Four baseball Scots tabbed USA South All-Conference

Four baseball Scots tabbed USA South All-Conference

The USA South Athletic Conference has announced its 2019 All-Conference awards for baseball, as four Maryville College players were on the list.

The Scots' Jordan Davis, Mike Homan and Christian Poulsen made Third-Team All-Conference, while senior Nick McClendon was named to the All-Sportsmanship squad. All honors were determined by votes from the baseball coach at each institution.

The quad led Maryville to its fifth-consecutive 20-win season, as they advanced to the USA South Athletic Conference Tournament.

Davis, a junior right hander, led the Scots on the mound with a 2.60 ERA in 12 appearances. The Maryville, Tenn., native went 3-3 on the season, tossing a team-leading 67 strikeouts. He earned back-to-back USA South Player of the Week bids, while tossing a pair of complete-game shutouts.

"He's been phenomenal," Head Coach Cody Church said. "He set the tone for us every weekend. Earlier in the year, I think he had some tough-luck losses where we were struggling offensively. It probably hurt him in terms of All-Conference, but from a teammate standpoint, he's just a competitor. That doesn't bother him. He doesn't care if he's First-Team, Third-Team or no-team. He just wants to compete and help the team win. The last month of the season for him has really been special. He's helped our pitching staff and our team tremendously."

Davis allowed just 20 earned runs on 48 hits this season. He tossed 69.1 innings on the year.

Poulsen - a native of Schaumburg, Ill. - played at pitcher, third, second, first, outfield and designated hitter this season for the Scots, as he earned his All-Conference bid at Utility/DH. 

He pitched 40.1 innings, while holding a 3.79 ERA on the year. He went 4-2 on the mound, as he defeated No. 21 Methodist University in a complete-game effort. Poulsen struck out 20, while allowing just 17 earned runs on the season.

"I'm preaching from the choir here, but I don't think the DH and utility should be grouped together," Church said. "I think that's two completely different categories. Utility player is a guy that's doing everything, and I think designated hitter is the exact opposite of that. I think for what he's done, I don't know that anybody in our league has made the impact he has for us. I think he started five or six positions for us, and he's been great offensively. Poulsen's been the guy that's kind of been the glue to the team. Really, through the ups and downs this year, we've been able to move him around to a lot of different positions. He's kind of been able to keep the ship afloat, I think. We're so thrilled for the year that he's had."

Poulsen hit a team-leading .380, as he had 46 hits. He added a double and a triple, while he scored 21 runs. Poulsen stole 13 bases, as he held a .405 slugging percentage.

Homan - a senior at third base - tallied a .295 batting average. The Elmhurst, Ill., native posted five doubles and a triple in his 31-hit season, as he stole nine bases.

"Mike had a great year," Church said. "He's really come on strong over the last couple weeks. He kind of started slow a little bit, and honestly, I think his numbers don't really show what he's done. He missed some time there in the middle part of the year, and I think for him to still be named to the All-Conference team with the amount of time he missed, it really shows what type of senior year he had for us."

McClendon - a senior pitcher from Destrehan, La. - earned All-Sportsmanship honors for Maryville. He battled through numerous injuries in his career, as he tossed 4.1 innings this season. He allowed just a pair of hits, as he struck out five batters.

"I'll be honest," Church said. "I don't think we have anybody on our team that would still be here if they had to go through what Nick's gone through. Honestly, if I put myself in his shoes, I can't say that I would have either. It's hard to say that, but it's true. It's his senior year, and he hadn't been on the mound since his freshman year. To rehab two shoulder surgeries and continue to show up everyday and be a great teammate and a great leader, he just kept coming back for more. He's deserving. He's going to be so well prepared for life...he's proved that whatever punches come his way, he's going to be able to get back up and fight like crazy. We're so happy for what he's done this year."

Piedmont College's Brady Ballstadt was named Player of the Year while his coach, Justin Scali earned Coach of the Year honors. LaGrange College's Austin Fain was named Pitcher of the Year, Pfeiffer University's Bryce Marsh earned Rookie of the Year honors while Huntingdon College's Tucker Duke earned Rookie Pitcher of the Year accolades. 

Player of the Year Pitcher of the Year Rookie of the Year Rookie Pitcher of the Year Coach of the Year

Brady Ballstadt

Austin Fain

Bryce Marsh

Tucker Duke

Justin Scali

The 2019 USA South Baseball All-Conference Team:

First Team Second Team Third Team
1B - Andrew Burden, Piedmont
2B - Tyler Burdette, Piedmont
3B - Tucker Criswell, Methodist
SS - Wes Powell, Huntingdon
C - Alex Kachler, Methodist
DH/Util - Bryce Marsh, Pfeiffer
OF - Brady Ballstadt, Piedmont
OF - Cedrick Kornegay, N.C. Wesleyan
OF - Kirby Lambert, Pfeiffer
SP - Sam Carpenter, Piedmont
SP - Austin Fain, LaGrange
SP - Nick Richmond, Pfeiffer
RP - Matt Vonderschmidt, Piedmont
1B - Trey Croom, N.C. Wesleyan
2B - Ira Dorin, Pfeiffer
3B - Tyler Price, Greensboro
SS - Bryan Kowalski, Pfeiffer
C - Scotty McGuire, Greensboro
DH/Util. - EJ Churchich, LaGrange
OF - McKinley Erves, LaGrange
OF - John Mitchell, Covenant
OF - Joe Ruth, LaGrange
SP - Wallace Henry, Huntingdon
SP - Tristen Luck, Methodist
SP - Nathan Ray, Pfeiffer
RP - Spencer Douches, LaGrange
1B - Mason Striplin, Pfeiffer
2B - Brad Pennington, N.C. Wesleyan
3B - Mike Homan, Maryville
SS - Matthias Carter, Methodist
C - Chaston Gordon, Pfeiffer
DH/Util. - Christian Poulsen, Maryville
OF - Logan Andrews, N.C. Wesleyan
OF - Ethan Carmack, Methodist
OF - Lincoln Hewett, Greensboro
SP - Jordan Davis, Maryville
SP - Richie Post, LaGrange
SP - Kross Robinson, Brevard
RP - David Craft, Piedmont
  Martin Nicolay, Averett
Griffin Norris, Berea
JJ Wilkes, Brevard
Ken Alexander, Covenant
Tyler Price, Greensboro
Garrett Breland, Huntingdon
Austin McDade, LaGrange
Nick McClendon, Maryville
Will Walker, Methodist
Brandon Wheat, N.C. Wesleyan
Ira Dorin, Pfeiffer
David Craft, Piedmont
Michael Milian, William Peace