Golden Eagle baseball adds three players to 2017 class
HATTIESBURG — The Southern Miss baseball program recently added a trio to its 2017 roster that not only should add quality to the Golden Eagles’ pitching staff but provide a potential backstop as well.
Southern Miss coach Scott Berry announced the additions of left-handed pitchers Trey Davidson and Jake Davis and catcher/right-handed pitcher Jake Viaene.
The 6-foot-4, 185-pound Davidson, a native of Bakersfield, Calif., turned in consecutive of seasons with a sub-2.00 earned run average at Wabash Valley College in Mount Carmel, Ill.
As a sophomore this spring, Davidson appeared in 15 games out of the bullpen, going 3-1 with an 1.91 ERA. In 33 innings, Davidson allowed seven earned runs on 17 hits, striking out 26 while walking 14.
As a freshman in 2015, Davidson appeared in 11 games for Wabash, including his lone start in collegiate baseball. He posted a 4-2 mark and a 1.65 ERA. In 49 innings, he allowed nine earned run on 32 hits, striking out 34 while walking 10.
Davidson sported a 15-10 career record with four saves and a 2.97 ERA in four seasons at Garces Memorial High School, earning honorable mention All-Southeast Yosemite League notice as a junior and senior.
Over his career, Davidson appeared in 52 games, striking out 170 batters and walking 85 in 167 innings.
The 5-11, 195-pound Davis, a native of Cypress, Texas, spent the past two seasons at Howard College in Big Springs, Texas.
This spring, he averaged nearly 10.4 strikeouts per nine innings coming out of the pen for the Hawks. Davis appeared in 21 games, tossing a complete game in one of his two collegiate starts. He finished 5-2 with two saves and a 4.34 ERA, striking out 55 while walking 24 in 47 2/3 innings.
As a freshman in 2015, Davis posted a 4.50 ERA, allowing eight earned runs over 16 innings in 10 appearances. He struck out six, walking 14.
Davis, a second-team 17-5A All-District selection in 2013 as a senior at Cypress Fair High School, spent this summer with the Danville (Ill.) Dans of the Prospect League.
In his first 16 appearances with the Dans, Davis was 2-2 with a save and 2.38 ERA. He allowed 38 hits in 34 innings, striking out 38 while walking 18.
The 6-5, 225-pound Viaene, had signed with Texas-Rio Grande Valley after two standout seasons at Black Hawk College-Moline, but sat out the 2016 season after Tommy John surgery.
Viaene, a Moline, Ill., native, was a two-time All-Arrowhead Conference selection as a catcher/first baseman at Black Hawk, earning All-Region/Division II honors at catcher as a sophomore.
In 2015, Viaene hit .349 in 56 games (51 of 146), with 13 doubles and a triple. He scored 36 runs, drove in 24 and stole six bases. Defensively, he threw out 21 would-be base stealers and committed just two errors.
As a freshman, Viaene hit .330 (33 of 100) in 42 games, with seven doubles and four home runs. He scored 32 runs, drove in 27 and drew 34 walks. He committed just two errors in 2014 as well.
Viaene helped Moline High School reach the 2013 Champaign Super Sectional for the first time since 2005, hitting .462 with eight RBIs in a Class 4A playoff run that saw his team win sectional and regional crowns.
The previous summer, Viaene had been a part of the Post 246 team that reached the 2012 American Legion World Series in North Carolina.
Viaene, whose fastball has been clocked in the high 80s-low 90s, also is expected to get a look as a right-handed pitcher.
Davidson, Davis and Viaene will join a 2016-17 class that already boasted 15 players.