July 7, 2014
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern first baseman Matt Hopfner was named to the 2014 freshman All-America First Team by Perfect Game, the publication announced on Monday, July 7.
Hopfner led the Wildcats in numerous statistical categories during his inaugural campaign in Evanston. The Edina, Minn., native led the team in batting average (.335), hits (66), runs (30) and starts (50), while ranking second in RBI (25), total bases (74) and on-base percentage (.376). Hopfner ranked ninth among all players in batting average in the Big Ten and 11th in hits. On May 20, Hopfner was named a unanimous selection to the All-Big Ten Freshman Team at first base.
The freshman became the first newcomer to lead the Wildcats in hits since Trevor Stevens in 2009 and he had the most hits overall since Chris Lashmet tallied 67 in 2011. He posted two separate 10-game hitting streaks during the course of the season and reached base safely in the first 17 games of his career. Hopfner also reached base safely in the final 15 Big Ten games of the season. He led Northwestern with 21 multi-hit games and produced a career-high three hits six times, including in the season finale at Ohio State on May 17.
Hopfner, who started 49 consecutive games to end the season, was named Big Ten Freshman of the Week on Feb. 24 following a strong performance at the Snowbird Classic in Port Charlotte, Fla. He batted .500 that weekend with nine hits to help the Wildcats to wins over Nebraska-Omaha and Mississippi Valley State.
In addition to playing first base, and in the outfield, Hopfner made seven appearances, including one start, on the mound for the 'Cats in 2014. He is the first member of the Wildcats to earn Freshman All-America honors since 2008 when left-handed pitcher Eric Jokisch
received the honor from Collegiate Baseball
. Hopfner was the only Big Ten player chosen on the First Team, while the conference placed three representatives on the Second Team. Maryland, which officially joined the Big Ten on July 1, had two players recognized, one on the First Team and another on the Second Team.
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