Owls Next Face LSU In Late Sunday Night Contest
Owls Return To Baton Rouge For NCAA Regional
Owls Rally Past No. 11 Southern Miss 5-4 In Championship Final, Punch Ticket To NCAA Tournament
Rice Makes C-USA Tournament's Championship Final With 13-2 Victory Over FAU
2017: Helped the Owls with versatility, playing in a total of 47 of the team's 64 games... Made 24 appearances on the mound with four starting assignments... Started at third base 12 times, appeared 11 times as a defensive sub in the infield and entered four games as a pinch-runner... Playing resume may look like it adds-up to 51 appearances, but there were four occasions where he pitched and then moved over to play third base in the same game... Showcasing an ability to play different roles was not some casual baseball experiment, but was needed in three Conference USA league games and one time in the NCAA Tournament... Finished fourth on the team in pitching appearances and strikeouts (50), and was fifth on the staff in total innings (55.2)... Averaged 8.1 strikeouts per 9.0 innings, the third-highest mark on the team (min. 20.0 innings)... Four starts on the mound were all big games -- an elimination game in the NCAA Tournament against Southeastern Louisiana, vs. No. 14 ranked crosstown rival Houston, a C-USA clash against Louisiana Tech, and a midweek game against a talented Sam Houston State squad that went on to reach the NCAA Super Regional round... The Owls won three of the four games where he started on the mound... Posted a career-high six strikeouts in 4.2 innings of two-hit relief against No. 11 ranked Stanford... Struck out six in just 3.2 frames against C-USA foe UTSA to earn his first career save... Fanned five in 4.0 innings to earn a save in the C-USA series-opener at UAB... Averaged just under 2.0 innings for 20 relief appearances... Was sensational in only his second career start, firing 5.0 shutout innings at Houston without allowing a hit nor walk... Had a solid start in final outing, working a career-long 5.1 innings in the NCAA Tournament start vs. SELA... Did some of his best pitching away from Reckling Park, where opposing hitters batted a composite .254... Pitching was only part of the story, as he was the starting third baseman on Opening Day against nationally-ranked Texas on the road... Best game was collecting a season-high two hits and driving in a run against west coast power Pepperdine... Started at third base (in place of eventual MLB draft pick Dane Myers) a total of 12 times... There were in fact two occasions when he was brought in to pitch in relief of eventual MLB draft pick Glenn Otto, and then relieved Dane Myers at third base in the same game (April 16 vs. Southern Miss and May 20 at UAB... Was called to pinch-run for DH Andrew Dunlap at first base with no outs and the game tied 4-4 in the bottom of the ninth inning in the Championship Final of the C-USA Tournament - he advanced on a sacrifice bunt and scored the game-winning run from second base on a walk-off hit by Ryan Chandler... Two weeks earlier he pinch-ran for Dominic DiCaprio at first base in the top of the eighth inning while trailing at Charlotte 4-3, and went on to score the game-tying run before the Owls went on to win 6-4... Played in the New England Collegiate League (Valley) over the summer.
2016: Contributed with a wide range of versatility in first Division I season... Played in a total of 24 games as a true freshman and led the team with 21 games as a substitute... Often asked to change roles within a game, such as going from pitcher to third base (which he did three different times)... Taking into account the various in-game switches his final appearance breakdowns were: infielder (ten times), pitcher (seven times), designated hitter (five times), outfielder (three times) and pinch-runner (five times) -- which adds-up to more than 24 games played... Worked his way into three starts as a rookie, including twice as the designated hitter and once at second base... Started at second base at longtime foe Sam Houston State and went 1-for-4 with an RBI, as well as make a career-high six defensive put outs... Came off the bench to drive in runs in wins against Texas State and UCF... Pinch-ran against No. 16 ranked East Carolina, then remained in the game to collect a base hit in his only at bat... Scored runs against East Carolina and Old Dominion as a pinch-runner... Very first Rice appearance was as a relief pitcher on opening day against an Arizona squad that went on reach the championship final of the College World Series... Fired 1.1 scoreless innings against Arizona without allowing any hits and striking out one... Earned first career win on the mound in a career-long 1.2 innings against crosstown rival Houston, a game where he also played third base... All but one-third of his 6.0 innings were against non-conference teams... Started at third base in the November exhibition against Cuban League team Artemisa, and threw out both of the first two batters of the game in the bottom of the first inning -- setting the tone for a solid defensive outing by the entire team in a 4-0 shutout victory... Went on to record another defensive assist at third to get the final out in the bottom of the eighth inning... Played in the California Collegiate League (Neptune Beach) over the summer.
High School -- A 2015 graduate of Klein High School in Klein, Texas... Three-year varsity baseball starter for head coach Barry Smith... Earned back-to-back all-District 15-6A honors as a pitcher in 2014-2015, posting a combined eight wins, five saves, a 1.16 ERA and 102 strikeouts in 85.0 innings... Helped lead the team to an 18-10 record in 2015... The Bearkats won district crowns in senior and sophomore seasons, where he hit .326 as the starting left fielder... Versatile student-athlete who also lettered three years in football and was a second-team all-district selection at safety... Maintained a 4.4 grade point average.
Personal -- Full name: Kendal Baylor Jefferies...Parents: David and Diane Jefferies of Spring, Texas (two brothers). Older brother, Reese, played one year at San Jacinto College. College: Baker