Gigliotti named ASUN Defensive Player of the Year, six Bisons earn league honors
Tuesday, May 23, 2017
By Kirk Downs
Gigliotti named ASUN Defensive Player of the Year, six Bisons earn league honors

DELAND, Fla. - The Lipscomb Bisons had six players honored by the ASUN Conference on Tuesday as the league announced its yearly baseball awards and All-ASUN Teams, recognizing standout performances both on and off the field.
 
Michael Gigliotti led the Bison contingent, earning ASUN Co-Defensive Player of the Year, and Second Team All-Conference honors. Zeke Dodson, Hunter Hanks, Jeffrey Passantino and Jake Perry joined Gigliotti on the second team, while Lee Solomon rounded out the awards with a spot on the ASUN All-Academic squad.

Gigliotti becomes just the second Bison in program history, joining Grant Massey in 2015, to be honored as the league’s top defensive player. He also earned a spot on the second team for the third consecutive season.

The junior outfielder is batting .279 (53-for-190) with two home runs, one triple, 14 doubles and 12 RBI. He ranks fourth in the nation with 31 stolen bases, seventh with 50 walks and 23rd with 58 runs scored.

Gigliotti enters the tournament riding a season-best 29-game on-base streak. He also posted a .994 fielding percentage after committing just one error in 163 total chances.

Dodson, a native of Tift, Georgia, is second on the team with a .298 batting clip (59-of-198) after recording a hit in his previous seven starts and reaching first safely in 12 straight.

The sophomore third baseman has 11 doubles, two triples, three home runs and 35 RBI, to go along with 39 runs and 33 walks.

Against conference foes, Dodson is batting a team high .333 and stands second with 19 RBI and a .433 on-base percentage.

Hanks has been the breakout star for Lipscomb in 2017. After batting .105 in mid-March, the senior made the move from shortstop to second base and immediately became the Bisons best power threat.

He finished the year raking .275 (42-of-153) with a team high eight home runs and 39 RBI, the second highest total on the team. He also scored 26 runs, drew 17 walks and stole 10 bases.

In ASUN play the Jacksonville, Florida native batted .289 with six home runs and 25 RBI – both team highs.

Passantino was the most consistent hurler of the year for Lipscomb, proving as much after being promoted to the Friday night role midway through the conference season.

The junior righty posted a 4-2 ledger with a 2.93 ERA and a .246 batting average against, all ranked second on the team.

In 14 starts he hurled 92.0 innings with a mind-boggling 93 strikeouts to just nine walks, leading to his 10.33 strikeout to walk ratio which ranks third in the nation.
His 0.88 walks per nine innings is the fourth best number across Division I.

The Fort Myers, Florida native struck out a career high 10 batters on three separate occasions, including back-to-back outings against Illinois State and Evansville.

He was named the ASUN Pitcher of the Week after shutting out ISU over seven innings on March 18, his third career weekly honor.

A transfer out of Maple Woods Community College, Perry was inserted into the Bisons lineup on day one because of his powerful bat.

The junior raked .283 (51-of-180) with 11 doubles, 25 runs and 21 walks. He finished second on the team with seven homers and third with 37 RBI.

He posted a career best 4-hit, 4-RBI day on April 22 in a win over NJIT.

Perry was tied for the team lead with 15 multiple-hit games, leading to a .472 slugging percentage which was second best on the Bisons.

Solomon was the only unanimous selection on the All-Academic Team, earning the honor for the second consecutive season.

The junior was the utility man for Lipscomb in 2017, where after starting 17 games at second base, he also split time with 15 starts in left field and 20 in right.

Solomon only batted .247 (49-of-198) at the dish, but made his presence felt in a number of other categories.

He finished 19th in the country with 23 stolen bases, averaging 0.43 per game. He totaled a team-high 16 doubles, two triple, one home run and 27 RBI. The Columbus, Ohio native was fifth in the ASUN with 41 runs scored and ranked just outside the top 10 in walks (29). His nine hit by pitches were the second most, only behind Gigliotti’s 10.

Solomon carried a 3.82 GPA while majoring in Law, Justice and Society. He was named the ASUN’s Baseball Scholar Athlete of the Year in 2016.

Lipscomb begins tournament play Wednesday at 10 a.m. when it faces the No. 1 seeded Jacksonville Dolphins in the opening game at Melching Field.