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Recreational Sports

Part 2 Great West Baseball Preview

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Great West Conference Logowww.greatwestconference.org

As promised, here is the second part of the 2010 Great West baseball preview. 

University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux
Location: Grand Forks, ND
Colors: kelly green and white
Coach: Jeff Dodson, 2nd season at UND
2009 Record: 14-29
Top Returning Hitter: INF Jake Magner, .393 avg, 10 HR, 51 rbi, 66 hits
Top Returning Pitcher: David Lind, 4-3 5.83 ERA

Outlook: The Fighting Sioux have a fighting chance to challenge UNC for fourth place in the conference. Besides Magner, OF Aaron Cook (.328 avg, 27 rbi) and IF Andrew Gundmunson (.314, 25 rbi) lead the offense. After them UND needs help. Pitching will once again be a strong point for the Sioux as they bring back Lind and strikeout leader Derek Bermaier (45k, 62 IP). They are a young team so they should get stronger for the next few seasons.

Houston Baptist Huskies
Location: Houston, TX
Colors: royal blue and orange
Coach: Jared Moon, 5th season at HBU
2009 Record: 11-40
Top Returning Hitter: INF Robbie Buller, .297 avg., 38 hits, 20 rbi
Top Returning Pitcher: Stephen Nikonchik, 1-3 8.39 ERA, 39.2 IP, 29 Ks.

Outlook: Since returning from NAIA where HBU was a powerhouse, the Huskies have struggled. Which they will do again this season. With only 9 of their 27 players being upperclassmen, there is nowhere to go but up.

New Jersey Institute of Technology Highlanders
Location: Newark, NJ
Colors: red and white
Coach: Brian Callahan, 10th season at NJIT
2009 Record: 4-33
Top Returning Hitter: OF Anthony Caiola, .400 avg,
Top Returning Pitcher: Reid Okita, 1-6 9.96 ERA

Outlook: NJIT is a young team which is a lot like HBU. They need help to raise their team batting average (.232). They need help everywhere, if Okita can lead the pitching staff, and hitters like Vincent Del Vecchio come around, NJIT could have a season to build upon for the future.

Chicago State University Cougars
Location: Chicago, IL
Colors: forest green and white
Coach: Michael Caston, 2nd season at CSU
2009 Record: 3-38
Top Returning Hitter: OF Pat Hernandez, .336 avg, 41 hits, 10 rbi
Top Returning Pitcher: Kevin Hussey, 1-1 8.46 ERA

Outlook: The Cougars have no where to go but up. They had a .237 team batting average last season, and allowed an average of 13 runs per game in ’09. If their offense can score more than 3 runs per game, CSU may leave NJIT in the cellar of the GWC.

GWC 2010 Preseason Co-players of the Year: 3B Jace Brinkerhoff, Utah Valley, INF Abraham Garcia, Texas-Pan Am.
GWC 2010 Preseason Pitcher of the Year: Andrew Guarrasi, NYIT
GWC 2010 Preseason Coach of the Year: Bob Hirschfield, NYIT

2010 Predicted Order of Finish:

1. NYIT
2. Texas Pan-Am
3. Utah Valley
4. Northern Colorado
5. North Dakota
6. Houston Baptist
7. NJIT
8. Chicago State

For complete coverage of the 2010 Great West baseball season check www.examiner.com/x-36143-Fort-Collins-Baseball-Examiner.

Comments

  • KEITH 4 years ago

    I LOVE THE COVERAGE YOU ARE GIVING THIS NEW CONFERENCE THE GREAT WEST. PLEASE KEEP IT UP. NOW LETS TRY TO GET THE NCAA TO GIVE THE WINNER OF THIS CONFERENCE AN AUTOMATIC BID LIKE IT DOES WITH THE REST OF THE DIV I SCHOOLS. IT WOULD DO ALLOT FOR THOSE TEAMS IN THAT CONFERENCE, SCHOOL, FANS AND ALUMNI,DONORS ETC.HOW CLOSLY WILL YOU BE FOLLOWING THIS CONFERENCE THIS YEAR.I HAVE TOLD SEVERAL PEOPLE ABOUT YOUR COVERAGE AND THEY WILL BE FOLLOWING IT ALL YEAR AS WELL. ANTICIPATE A HUNDRED MORE HITS A WEEK ONTO THIS SITE AS WE LOOK FOR UPDATES ABOUT OUR NEW CONFERENCE, THE "GREAT WEST" THANKS, KEITH