Topsail’s Berne earns NJCAA Region 10 Player of the Year

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A pair of local ballplayers competing within the junior college ranks were recognized this weekend as they wrapped up play at the Region 10 Baseball Tournament in Kinston.

Mason Berne (Topsail) was named Region 10 Player of the Year, while Kevon Perkins (North Brunswick) was selected with second team honors.

Mason Berne. Photo courtesy- Jeff Berne.
Mason Berne. Photo courtesy- Jeff Berne.

Berne led the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) for much of the spring in home runs as one of the nation’s most feared right-handed power hitters. He belted 22 round trippers this season, while maintaining a .388 average to go along with 16 doubles and 62 RBI’s.

The first baseman, who helped Topsail to a 3A State Championship in 2014, went 3-for-4 with a home run, double and 2 RBI’s for the Pioneers on Sunday in an 11-6 win over Florence Darlington Tech.

Perkins rebounded from a slow start to the spring as the table setter atop the Pioneers lineup. He finished with a .327 batting average, 10 doubles, seven home runs, 53 runs scored and 22 stolen bases.

Berne and Perkins are sophomores at Spartanburg Methodist and both have committed to continue their baseball careers at UNCW this fall.

Berne may forgo his return to Wilmington if there’s an offer on the table as a pick in this year’s Major League Baseball Draft, which is set for early June. As a North Brunswick grad, Perkins has a chance at filling the shoes of fellow Scorpion alum Steven Linkous, who is wrapping up a stellar senior campaign as the UNCW lead-off hitter.