Ferguson, Lebanon’s Stewart earn Freshmen All-American honors for Bears


TUCSON, Ariz. – Garrett Ferguson and Zack Stewart were named Freshmen All-Americans by Collegiate Baseball on Wednesday, becoming the 44th and 45th All-Americans in Bears baseball history.

The only freshman to earn all-Missouri Valley Conference First Team honors this season, Ferguson is one of eight relief pitchers on the All-America squad. The Blue Springs, Mo., native’s 1.88 ERA leads all MVC pitchers with at least 25 innings, and he went 3-0 with five saves in conference games, allowing a run on eight hits in 16 innings for a 0.56 ERA.

Ferguson ranks fifth nationally among freshmen with six saves on the full season and finished the year with eight consecutive scoreless outings spanning 10.1 innings. He allowed no runs in 16 of 21 appearances on the season and gave up multiple runs just once, fanning 27 batters in 28.2 innings with 15 hits for a .158 opponent batting average.

Stewart is the MVC Freshman of the Year, the 10th in MSU history, and will finish the 2023 season second in the league with 61 runs batted in. His RBI total ranks second behind only Ryan Howard (66 in 1999) among true freshmen at Missouri State.

One of 14 outfielders on the squad, the Lebanon, Mo., product batted .302 with 12 homers, 18 doubles (third in the MVC), and two triples, and his 32 total extra-base hits trail only Howard (33) and Jason Hart (36 in 1996) among MSU freshmen. He collected 15 multi-RBI games and ranks eighth nationally in doubles and 10th in RBI among freshmen.

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