Jake Benner – First County Bank Athlete of the Month
For the month of May, our First County Bank Athlete of the Month is 17 year old Jake Benner. Benner is easily a stand out amongst his peers, both in stature and what the young athlete has accomplished on and off the field. He earned this recognition long before the month of May but after a solid season for the Vikings the timing couldn’t have been better. We at B.V.S.A. were fortunate to see Benner develop over the past couple off-seasons, spending countless hours with B.V.T. Lab working hard with Renick and Mike. It was in the Lab where you could see the different motor in Benner and the effort he is willing to give to make even the most minor improvement day to day. Those “minor improvements” have been gaining forty pounds and getting not just stronger but faster and more agile.
This is apparent on the ball field if it be for practice or in the heat of a game. The infielder and pitcher is an exemplary leader no matter his performance and a player that his teammates can lean on throughout the season.
Benner is a player that can be relied upon on all sides of the ball; a big bat, with a solid glove and a strong arm on the mound. However it is his calm presence in any moment on the field at the plate, out in the field, or on the mound that raises his value to any of his coaches and teammates. This has been something that he has developed over a long period of time being a ball player. Benner has been playing since the age of 5 and fell in love with the game immediately. It was a perfect fit that was apparent and anybody in Stamford American could easily see as he played through Little League. Benner played for their 11U and 12U All-Star teams with early signs of being a dominant force. He then went on to play Stamford Legion for three years before finding his home with the Clubhouse in Fairfield. The now Junior Captain of the Westhill Vikings has also played basketball for the school in previous years as well but the diamond is where he excels the most.
This made him an easy choice for the Ruden Report to nominate him for Player of the Week, which Benner ultimately won. However, it is with all this behind him as a ball player that will help him excel at the next level in the coming years.
The recognition is not just for his on-field or in the weight room work ethic because it doesn’t stop there for him. As stated above he has a 4.0 GPA and 4.5 weighted GPA. Benner also finds time to be involved with the Academy of Finance at Westhill with future plans to pursue a degree in business at a high academic institution. You can also see him spending a lot of his free time volunteering if it be with Stamford American for their winter workouts, Stamford North in their Challenger League, at the St. Leo’s Church or at Kids Helping Kids. It is simply impressive what he has been able to accomplish and do not just for himself but so many others in such a short period of time.
We were happy and excited to be able to recognize Benner with this honor of FCB Athlete of the Month. Looking forward to seeing another year of hard work in BVT and what he will be able to achieve on the field but in his personal life as well.
Congratulations and keep striving to best yourself each and every day because few are as hardworking, dedicated, and determined as you are. It will be a fun ride the next few years to see it all unfold.
Offensive – .510 AVG, .576 OBP, 1.059 SLG, 25H, 8 2B, 1 #B, 5 HR, 18 R, 22 RBI, 5 SB,
Pitching – 17.1 IP, 2 W, 2L, 2Saves, 7ER, 2.82 ERA, 4 BB, 34K
- Academy of Finance Member – 2019 to present
- Extracurricular Activities:
- Westhill High School Varsity Baseball – 2020-present, named Captain Spring 2021
- The Clubhouse Baseball – Elite baseball club providing top notch baseball instruction to aid in player development and college recruitment – National Team (2019-2020), Prospect Team (2020-Present)
- Westhill High School Bee Club Member – Present (2021-2022) – Provide bees with shelter and harvest honey to be sold for funding school-based programs
- Westhill High School Kids Helping Kids Club Member – Present (2021-2022)
- Westhill High School Freshman Baseball Captain – 2019
- Stamford Recreational Basketball League – 2019 Season
- Westhill High School Freshman Basketball – 2018 Season – Coaches Award Recipient
- Stamford Legion Baseball – 2017-2019 – MVP Award Recipient 2018, Coaches Award Recipient 2017
- Stamford American Little League – 2009-2016
- Stamford Challenger Little League – Spring 2021 – Provide baseball instruction to players with special needs and assist with coaching games.
- Stamford American Little League – Volunteered at winter work out clinics to aid in the development of young baseball players – Winter 2020
- St. Leo’s Annual Church Fair – Summers 2016-2018 – Assisted with Fair set-up and breakdown; worked various game booths.
- St. Leo’s Annual Clothing Drive – 2017 – Organized clothes to be provided to the Covenant House for under privileged families.
- Clothes to Kids of Fairfield County – 2017-2018 – Organized and stocked the store floor to help ensure that the clothing needs of students visiting the store are met and to make the shop a welcoming place for families.
- Still Meadow Elementary School – Volunteered at family fundraising events – organized events and assisted children with various sport competitions – Spring 2017 & 2018
- The Food Bank of Lower Fairfield County – Volunteered throughout 2017 & 2018 – Sorted donated food items and stocked shelves
- Peak Performance Sports Camp CIT – Summer 2019 – Taught young children various sports such as soccer, basketball, and baseball
- Stamford American Little League Junior Umpire – 2018 & 2019 Seasons & hopefully 2021!
- The Ruden Report Player of the Week for outstanding baseball performance – April 2021
- Westhill Varsity Baseball Captain – Spring 2021 to present