April 22, 2015
Albertson And Brooks Headline SAC Baseball Post-Season Awards
ROCK HILL, S.C. (TheSac.com) -- Catawba catcher Will Albertson was voted the 2015 South Atlantic Conference Baseball Player of the Year, while teammate Craig Brooks was named the Pitcher of the Year. In addition, Wingate’s Bradley Brown was voted the League’s Freshman of the Year and Newberry mentor Russell Triplett was tabbed the Coach of the Year. It was announced by the league on Wednesday.
Catawba placed four players on the all-conference first team, headed by Albertson and Brooks. Outfielder Blake Houston and designated hitter T.J. Wharton also earned first team honors. Shaefer Shepard was a second team starting pitcher selection and Ryan McClintock grabbed honorable mention honors as a relief pitcher.
Albertson, a junior from Sophia, N.C., finished the 2015 baseball regular season ranked No. 1 in the nation with 86 hits. He is currently No. 2 in the country with a .494 average at the plate, to go along with 23 home runs to rank No. 3 in Division II. His 0.51 homers per contest is good for No. 4 in the country, while he is also ranked No. 4 with and on-base percentage of .560. Albertson has pounded out 16 doubles on the year and a triple to close out the regular season at No. 4 in D-II in the nation with a slugging percentage of .994. Albertson was named the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association National Hitter of the Week on two occasions and was named the NCBWA Region Hitter of the Week three times.
Brooks, a senior from Monroe, N.C., repeats as the SAC Pitcher of the Year. He has struck out a nation’s-best 121 hitters during the 2015 season to date and ranks No. 3 in the country with 14.08 strikeouts per nine innings. He has also posted eight wins on the year to rank No. 8 in Division II. Brooks threw 77.1 innings in 2015 and held his opponents to just a .142 average at the plate. He surrendered just 14 earned runs during the year to rank No. 22 in Division II with an ERA of 1.63.
Brown, a designated hitter from Rockingham, N.C., closed out the regular season ranked No. 24 in the nation with 17 doubles and No. 25 in the country with 51 RBI. Brown also posted 55 hits and a .340 average at the plate to finish the regular season with an on-base percentage of .427. He belted eight homers on the year and a slugged .593 for the Bulldogs. Brown was named the NCBWA Regional Co-Hitter of the Week on Feb. 25.
Triplett earns his first SAC Coach of the Year honor after leading the Wolves to their first top-three finish in the South Atlantic Conference since joining the League in 1996. Newberry is coming off back-to-back 30-win seasons for first time in Newberry recorded history (1981) and Newberry’s 33 wins is also the most in that time period.
Albertson was named the League’s first-team catcher. Albert Baur of Newberry earned first-team honors at first base, while Wingate’s Shane Billings was voted the first-team second baseman. Ryan Perkins from Lenoir-Rhyne garnered first-team shortstop honors and Nick Morabito from Lincoln Memorial rounded out the list of first-team infielders at third base.
In the outfield, Thomas Spitz from Wingate, Brandan Sheridan of Newberry and Catawba’s Houston made up the list of first-team honorees. Wharton of Catawba was voted the first-team designated hitter. The first-team relief pitcher was Devan Watts of Tusculum, while Brooks, Placido Torres of Tusculum and Wesley Camp were tabbed the first-team starters.
Houston stands fourth in the SAC in batting average entering the league tournament, hitting an even .400. He ranks second in the nation with 66 runs scored and leads the country with 43 walks. Houston leads Catawba with 17 doubles and has added seven home runs and a triple while driving in 36 runs. He has swiped a team-high 14 bases.
Wharton is the No. 3 hitter in the SAC with a .404 average and is second on the team in hits (74), home runs (10) and RBI (50). He has doubled 14 times and also has a triple with 42 runs scored. Wharton is fourth in the SAC with a .656 slugging percentage and is 25th in NCAA II total RBI.
Shepard went 8-3 during the regular season and posted a 4.13 ERA. Over his 69 and two-thirds innings he surrendered 76 hits with 24 walks and 60 strikeouts. He shared the team and league lead with those eight wins.
McClintock was second in the SAC with six saves. He recorded a 3-0 record and a 2.25 ERA over 24 innings.
The South Atlantic Conference Gold Glove honorees were Albertson at catcher, Brooks at pitcher, first baseman Baur, second baseman Kyle Bailey of Anderson, Newberry’s Jacob Bass at third base, Evan Rogers of Mars Hill at shortstop, Rayshelon Carolina from Mars Hill in left field, Mars Hill’s Tommy Scala in centerfield and Alex Kirby of Newberry at right field.
2015 SAC Baseball All-Conference Teams
All-SAC First Team
C- Will Albertson, Catawba
1B – Albert Baur, Newberry
2B – Shane Billings, Wingate
SS – Ryan Perkins, Lenoir-Rhyne
3B – Nick Morabito, Lincoln Memorial
OF – Thomas Spitz, Wingate
OF – Blake Houston, Catawba
OF – Brandan Sheridan, Newberry
DH – T.J. Wharton, Catawba
RP – Devan Watts, Tusculum
P – Craig Brooks, Catawba
P – Placido Torres, Tusculum
P – Wesley Camp, Newberry
All-SAC Second Team
C- Kyle Floyd, Lincoln Memorial
1B – Steven Cooper, Anderson
2B – Brantley Rumford, Lenoir-Rhyne
SS – Evan Rogers, Mars Hill
3B – Matthew De la rosa, Lenoir-Rhyne
OF – JoJo Bradley, Newberry
OF – Rayshelon Carolina, Mars Hill
OF – Bo Ausmus, Carson-Newman
DH – Bradley Brown, Wingate
RP – Daniel Nations, Newberry
P – Shafer Shepard, Catawba
P –Vince Apicella, Carson-Newman
P- Jamie Miller, Carson-Newman
C- L.J. Newman, Anderson
1B – Evan Jurjevic, Carson-Newman
2B – Jeovanny Tolentino, Tusculum
SS – Chris Waylock, Tusculum
3B – Jacob Bass, Newberry
OF – Andrew Bowerman, Tusculum
OF – Colby Barnette, Wingate
OF – Sammy Song, Coker
DH – Nolan Schrenker, Newberry
RP – Ryan McClintock, Catawba
P – Cole Cromer, Newberry
P – Hunter Donaldson, Brevard College
P – Jonathan Rosenberger, Newberry
C – Will Albertson, Catawba
P – Craig Brooks, Catawba
1B – Albert Baur, Newberry
2B – Kyle Bailey, Anderson
3B – Jacob Bass, Newberry
SS - Evan Rogers, Mars Hill
LF – Rayshelon Carolina, Mars Hill
CF – Tommy Scala, Mars Hill
RF – Alex Kirby, Newberry
Player of the Year: Will Albertson, Catawba
Pitcher of the Year: Craig Brooks, Catawba
Freshman of the Year: Bradley Brown, Wingate
Coach of the Year: Russell Triplett, Newberry
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Soccer (W) vs. CHOWAN 2 p.m.
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