PR baseball players earn Highland honors

LEROY — Pine River proved to be among the top teams in the Highland Conference again this season with the likes of Kyle Brock, Anthony Hilkowski, Devin Ruppert and Nick Warner shining again on the baseball diamond.

Those four were named recently to the all-Highland first team for baseball. Brett Hastings earned honorable mention honors.

Brock, a senior infielder, batted .284 with two doubles and 12 RBIs. He was 2-0 as a pitcher.

“He did a nice job at third base for us,” said Pine River coach Sean Ruppert. “Like most of our batters, he was up and down at bat.”

Hilkowski, a senior outfielder, batted .313 with five doubles, one triple and 16 RBIs.

“He was my second highest hitter,” Ruppert said. “He put in a lot of hard work.”

Devin Ruppert was a sophomore catcher who batted .284 with three doubles and 16 RBIs. He had a fielding percentage of .955.

“He caught for us and had just two passed balls all year,” said his dad, Shawn Ruppert.

Warner, a senior pitcher, was 8-2 with a 1.62 ERA and 97 strikeouts. He led the team with a .337 batting average, seven doubles and two home runs, plus 21 RBIs.

“He was our No. 2 hitter most of the year,” said Shawn Ruppert. “He struggled at bat early in the season but picked it up the middle of the year.”

Warner is a four-year varsity player.

Hastings was an outfielder.

“He made it because of his defense,” Shawn Ruppert said. “He was the best defensive center fielder I saw all year. He had five double plays from the outfield.”