GAINESVILLE -- Florida freshman first baseman Preston Tucker was named Freshman Hitter of the Year on Tuesday by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association.
Tucker led the Gators in batting average (.364), RBI (85) and home runs (15) -- a remarkable accomplishment considering he was not named a full-time starter by UF head coach Kevin O'Sullivan until the 23rd game of the season. Tucker also led the Gators in slugging percentage (.628), multiple-hit games (27) and multiple-RBI games (23) and total bases (152). He was second on the team in hits (88) and doubles (13).
A list of Tucker's awards and honors this season: Southeastern Conference Co-Freshman of the Year, Freshman All-American by Collegiate Baseball and the NCBWA, Most Outstanding Player of the NCAA Gainesville regional, All-SEC Tournament Team and the SEC's All-Freshman Team.
Tucker went 9-for-13 (.692) during the NCAA's Gainesville Regional. He had four hits in UF's regional championship game against Miami. In Florida's five NCAA games, Tucker batted .650 and hit .471 (4-for-7) in UF's super regional against Southern Miss.