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The hits – and the awards – just keep on coming for NM State baseball's Zerek Saenz.
Shortly after being named the Western Athletic Conference's Hitter of the Week Monday morning, the sophomore outfielder from Las Cruces, N.M., learned he was one of the seven NCAA Division I baseball players from around the nation who were selected as the Collegiate Baseball Newspaper's National Players of the Week.
Saenz is the first Aggie to collect Collegiate Baseball Newspaper National Player of the Week honors since Nick Gonzales did so on Feb. 17, 2020.
Ripping the cover off the ball, Saenz smoked opposing pitching during the Aggies' 5-0 run over the last week, slashing .739/.739/1.043 during that same stretch. The outfielder out of Las Cruces, N.M., generated 17 hits in his 23 at-bats and five of those (three doubles, two triples) were of the extra-base variety.
Saenz drove in 10 of the Aggies' 48 runs last week, scored another 10 and registered at least two hits in each of the team's five games. His best day at the dish last week came during game two of the Aggies' Saturday doubleheader with Northern Colorado where he went 5-for-6 with an RBI and four runs scored. In NM State's series-opening win over the Bears Friday night, Saenz went 4-for-5, drove in four runs and scored three on his own.
As of this writing, Saenz leads the WAC and ranks third nationally in batting average (.554) while also sitting ninth in the land in total hits (31) and 11th in the nation in terms of on-base percentage (.600).
Saenz and the rest of the Aggies (9-7, 7-1 WAC) have won their last five games and eight of their last nine to sit a half-game back of the top spot in the WAC standings. NM State sets out on a 12-game road trip this week when it heads to Bellevue, Wash., for a four-game WAC series with Seattle U. Game one is set to begin at 5 p.m. Friday evening from Bannerwood Park.