ROCKFORD, Ill. - Rockford University pitcher Zack Jones (Rockford, Ill.) and second baseman Hunter Fiorito (Batavia, Ill.) continued to rake in the postseason awards on Thursday afternoon, as both were named All-Midwest Region by D3baseball.com. Zack Jones earned First Team All-Midwest Region honors, while Hunter Fiorito was selected Third Team All-Midwest Region. Jones becomes only the second RU baseball player to ever be named First Team All-Midwest Region by D3baseball.com (Jimmy Dercks, 2012). This also marks the first time since 2014 that Rockford has had multiple players earn all-region status in the same season.
Zack Jones' First Team All-Midwest Region award is just the latest honor for him in what was an outstanding junior season. Jones was previously voted the 2019 Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference Pitcher of the Year and First Team All-NACC. He was also named the NACC Pitcher of the Week early in the season, after allowing just four hits and striking out ten batters over eight shutout innings against Dominican. Statistically, Jones compiled one of the best seasons for an RU baseball player in recent memory. Jones allowed one earned run or less in five of his eight starts and struck out at least ten batters on five different occasions. The right-hander finished the regular season at or near the top of the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference in every pitching category. Jones led the NACC in earned run average (1.68), strikeouts (85), WHIP (0.87), hits allowed per nine innings (5.32) and was tied for the conference lead in complete games (4). He also finished fourth in strikeouts per nine innings (11.93), fifth in innings pitched (64.1) and tied for eighth in wins (5). Opponents hit just .167 against him, which is the lowest for any Regent pitcher with at least four starts since the creation of the NACC. Nationally, Jones ranks amongst the best in all of NCAA Division III in five different categories. As of today, Jones is eighth in the country in WHIP, tenth in hits allowed per nine innings, 20th in earned run average and 23rd in strikeouts and strikeouts per nine innings. Jones finished the season with perhaps his best start of the year, throwing a complete game, two-hit shutout and striking out a career-high 14 batters.
Hunter Fiorito was named Third Team All-Midwest Region to cap off an excellent senior season. Prior to his all-region selection, Fiorito also earned First Team All-NACC honors and was named the conference's position player of the week once during the season. Over that week, he helped lead the Regents to a 3-1 record, hitting .611, with a .667 on-base percentage and a 1.056 slugging percentage. Throughout the season, Fiorito did an excellent job at the top of the order, setting the table for the Rockford offense. He finished the regular season fifth in the NACC in batting average (.389) and tied for sixth in stolen bases (21). He also led the Regents in runs scored (32), hits (56), on-base percentage (.425) and slugging percentage (.500) and finished tied for the team lead in doubles (9) and triples (2). Fiorito proved to be a tremendous asset defensively as well, starting games at four different positions (second base, shortstop, third base and designated hitter).
The 2019 D3baseball.com All-American teams are currently scheduled to be released next Wednesday, May 29.