Senior shortstop Brandon Benson has been named Peach Belt Conference (PBC) player of the week for the second time this season. The PBC award is given to an offensive player that performs at the highest level of all 13 teams.
Benson said that he has grown as a player throughout his college career.
“I’ve definitely matured with my approach at the plate,” said Benson, who currently has more walks (21) than strikeouts (15).
Coming into the season, Benson had hit 21 home runs over three seasons with the Bobcats, but has hit 18 this season, which currently leads the PBC. Benson is also tied for first in the PBC in runs scored (58) and is second in RBIs (62).
Benson also said that he has matured on the mental side of the game.
“[Head coach Jason] Eller has really helped me with my mental game and slowing everything down, and being able to recognize things before they happen,” Benson said.
Senior Brady Walsh, a teammate of Benson’s the past four years, has seen Benson’s career firsthand.
“He’s an all-around great baseball player, he can hit a baseball, he can field a baseball and he can definitely throw a baseball,” Walsh said.
Walsh also said that Benson’s mentality is always positive.
“His attitude is great, he’s humble and he plays the game the right way,” Walsh said.
This season, the team has taken on a new mentality.
“When the stressful times come, we crack a joke to clear the air or Brady blows a bubble the size of Texas,” Benson said.
This program has been very successful over the past few years, always finishing middle or top half of the conference, but Benson said they are having a lot more fun this year.
“This year has been better than others, as a team we really came together, so that has been nice,” Benson said.
As to his future, Benson said that he doesn’t like to think too far in advance.
“My hopes for the future right now is to win a national championship,” Benson said. “I’m not too focused on after school, and whatever happens later on happens.”
The baseball team has two more weeks in the regular season and is tied for second in the PBC with a 14-7 conference record. As a team, head baseball coach Jason Eller said the team knows to take it one game at a time and focus on what is in front of them.
“We are trying not to get too far ahead of ourselves, we adjust our goals on a daily basis, but right now we are in a pivotal race and we are trying to make a run at the regular season title,” Eller said.