PORTLAND, Ore. – After being named the Great Northwest Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Week on Monday, Montana State University Billings senior Jarrod Molnaa has been named the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association West Region Pitcher of the Week announced by the organization on Tuesday.
The senior right-hander authored a three-hit, nine-inning shutout of Saint Martin’s University on Sunday, helping the Yellowjackets win 6-0 and climb to the top of the GNAC standings with a four-game sweep of the Saints. “It’s an unbelievable honor for Jarrod to be recognized in our region,” said MSUB head coach Aaron Sutton. “He gives us a chance to go out and compete every time he gets the ball. He is the ultimate team guy, who we know feels humbled to represent our pitching staff this weekend.”
It is the second straight week a Yellowjacket has claimed the NCBWA Pitcher of the Week award, as freshman Brooks Zimmer won it last week after collecting three saves in MSUB’s series win over Central Washington. It is the third overall regional player of the week honor this year, as Daniel Cipriano was the NCBWA West Region Player of the Week on March 5.
Molnaa struck out nine batters to match his season high, while walking only one and scattering three hits over his nine full innings of work. It was the first nine-inning shutout by any pitcher in the GNAC this season, and the fifth overall shutout. Cooper Webster and Ben Johnson of Northwest Nazarene, and Gabe Benavides and Austin Crowson of Western Oregon have each also thrown a shutout in 2019, but all four of those efforts were in seven-inning ballgames.
It was the first shutout by an MSUB pitcher since Tanner Johnson logged a three-hit, nine-inning shutout on April 25, 2015 against Northwest Nazarene University. Overall it was the 18th shutout in program history dating back to 2006.
MSUB (11-13, 11-5 GNAC) takes a seven-game winning streak into this weekend’s four-game series at Concordia University in Portland, Oregon. Doubleheaders are scheduled to start at noon Pacific time on Friday and Saturday, and live video with play-by-play commentary and live statistics will be available for all four games through the MSUB Stretch Internet portal online here.