College baseball: NSU’s Davis, former Airline star, named to Southland Conference All-Academic first team

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Jason Pugh, Northwestern State Assistant Athletic Director for Media Relations

Northwestern State’s Peyton Davis, a former Airline star, has been named to the Southland Conference Baseball All-Academic first team.

A redshirt junior, Davis batted .273 with a team-leading three home runs and 14 RBIs, which tied for the team lead, in the Demons’ abbreviated 26-game season and was a magna cum laude graduate in business administration earlier this month.

Davis carried a 3.83 grade point average into his final semester of undergraduate study.

Davis’ teammate Kyle Swanson took the top honor of Student-Athlete of the Year.

A right-handed pitcher from Montgomery, Texas, Swanson carried a 4.0 GPA into his final semester of graduate school and completed his master’s degree in health and human performance with a concentration in health promotion in May. 

He has been accepted into the first class of Sam Houston State University’s College of Osteopathic Medicine, beginning in the fall of 2020.

Swanson went 0-1 with a 1.04 ERA and four saves. His eight career saves place him in a tie for seventh in school history. Before the season was shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic, he was on pace to threaten the school’s single-season mark of 10 saves, held by Chad Sheppard (twice) and Daniel Desclouds.

“Kyle has been the epitome of this award ever since he stepped on campus,” fourth-year head coach Bobby Barbier said. “The work ethic it takes to compete in the classroom as well as compete on the field is what makes Kyle receiving this award so special. I’m very proud of Kyle and all he has done for our school.”

Senior catcher Marshall Skinner rounds out the Demons’ selections, earning second-team honors.

Skinner hit safely in the first nine games of 2020, extending his hitting streak to a career-high 14 games dating to the 2019 season. A Cypress, Texas, product, Skinner batted .333 with a home run and 13 RBIs. A business administration major with a 3.38 grade point average, Skinner shared the team lead with 20 hits.

“Marshall and Peyton always have been great ambassadors for NSU,” Barbier said. “Their achievements and their inclusion on this team represent what we try to instill in all of our guys. I am very proud of their leadership in our program.”