CAA BASEBALL PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Josh Wright, Old Dominion
Jr., SS, Bridgewater, Va./Turner Ashby
Wright batted .529 (9-17) with three doubles, a triple, a homer, five runs scored and six RBI in ODU’s 3-2 week. The junior shortstop hit .600 (6-10) as ODU took two of three from Towson for its fourth straight series victory. Wright is batting .404 in CAA play this season and a team-best .328 overall with 31 runs scored and 31 RBI.
CAA BASEBALL PITCHER OF THE WEEK:
Brandon McNelis, Northeastern
Sr., RHP, Goldens Bridge, N.Y./John Jay
McNelis threw a complete-game, 3-hit shutout in Northeastern’s 5-0 victory over Hofstra on Sunday. The senior right-hander, who didn’t allow a base runner until the fifth inning, struck out seven and walked only one. He improved to 2-3 on the season and completed a weekend in which the Huskies’ pitching staff recorded three straight shutouts.
CAA BASEBALL ROOKIES OF THE WEEK:
Danny Gatto, Delaware
Fr., RHP, Dover, Del./Dover
Gatto gave up only four hits over six shutout innings in Delaware’s 6-5 victory at UNC Wilmington last Saturday. The freshman right-hander struck out six and walked only one, but didn’t figure in the decision.He’s 1-2 with a 3.49 ERA for the season.
William Prince, UNC Wilmington
Fr., RHP, Wilson, N.C./Fike
Price surrendered just one hit over six scoreless innings in a pair of relief appearances for UNC Wilmington last week. The right-hander was dominant in a five-inning relief stint against Charleston, giving up one hit and retiring the final 14 batters he faced.
DELAWARE (18-14 overall, 10-5 in CAA)
The Blue Hens took over sole possession of first place after winning two of three at UNCW over the weekend. Sophomore DJ Long batted .375 (6-16) in the series and belted a game-winning homer in the top of the 9th in UD’s 6-5 triumph on Saturday. Steve Ulaky went 2-for-4 with three runs scored and two RBI in Friday’s 7-1 win over the Seahawks and was 3-for-4 with two runs on Saturday.Pitcher Eric Young gave up just one run on six hits over 7.1 innings to improve his record to 4-2. Freshman Danny Gatto surrendered just four hits over six shutout innings on Saturday and fanned six, but didn’t get a decision. Three Hens pitchers combined on a 3-hit shutout as UD beat Lehigh 5-0 to reach the championship of the Liberty Bell Classic. The Hens meet Villanova on Tuesday.
GEORGE MASON (14-19-1 overall, 3-12 in CAA)
The Patriots swept a pair of games from George Washington before dropping two of three to VCU over the weekend. Mason hit .320 as a team and had a solid 4.68 staff ERA, but was hurt by 12 errors that led to nine unearned runs. Zack Helgeson smacked three homers to increase his season total to 10, which marks the 11th straight season that a Mason player has hit double-digit homers. Freshman Jordan Hill batted .444 with a pair of triples, while rookie Blaise Fernandez hit .263 with four doubles and a triple. Freshman pitcher Neight Hoffa didn’t allow an earned run in 4.2 innings of work in three appearances and fellow freshman Michael Bowie limited GW to six hits over five frames.
GEORGIA STATE (25-9 overall, 7-5 in CAA)
The Panthers capped a 3-1 week by winning a series over JMU for the first time ever. GSU became the fastest squad in school history to reach the 25-win mark. Senior Rob Lind batted .375 with three homers and six RBI last week, highlighted by a game-winning grand slam in the 9th on Sunday that gave the Panthers a 9-6 victory. Ryan Fleming also went deep three times last week and leads GSU with 11 homers and 41 RBI for the year. Senior Charley Olson threw his second career complete game at JMU on Saturday, giving up nine hits and three runs in nine innings. Freshman Sam Agnew-Wieland made his first career start in a 9-4 win over Mercer and allowed five hits over five innings to get the victory.
HOFSTRA (6-20 overall, 5-10 in CAA)
The Pride topped Albany 10-7 for their first non-conference win of the year, but then were swept in a three-game CAA series at Northeastern over the weekend. Hofstra failed to score in all three games at NU and managed just 11 hits in the series. The Pride got solid pitching as David D’Errico threw his second straight complete game in Friday’s 3-0 setback to the Huskies. Rob Kumbatovic gave up only six hits in seven shutout innings on Saturday, but didn’t get a decision in a 1-0 loss. Four different players drove in two runs in the Albany win, including T.J. Thomas, who finished 2-for-3 with three runs scored.
JAMES MADISON (22-11 overall, 11-7 in CAA)
The Dukes beat Liberty 16-12, but lost two of three to Georgia State and slipped to second in the CAA standings. Senior David Herbek batted .529 (9-17) with two doubles, a homer, five runs scored and five RBI. He also set the CAA career mark for being hit by a pitch with 51. Three of catcher Jake Lowery’s five hits last week were homers, upping his nation’s best total to 17. He continues to top the nation in slugging (.881), runs (46), homers, RBI (50) and total bases (119). Cole McInturff batted .417 for the week while Bradley Shaban had two doubles and two homers. All-CAA infielder Trevor Knight had career-ending surgery on Monday. He is currently sixth on JMU’s career homers list with 34.
UNC WILMINGTON (16-14 overall, 7-5 in CAA)
The Seahawks went 2-3 last week, but dropped two of three in a first-place battle with Delaware. Junior Andrew Cain batted .474 (9-19) with a double, triple, homer and five RBI. He belted a key three-run homer in Sunday’s 5-1 triumph over UD. Alex Hill also went deep in Sunday’s victory, which was his fifth homer of the year. Matt Campbell had his 20-game hitting streak come to an end on Sunday. Junior Tyler McSwain threw his third career complete game on Sunday, giving just a run on seven hits while fanning five. McSwain is 2-2 with a 4.29 ERA for the year. Freshman William Prince allowed just one hit and retired the final 14 batters he faced in a five-inning relief outing against Charleston.
NORTHEASTERN (8-20 overall, 4-8 in CAA)
The Huskies’ pitching staff threw three consecutive shutouts as NU swept a weekend series from Hofstra. It was NU’s first sweep of a CAA foe since 2009 and it’s the first time the Huskies have recorded three straight shutouts since 1986. Senior Les Williams threw a complete-game 6-hitter with seven strikeouts in Friday’s 3-0 triumph. Andrew Leenhouts gave up only two hits over eight innings and Dylan Maki tossed a perfect 9th in a 1-0 win on Saturday. Senior Brandon McNelis capped the series with a complete-game 3-hit shutout in Sunday’s 5-0 win as he struck out seven. Freshman Aaron Barbosa batted .313 with two runs and two RBI. He is currently riding a 10-game hitting streak.
OLD DOMINION (17-17 overall, 9-6 in CAA)
The Monarchs, who had a 3-2 week, took two of three from Towson to remain just a game out of first place. ODU has won four straight CAA series. Shortstop Josh Wright had another big week, batting .529 (9-17) with three doubles, a triple, a homer, five runs scored and six RBI. Wright is hitting .404 in CAA play. Junior Ben Tomchick threw eight scoreless innings last week, with seven coming in a 3-0 shutout of Towson on Saturday. Tomchick is 5-3 with a 3.04 ERA for the year. Freshman Dean Ali tossed 5.1 innings of scoreless relief over three appearances, lowering his ERA to 1.35 overall and 0.54 in 10 CAA games.
TOWSON (13-18-1 overall, 7-8 in CAA)
The Tigers beat Delaware State to push their winning streak to six before losing two of three at ODU over the weekend. Towson won the finale at ODU, 5-2, as freshman Hunter Bennett contributed two hits and two RBI. Senior Charlie Cononie improved to 4-2 with a 3.40 ERA after giving up two runs over 6.0 innings with eight strikeouts. Freshman Christian Duclos allowed just two hits over 4.1 shutout innings of relief last week and earned his first two career saves at DSU and ODU. Towson is now 6-1 in Sunday games this season. Senior Nick Natoli moved into 10th place on the school’s career hits list with 223.
VCU (13-17 overall, 6-6 in CAA)
The Rams went 3-1 last week and got back to .500 in CAA play with a pair of weekend wins at George Mason. Senior John Lenherr batted .357 with a homer, six runs scored and three RBI. He continues to top the CAA in batting (.432) and on-base percentage (.518). Taylor Perkins homered twice and drove in four at Mason, while Kyle Sutherland had a team-high five RBI in two games. Seth Cutler-Voltz gave up just one run in 7.1 innings in VCU’s 3-2 11-inning win on Saturday and Kyle Haynes allowed two runs in 6.1 frames in the nightcap on Saturday but didn’t get a decision. Freshman Ryan Morrison got his first win after throwing two scoreless innings as VCU rallied past Mason 15-10 on Sunday.
WILLIAM & MARY (18-16 overall, 9-6 in CAA)
The Tribe edged Richmond 9-8 and then split a home-and-home weekend series with Longwood. Senior Jonathan Slattery batted .500 (6-12) with a pair of doubles and four RBI. He also smacked a game-winning homer in the 10th to lift W&M past UR, 9-8. Derek Lowe was 2-for-4 with three RBI against the Spiders and Ryan Brown was 3-for-3. Senior Logan Billbrough threw a complete-game 4-hitter in a 6-1 win over LU on Sunday. He struck out six but had his scoreless innings streak snapped at 26. Billbrough is 4-1 with a 2.52 ERA for the season and opponents are hitting just .187 against him.