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Gallaudet baseball places five on NEAC all-conference teams, Bissell repeats as Player of the Year, Pride named Coach of the Year

GANSEVOORT, N.Y. – The North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) released its 2012 baseball all-conference awards on Wednesday and Gallaudet University sophomore outfielder William Bissell (Brewer, Maine) was named the West Division Player of the Year for a second straight year while Curtis Pride was named West Division Coach of the Year for the first time. Gallaudet had five honorees, the most in the conference, as three Bison made the first team and two players were picked to the second team.

Bissell earns his second All-NEAC first team honor and is joined by senior William Chapman (Los Angeles, Calif.) and sophomore catcher Casey Hicks (Henderson, Nev.). Junior shortstop Tommy Barksdale (Brookeville, Md.) and sophomore Marcus Smith (Baltimore, Md.) were selected to the all-conference second team. This is the second all-conference honor for Barksdale and Chapman, who were on the second team last season, while Hicks and Smith make their first appearance on the All-NEAC teams.

Pride has guided the Bison (22-15, 10-4 NEAC West) to their first winning record since 1976 and the 22 wins are a program record. Gallaudet will make its second consecutive appearance in the NEAC West Division tournament this weekend as the No. 3 seed. GU will enter the tournament with a nine-game winning streak.

Bissell, a preseason All-American honorable mention selection named by D3baseball.com, started all 37 games for the Bison and is fourth in the nation in triples (seven), 24th in slugging percentage (.730), 28th for sacrifice flies (five), 32nd for total bases (89), 34th in runs (41), 46th in home runs (six) as of April 24. Bissell leads the NEAC/NAC in triples, second in the conference in runs scored, sacrifice flies, total bases, third in the NEAC in home runs, slugging percentage, fifth in hits (48), seventh in RBI (31), batting average (.393) and eighth in stolen bases (15). Bissell is not only a threat on offense but he plays spectacular defense as he posted a .954 fielding percentage to go with 84 put outs and five assists. The sophomore also won the NEAC West Baseball Student-Athlete of the Week for March 19.

Chapman leads the NEAC/NAC in doubles (15) and hit by pitch (12), third in batting average (.414), fourth in on base percentage (.493), fifth in hits (48), runs (37), eighth in total bases (68), ninth in slugging percentage (.586), 13th in RBI (28) and 14th sacrifice flies (three) in the 36 games he started. His doubles total ranks 25th in the country and 35th in hit by pitch in the national Division III rankings. In the field he boasts a .962 fielding percentage. He also made 10 pitching appearances (five starts) where he went 2-0 in conference games.

Hicks is one of the top catchers in the NEAC/NAC as he has thrown out 11 base runners from behind the plate. He is fifth in the conference for sacrifice flies (four), triples (three), on base percentage (.491), eighth in batting average (.393), 13th in hit by pitch (six), RBI (28), 14th in slugging percentage (.539), 17th in stolen bases (11) as he started 30 games. Behind the plate he made 126 put outs with 20 assists and a .973 fielding percentage.

Barksdale ranks 25th in the nation for doubles (15) and 26th in Division III for walks (26). He leads the NEAC/NAC in both categories (doubles, walks), third in on base percentage (.494), fifth in home runs (four), sixth in runs (36), total bases (73), eighth in slugging percentage (.589), ninth in plate appearances (154), 11th in hits (46), 16th in batting average (.371), 17th at bats (124) and stolen bases (11). Barksdale has started in every game (37) as he has made 52 put outs and ranks sixth in the conference with 99 assists.

Smith is a two-time NEAC West Baseball Pitching Student-Athlete of Week (March 19, April 9). The sophomore has accumulated a 6-3 pitching record in nine starts and is 3-1 against NEAC West foes. Smith is first in the NEAC/NAC in games started for a pitcher (nine), second in the conference for wins (six), second in the conference with 58.2 innings pitched, second in game appearances for a pitcher (13), seventh in shutouts (one), 13th for complete games (three), 19th in strikeouts (26) and 23rd in earned run average (4.30) but 14th in conference ERA (2.77). Opponents only batted .273 against Smith as he played in 32 games (30 starts). At the plate he batted .358 (24-for-67) and had a .952 fielding percentage in the field.

Penn St.-Berks senior Matt Emrick (3-1) was the Pitcher of the Year as he finished the season with 11 strikeouts in six games. Penn St.-Abington freshman Matt Lawson earned Rookie of the Year honors from the conference coaches, who select the postseason awards. The NEAC coaches select the top 24 players in the conference and don't necessarily select the top players at each position.

Note: Statistics, national rankings and conference rankings are through April 24

Also see:

2012 Gallaudet University Baseball All-NEAC West Division Honorees

William Bissell headshot  



William Chapman headshot  
      Casey Hicks headshot

William Bissell
NEAC West Player of the Year
All-NEAC First Team




William Chapman
All-NEAC First Team

     

Casey Hicks
All-NEAC First Team

                 
Tommy Barksdale headshot  
      Marcus Smith headshot  
      Curtis Pride headshot

Tommy Barksdale
All-NEAC Second Team

      Marcus Smith
All-NEAC Second Team
      Curtis Pride
NEAC West Coach of the Year