Before we look at Mr. Neff, let’s list the top relievers since 2007:
2015- Patrick Wiseman, Harrisonburg and Georgia Tech
2014- Reece Karalus, Aldie and Santa Clara
2013- Adam Zipko, New Market and Millersville
2012- Shay Maltese, Haymarket and Cal State Northridge
2011- Patrick Christensen, Harrisonburg and LaSalle
2010- Zach Blatt, Luray and Auburn
2009- Brian Burgess, New Market and West Alabama
2008- Dane Gentzler, New Market and Maryland
2007- Jimmy Stanley, Waynesboro and Belmont
The newest addition to this list is Waynesboro’s Zach Neff, from Austin Peay!
The 6-foot-1 lefty went 4-1, 1.08, with 1 save, 10 hits, 3 walks, and 18 strikeouts in 16 2/3 innings pitched. He finished with a 0.778 WHIP, 1.6 BB/9, and 9.7 K/9. He finished 5th in ERA, 2nd in WHIP, 6th in BB/9, and 8th in K/9 out of all the relievers surveyed for this list. He was named 2nd team All-Valley by the media and coaches after the season.
For the Governors of Austin Peay in his freshman year in 2015, Zach went 0-0, 7.58 in 19 IP, with a 1.68 WHIP, 3.8 BB/9, and 10.4 K/9. He saw more action in 2016, going 1-7, 7.15, with a 1.66 WHIP, 2.5 BB/9, and 9.5 K/9 in 56 2/3 innings.
The business major is also getting his work done in the classroom. He was named to the Ohio Valley Conference Honor Roll in 2014-15, and has been named to the Austin Peay Dean’s List three times in his four semesters, along with the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll all four semesters.
Zach pitched in the California Collegiate League in the summer of 2015. Overall, he went 2-0, 4.23, with a 1.19 WHIP, 3.3 BB/9, and 8.8 K/9 in 27 2/3 innings pitched.
Congratulations on your superb summer, Zach!