. vs. fifth-seeded Auburn (34-22) at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium.
     

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