Baseball Tapped as Preseason SAC Favorite


ROCK HILL, S.C. ( -- Catawba has been chosen first in the South Atlantic Conference’s baseball annual preseason poll.  It is the fifth consecutive year the Catawba Indians have received the top spot, as the head coaches gave Catawba eight first-place votes and a total of 107 points.  The Indians have won the last four league titles.

Five Indians were named to the preseason All-SAC teams.  Chance Bowden, Malachi Hanes, Russ Weiker and Bryan Blanton were named first team.  Kyle Smith was selected to the second team.

Bowden, a junior first baseman, set a school record with 31 doubles last year while hitting .324.  He connected on five home runs and drove in 47 runs.  Hanes, a senior designated hitter, will likely see most of his time in left field this season.  He batted .295 a year ago with 13 home runs and 50 RBI.

Weiker, a senior pitcher, compiled an 8-2 record on the mound to lead the team in wins.  He posted a 4.09 ERA with 45 strikeouts in 66 innings.  Blanton, a junior pitcher, saved nine games as the closer.  He went 3-1 with a 2.67 ERA, fanning 37 in 30 and a third innings.

Smith, a junior second baseman, was second on the team in hitting last year with a .352 average.  He collected five doubles and hit five home runs, driving in 28 runs and scoring 27.

The South Atlantic Conference baseball season gets underway on Wednesday Feb. 1.  Catawba opens that day at Pfeiffer with its home opener set for Feb. 18.  The 2017 Pilot Flying J South Atlantic Conference Baseball Championship is slated for April 27-May 1 at Smokies Stadium in Kodak, Tenn.

2017 SAC Preseason Coaches Poll
1. Catawba (8), 107
2. Tusculum (1), 90
3. Newberry (1), 86
4. Carson-Newman (1), 78
5t. Lincoln Memorial, 74
5t. Wingate, 74
7. Lenoir-Rhyne, 70
8. Mars Hill, 39
9. Anderson, 38
10. Coker, 37
11. Brevard, 19

2017 Preseason Baseball All-SAC
First Team
OF - Daymon Totherow, Newberry
OF - Ryan Addington, Carson-Newman
OF - Cade Snapp, Carson-Newman
1B - Chance Bowden, Catawba
2B - Zack Finchum, Tusculum
SS - Jimmy Rice, Carson-Newman
3B - Derek Olenchuck, Newberry
C - Jeff Sneed, Newberry
DH - Malachi Hanes, Catawba
SP - Zack Kelly, Newberry
SP - Russ Weiker, Catawba
SP - Ethan Elliot, Lincoln Memorial
RP - Bryan Blanton, Catawba

Second Team
OF -Mason Ewers, Lincoln Memorial
OF - Danton Hyman, Newberry
OF - Austin Turgeon, Wingate
1B - Nick Lacina, Tusculum
2B - Kyle Smith, Catawba
SS - Bryson Conner, Coker
3B - Eric Kalman, Lincoln Memorial
C - Gooch Greer, Carson-Newman
DH - Bradley Brown, Wingate
SP - Brandon Dona hue, Wingate
SP - Christian Rasssch,
SP - Zach Slagle, Tusculum
RP - Tad Ratliff, Lenoir-Rhyne

Today's Events

No events scheduled until September 3


«June 2020»

Mouse over the red calendar dates to display events on those days. Click to open the full-size calendar.


Baseball Team Photo