USF infielder John Montes named AAC Player of the Week

Montes joined the Bulls last year following a two-year stint at UCF. ORACLE PHOTO/CARLEIGH BENEDICT

Senior infielder John Montes turned a killer season of play into league recognition on Monday.

The 22-year-old was named the AAC Baseball Player of the Week following a strong showing during the Bulls’ series win against Memphis last weekend.

Related: USF baseball is ‘out for redemption’ this year, head coach says – The Oracle 

The matchup was USF’s first foray into conference play this season. USF bounced back to win the final two matches of the three-game series.

Montes contributed eight RBIs and two home runs over the weekend, including an eighth-inning grand slam that led the Bulls to a 9-5 victory on Saturday.

Montes isn’t a one-weekend wonder, though.

The Puerto Rican native leads USF this season in batting average with .405, which ranks third in the AAC. Montes is also ahead of his teammates in slugging, with a .619 average, and doubles with nine.

Montes hasn’t only found glory as a Bull – he played for UCF for the 2021 and 2022 seasons. During his first year with the Knights, Montes started in 44 games and scored 18 runs with 29 RBI. 

The next season, however, he started four games and produced one RBI for UCF.

Montes entered the transfer portal following his 2022 season, and his hopes of joining USF became a reality.

“It felt like the day I moved from Puerto Rico to the United States,” he told The Oracle last year. “A lot of new faces, but they were here and they received me with open hands.”

Related: John Montes: Playing both sides of a rivalry 

His success in the sport doesn’t come from nowhere. Montes’ father was a baseball player for Rider University in New Jersey, while his mother played college softball in Puerto Rico.

The Bulls begin a five-game road stretch starting on Tuesday against Bethune Cookman. They will return home to face Wichita State on April 5.