Mustangs Place Two On All-GPAC First Team
Rowe Named GPAC Player Of The Week
Former Mustang Pitcher Storm Throne Eyes Spring Training
Mustangs Second In GPAC Pre-Season Poll
Mustangs Add Three Transfer Pitchers Over Semester Break
Morningside College head baseball coach Brian Drent has announced the names of six high school recruits who will join the Mustangs next season.
The recruits are:
Jacob Lamoreux, an outfielder from Le Mars, Iowa. Lamoreux is a senior at Le Mars Community High School, where he earned second-team All-Lakes Conference honors last summer. Lamoreux collected 36 hits in 123 at-bats for a .293 batting average with one double, one triple, 15 RBIs, and four stolen bases. He struck out only 10 times in 123 at-bats.
Jared Novotny, a pitcher from Ashland, Neb. Novotny, a senior at Ashland-Greenwood High School, received honorable mention Class B all-state recognition from both the Omaha World-Herald and the Lincoln Journal-Star during his senior season while playing for Platte Valley.
Brandon Thongvivong, an infielder from Windom, Minn. Thongvivong is a senior at Windom Area High School, where he is off to a solid start to his senior campaign with 14 hits in 31 at-bats for a .452 batting average with six doubles, one triple, eight RBIs, 11 runs scored, and three stolen bases. He also has a 1-1 record with two saves and a 2.71 earned run average in four pitching appearances. Thongvivong has struck out 10 batters and allowed only seven hits in 10.1 innings.
Thongvivong earned honorable mention All-Southwest Conference honors last season when he had 31 hits in 84 at-bats for a .370 batting average with seven doubles, two triples, one home run, 24 RBIs, and six stolen bases. He also had a 1-0 pitching record with one save.
Nate Trobee, an outfielder-first baseman from Johnstown, Colo. Trobee is a senior at Roosevelt High School, where he has punished opposing pitchers for a .467 batting average with 28 hits in 60 at-bats so far this season. Trobe has five doubles, one triple, and a team-high two home runs, 20 RBIs, and 16 runs scored.
He collected 17 hits in 53 at-bats for a .321 batting average with five doubles, one triple, one home run, and nine RBIs during his junior campaign. Trobee led the team with his five doubles.
Jon Van Beek, a pitcher-infielder from Inwood, Iowa. Van Beek is a senior at West Lyon High School, where he was an Iowa Newspaper Association second-team Class 1A all-state pitcher last season. Van Beek, who also received first-team All-Siouxland Conference honors, had an 8-1 record with a microscopic 0.45 earned run average. He dominated opposing hitters by allowing only 27 hits in 61.2 innings pitched while holding the opposition to a paltry .107 batting average. He walked 26 batters and fanned 116 batters to average almost two strikeouts per inning. Van Beek hit .354 at the plate with 28 hits in 79 at-bats. He had 10 doubles and 18 RBIs.
He was also a first-team All-Siouxland Conference performer as a sophomore when he fashioned a 6-2 pitching record with a 0.78 earned run average. Van Beek allowed only 33 hits in 54 innings to hold the opposition to a .151 batting average. He had 14 walks and 66 strikeouts. Van Beek batted .313 with three doubles, one triple, and 20 RBIs.
Jared Van Dyke, a pitcher from Highland Ranch, Colo. Van Dyke is a senior at Denver Christian High School, where he has a 2-1 record with a 5.95 earned run average in seven appearances so far this season. He has struck out 17 batters in 20 innings pitched. Offensively he has a .275 batting average with a double, five RBIs, and three stolen bases.
He had a 2-0 record with a 3.86 earned run average in nine appearances last season. Van Dyke allowed 15 hits to go along with 16 walks and 16 strikeouts in 16.1 innings pitched.
The recruits will join a Morningside team that posted a 22-27 record and finished third in the Great Plains Athletic Conference standings with a 12-8 record during the 2013 season.
Morningside College’s Jeff Gacke and Cole Halgerson have been named to the 2013 All-Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) Baseball First Team as selected by the league’s head coaches.
Gacke, a senior pitcher from Rock Rapids, Iowa, was the top winner on the Mustangs’ pitching staff with a 5-5 record. He compiled a 3.41 earned run average in 12 appearances, including 11 starts. Gacke threw two complete games and was part of three combined shutouts. He allowed 57 hits in 58 innings. Gacke led the Mustangs’ pitchers with 45 strikeouts and was one of the top control pitchers in the nation with only nine walks.
Gacke moved up from last year’s All-GPAC Second Team.
Halgerson, an outfielder from Sioux Falls, S.D., was the Mustangs’ team batting champion as a freshman after he collected 43 hits in 128 at-bats for a .336 batting average with nine doubles, 16 RBIs, 23 runs scored, and seven stolen bases. Along with leading the Mustangs in batting average, Halgerson also topped the team with his nine doubles.
Aside from their two first-team selections, the Mustangs placed A.J. Staiert and Tanner O’Neill on the All-GPAC Second Team.
Staiert, a junior utility infielder from Sioux City, was the Mustangs’ second leading hitter with a .323 batting average and team leader with 29 runs scored, 27 walks, a .437 slugging percentage, and a .422 on-base percentage. He had eight doubles, five triples, 24 RBIs, and 17 stolen bases.
O’Neill, a junior second baseman from Sioux City, batted .300 with four doubles, 28 RBIs, and 10 stolen bases. He led the Mustangs in RBIs for the second year in a row.
Morningside’s Josh Gross, Keaton Rowe, Matt Russell, John Sorenson, and Lance Spongberg were all named to the All-GPAC honorable mention list.
Gross, a senior third baseman from Jefferson, S.D., batted .227 with two doubles, one triple, three home runs, and 12 RBIs. He hit all three of the Mustangs’ home runs this season.
Rowe, a junior outfielder from Le Mars, Iowa, batted .295 with eight doubles, one triple, and 23 RBIs.
Russell, a sophomore pitcher from Nebraska City, Neb., had a 2-3 record with a 2.18 earned run average. He allowed 28 hits and had 26 walks and 21 strikeouts in 41.1 innings pitched. Russell held the opposition to a .188 batting average.
Sorenson, a junior pitcher from Omaha, Neb., had a team-high five saves as the Mustangs’ closer. He had a 0-4 record with a 2.66 earned run average in a team-high 16 appearances. Sorenson allowed 20 hits, walked only five batters, and had 21 strikeouts in 23.2 innings pitched.
Spongberg, a freshman pitcher from Sutton, Neb., had a 1-1 record with two saves and a 2.03 earned run average in 15 appearances. Spongberg, who led the Mustangs in earned run average, allowed 30 hits to go along with 14 walks and 33 strikeouts in 31 innings pitched.
Morningside posted a 22-27 record and finished third in the GPAC standings with a 12-8 league record during the 2013 season.
Click here for the complete 2013 All-GPAC Baseball Team.
Keaton Rowe, a junior outfielder from Le Mars, Iowa, has been named the Hauff Mid-America Sports/Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) Baseball Player of the Week for March 18-24.
Rowe went five-for-eight with three doubles and five RBIs when the Mustangs split a non-conference doubleheader with Graceland University. Morningside was limited to three hits in a 5-2 loss in the opener and Rowe had two of them with a double and single. He went three-for-four with two doubles and four RBIs to lead the Mustangs to a 9-1 victory in the nightcap.
Rowe has six multiple hit performances in his last 10 games and is the Mustangs’ leading hitter with a .391 batting average.
Former Morningside College pitcher Storm Throne is scheduled to report on March 2 to the Chicago White Sox Minor League Spring Training camp in Glendale, Ariz.
Throne, the White Sox’ 25th round pick in last year’s Major League Baseball (MLB) First-Year Player Draft, pitched last season for the Bristol White Sox, a rookie-level team in Bristol, Va., that competes in the Appalachian League, and then participated in the Instructional League last fall in Arizona.
Throne, who had a 2-2 record with an 8.38 earned run average in 15 appearances at Bristol, said the biggest adjustment he had to make at the professional level was the necessity to throw more off-speed pitches.
“In college I was able to get away with throwing mostly fastballs,” Throne said. “Last year at Bristol, everyone was throwing in the upper 90s. It was an adjustment having to throw more off-speed pitches because all the hitters are able to time up the fastball.”
Throne made significant progress while participating in the Instructional League, where the players ranged from the rookie league to Triple A levels.
“Things went really well there and I was able to get in roughly 20 innings, going about one or two innings each game,” Throne said. “I worked really hard on developing my off-speed pitches. It was a great experience because I had so much one-on-one time with our pitching coaches. We had four pitching coaches there and not that many pitchers.”
Throne comes from a basketball family and his primary sport coming to Morningside was basketball, so he went to the Instructional League intent on soaking up as much knowledge about the game as he could.
“I had played basketball year round and hadn’t spent that much time on baseball, so I had a lot to learn,” Throne said. “That’s why it was such a positive experience going to the Instructional League. I went down there with the attitude of being a student of the game. The pitching coaches down there were unbelievable and all of them had pitched in the Major Leagues, so I learned a lot during my one-on-one time with them.”
Throne was a starting pitcher at Morningside, where he had a 9-7 record with a 4.06 earned run average over his sophomore and junior seasons. As a junior he struck out 61 batters in 55 innings while holding the opposition to a .224 batting average. At Bristol, all of his appearances came as a reliever, where he logged 19.1 innings in 15 outings.
Throne said he won’t know his long term role in the White Sox organization until after spring training, where he could get a look as both a starter or a reliever and may get an opportunity to pitch in the back ends of some MLB spring training games. His goal is to break camp with the Kannapolis Intimidators, a White Sox Class A affiliate in North Carolina that competes in the South Atlantic League.
“I know that I will be competing for a spot on the Single A team as a reliever and that if I’m going to start I will probably have to go back to rookie ball, but my goal is to go to Kannapolis and compete for a starting position,” Throne said.
Morningside College head baseball coach Brian Drent has announced the names of three transfers who enrolled at Morningside over the semester break and will compete for the Mustangs during the upcoming 2013 season.
The transfers are:
Ross Ackerman, a pitcher from Rock Rapids, Iowa, who is a transfer from NCAA Division II Northern State University. Ackerman is a 2012 graduate of Central Lyon High School, where he had a 5-2 record with a 2.33 earned run average last summer. He displayed overpowering stuff by allowing only 32 hits and striking out 61 batters in 51 innings pitched. He held the opposition to a .168 batting average. Ackerman had a season’s high 11 strikeouts in games against Okoboji and George-Little Rock. Offensively he batted .348 with four doubles, two home runs, and 18 RBIs.
Brett DeJong, a pitcher from Omaha, Neb., who is a transfer from Garden City Community College. DeJong is a 2012 graduate of Omaha Burke High School, where he earned honorable mention Class A all-state honors from the Omaha World-Herald as a senior after he logged a 4-2 record with a 3.92 earned run average. DeJong allowed 43 hits in 49.2 innings with 17 walks and 50 strikeouts.
Chris Eckstaine, a pitcher from Le Mars, Iowa, who is a transfer from Iowa Western Community College. Eckstaine is a 2012 graduate of Le Mars Community High School, where he earned second-team Class 3A all-state honors from the Iowa Newspaper Association and the Iowa High School Baseball Coaches Association after he went 8-1 with a 0.82 earned run average last summer. Eckstaine held the opposition to a .138 batting average and overpowered opposing hitters with 62 strikeouts in 51 innings pitched. He allowed 32 hits and walked 26 batters. Offensively he hit .302 with four doubles, three home runs, and 24 RBIs.
Morningside posted a 37-21 record last season and finished second in the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) standings with a 13-7 league record in its first season under Drent. The Mustangs will open the 2013 campaign with a doubleheader against Judson College on Friday, Feb. 8, in the Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minn.
Morningside is picked second in the GPAC Baseball Coaches’ Pre-Season Poll.
The Mustangs received three of the 11 first place votes and 90 points to finish six points behind defending league champion Doane in the pre-season poll.
Morningside posted a 37-21 record and finished second in the GPAC standings with a 13-7 league mark during the 2012 campaign in its first season under head coach Brian Drent. The Mustangs achieved their fourth 30-win season in the last five years.
The Mustangs will open the 2013 season with a doubleheader against Judson College on Friday, Feb. 8, in the Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minn.
Click here for the complete GPAC Baseball Coaches’ Pre-Season Poll results.