Austin Peay Sports Information
Clarksville, TN – As the summer comes to an end, student-athletes are making the trek back to campus. Among them are members of Austin Peay State University’s baseball team who spent months honing their craft.
Twenty Governors competed in Collegiate Summer Baseball Leagues across the country. The results were promising from the start, including three all-star selections, and finished with eight players hoisting championship hardware.Three players – Patrick Massoni, Michael Costanzo and Zach Neff – won the California Coast League Championship, August 2nd, with Massoni scoring the game-tying run.
For the season, Massoni was a consistent contributor in his home state, batting .316, scoring a team-leading 37 runs and posted 14 extra-base hits.
Costanzo and Neff each pitched over 27 innings, primarily in relief duty, for Neptune Beach. Along with a 3.56 ERA, Costanzo was 4-1 and second on the team with 50 strikeouts. Neff finished with a 2-0 record, 4.23 ERA and 27 strikeouts.
Also on August 2nd, Josh Rye pitched a complete game in the NABF College Division World Series title game to propel the St. Louis Dodgers to a championship. After a great regular season with the Bandits – 2-2 record, 2.46 ERA and 39 strikeouts – the local Montgomery Central product was added to the Dodgers for their World Series run.
Switching to the East Coast, Garrett Copeland and Ridge Smith helped lead the Vermont Mountaineers to a New England Collegiate College League title, Tuesday. Smith delivered a perfect push bunt to score Copeland in the top of the 9th, leading to the eventual game-winning run. Copeland batted .287 on the season (.385 in the playoffs), including a team-high 24 stolen bases. Despite a .172 average in the postseason, Smith was an RBI producer throughout much of the year, driving in 18 runs with seven doubles and three homers.
On Thursday, Kyle Blackburn and Josh Wilson were the final pairing of champions. The Terre Haute Rex teammates won the Prospect League Championship, 3-1, with Blackburn scoring one of two eighth-inning runs after pinch-running for Wilson. Blackburn played 34 games, batting .239 with eight doubles and a home run. Wilson hit .266, added 22 RBI and 20 runs scored.
In the Cape Cod League, two players reached the semifinals for their respective teams. Alex Robles, of the Bourne Braves, ran into tough luck record-wise, going 1-5 over the summer. However, the right-hander maintained a 3.75 ERA with 26 strikeouts over 38 innings. Robles also started Game 2 of the CCBL World Series, giving up just one run over six innings in a no decision.
On the opposite side of the bracket, Jared Carkuff made 12 relief appearances for the Orleans Firebirds. After compiling a 1-0 record and 4.02 ERA throughout the regular season, Carkuff pitched three innings in the CCBL Playoffs, allowing one run on two hits with three strikeouts.
Cayce Bredlau and Dre Gleason, in Northwoods Leagues’ Batte Creek Bombers, improved their numbers in the second half of the season. Bredlau finished with a .270 average, 30 RBI, and 20 extra-base hits (seven triples). Meanwhile, Gleason hit .266 with 30 RBI and three homers.
Chase Hamilton and Shane Lantigua suited up for the Clarinda A’s, who finished three games above .500. After hitting 11 total home runs in the MINK League Home Run Derby, Hamilton continued to be a steady producer of extra-base hits. His seven doubles and four triples tied for the team lead and he also added one homer. Lantigua appeared in 11 games as a reliever, finishing the year with a 4.97 ERA, 11 strikeouts and four saves.
In the South Division of the MINK League, Wesley Purcell played eight games for the Branson Nationals. He finished with a .240 clip, with two of his six hits leading to extra bases.
A trio of Govs – Jordan Harmon, T.J. Marik and Imani Willis – wrapped up their summer with the Waynesboro (Virginia) Generals in the Valley League. The right-hander, Harmon, was summoned 11 times out of the bullpen, compiling a 3-1 record in that span with six strikeouts. Marik had five hits, a double and home run, while Willis batted .209 with 15 RBI and 19 runs scored.