BLOOMINGTON, Minn. -- The 2017 season was a great one on baseball diamonds throughout the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC), with continued depth and parity resulting in an entertaining regular season and conference postseason tournament. Monday, the top individual performers were honored for their heroics with the announcement of the 2017 MIAC Baseball Awards.
St. John's freshman centerfielder Wyatt Ulrich (Indus Falls, Minn. / International Falls) was not only named the Rookie-of-the-Year, but also the Max Molock Most Valuable Player-of-the-Year in recognition for his outstanding season. St. Thomas sophomore starter Henry DeCaster (Shoreview, Minn. / Mounds View) was honored with the Mike Augustin Pitcher-of-the-Year award. Macalester's Matt Parington was recognized by his peers with the Jim Dimick Coach-of-the-Year award. The conference also announced the 2017 MIAC All-Conference Team, the All-Defensive Team and the All-MIAC Sportsmanship Team.
Ulrich made his MIAC debut with an outstanding season recieving both the 2017 Rookie-of-the-Year and Max Molock Most Valuable Player-of-the-Year. Ulrich is the first freshman to earn the conference's MVP since St. Olaf's Brian Sprout in 1999, and is the third Johnnie to win the award (first baseman Ryan Roder '97 in 1997 and catcher/pitcher Kurt Jantscher '15 in 2015). He is the first Johnnie to be named the MIAC's top freshman, which was established in 2009.
Ulrich ended the regular season as the MIAC's leader in batting average (.494), on-base percentage (.523), runs scored (26) and hits (40) in conference play, all from the leadoff spot. His totals for hits and runs were SJU records in MIAC play, while the batting average was fourth-best (minimum 50 at-bats): .615 (32-for-52) by Jon Dold '94 in 1993, .585 (38-for-65) by Roder in 1997 and .521 (25-for-48) by Don Carlson '56 in 1955.
A four-time MIAC Baseball Player of the Week this spring, Ulrich also tied for the national batting title with a .500 average (61-for-122) in all games. The average is the third-best in school history (.562 by Dold in 1993 and .540 by Roder in 1997). Ulrich compiled a 27-game hitting streak and recorded multiple hits in 19 of the 29 games he played, including four 4-hit games and six 3-hit games. He reached base 66.7 percent (32-for-48) of the time to start an inning, batted .514 (36-for-70) with the bases empty and advanced runners at a 69.1-percent clip (38-for-55).
DeCaster was voted the MIAC's top pitcher for his work on the mound and his role in the Royal's season and conference playoffs. Sophomore DeCaster helped the Tommies share the MIAC championship with Bethel -- the program's 14th regular-season title or co-title in the last 15 seasons. In five conference games, DeCaster went 5-0 with an 0.81 ERA and 42 strikeouts to just nine walks over 22 1-3 innings, and limited opponents to a .189 batting average. In all games stats, DeCaster is 8-2 with an 2.28 ERA an 85 strikeouts and just 19 walks in 71 innings.
Parrington's MIAC Coach-of-the-Year honor coincides with Macalester's phenomenal quest to the MIAC playoff championship. Parrington led the Scots to a 26-15 record overall, including a 12-8 mark in conference play, and the program's first MIAC Playoff championship. The 26 victories are a nine-win improvement over last year's record and match the 2011 squad for the most wins in a season. Picked to finish 10th in the MIAC by the conference's preseason poll, Parrington and the Scots beat every team at least once en route to a fourth-place finish and the program's third berth in the MIAC Playoffs. Macalester didn't waste the opportunity in the postseason, scoring 25 runs while defeating regular-season champion Bethel twice and St. Thomas once to earn the program's first trip to the NCAA Division III Championship. Now in his 18th year at Macalester, Parrington has 298 victories in his career.
The conference honored a 30-player All-Conference Team and a nine-player All-Defensive Team with one player at each position and additional pitchers. As part of a conference-wide sportsmanship initiative, the MIAC also announced the 11th-annual All-MIAC Sportsmanship team for baseball. Members of the All-MIAC Sportsmanship team are selected by their coaches and teammates as individuals who demonstrate ideals of positive sportsmanship both on and off the field of competition.
2017 MIAC BASEBALL AWARDS
Max Molock Player-of-the-Year - Wyatt Ulrich, Saint John's (Fr., Indus, Minn. / International Falls)
Mike Augustin Pitcher-of-the-Year - Henry DeCaster, St. Thomas (So., Shoreview, Minn. / Mounds View)
Rookie-of-the-Year - Wyatt Ulrich, Saint John's (Fr., Indus, Minn. / International Falls)
Jim Dimick Coach-of-the-Year - Matt Parrington, Macalester (18th season)
2017 MIAC BASEBALL ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM
|Alex Baretta||Macalester||Jr.||OF||Pittsburgh, Pa. / Central Catholic|
|Michael Bohlke||Bethel||So.||P||Maple Grove, Minn. / Wayzata|
|Collin Brantner||Macalester||Jr.||C||Farmington, Conn. / Kingswood Oxford
|Josh Chatfield||Gustavus||Sr.||OF||Apple Valley, Minn.|
|Sam Cobbs||St. Thomas||So.||OF||Woodbury, Minn. / East Ridge|
|Henry DeCaster||St. Thomas||So.||P||Shoreview, Minn. / Mounds View|
|Jake Dickmeyer||Saint John's||So.||P||Woodbury, Minn.|
|Dylan Edwards-Gaherty||Macalester||Sr.||P||New York, N.Y. / Collegiate School|
|Ben Etzell||Saint John's||Jr.||P||Greenbank, Wash. / Coupeville|
|Joey Fredrickson||Bethel||Fr.||3B||Arden Hills, Minn. / Mounds View|
|Austin Heuer||Carleton||So.||P||Elk River, Minn.|
|Nate Hoeft||Concordia||So.||SS||Marshall, Minn.|
|Sam Horner||Bethel||So.||OF||Woodbury, Minn. / New Life Academy|
|Jacob Kari||Augsburg||Jr.||P||North Branch, Minn.|
|Bob Kinne||Saint Mary's||Sr.||OF||St. Paul, Minn.|
|Casey Lewandoski||Gustavus||Jr.||P||Faribanks, Alaska / West Valley|
|Josh Marlowe||Augsburg||Sr.||1B||North St. Paul, Minn.|
|Bryce Marquardt||Bethel||Sr.||OF||Champlin, Minn. / Champlin Park|
|Jake Mathison||St. Olaf||Jr.||P/IF||Northfield, Minn.|
|Drew Molin||St. Thomas||Jr.||P||Cottage Grove, Minn. / East Ridge|
|Jacob Picht||Hamline||Sr.||1B||Oakdale, Minn. / Tartan|
|Matthew Plisko||Macalester||Fr.||P||Alpharetta, Ga. / Pace Academy|
|Cody Rahman||Concordia||Sr.||P||Moorhead, Minn.|
|Sam Schneider||St. Thomas||Fr.||3B||Savage, Minn. / Burnsville|
|Joe Setrum||Hamline||Sr.||C/OF||Clear Lake, Minn. / St. Cloud Tech|
|Jake Smith||St. Thomas||Jr.||OF||Apple Valley, Minn.|
|Quentin Stuart||Macalester||Sr.||2B||Nashville, Ind. / Indiana Academy|
|Josh Thorp||St. Thomas||Fr.||OF||Plymouth, Minn. / Armstrong|
|Wyatt Ulrich||Saint John's||Fr.||OF||Indus, Minn. / International Falls
|Ryan Zimmerman||St. Thomas||Jr.||P||Eden Prairie, Minn.|
2017 MIAC BASEBALL ALL-DEFENSIVE TEAM
|Jordan DeCroock||Augsburg||Jr.||OF||Farmington, Minn.|
|John Horner||Bethel||Jr.||2B||Woodbury, Minn. / New Life Academy|
|Max Jackson||Saint John's||So.||OF||St. Paul, Minn. / Cretin-Derham Hall|
|Alex Kendall||Saint John's||Sr.||P||St. Cloud, Minn. / Saint John's Prep|
|Graham Low||Macalester||So.||C||Piedmont, Calif.|
|Bryce Marquardt||Bethel||Sr.||OF||Champlin, Minn. / Champlin Park|
|Bret Neuville||Bethel||Sr.||1B||Green Bay, Wis. / Bay Port|
|Cody Rahman||Concordia||Sr.||3B||Moorhead, Minn.|
|Joe Seegers||Saint Mary's||Jr.||SS||Oconomowoc, Wis.|
2017 BASEBALL ALL-MIAC SPORTSMANSHIP TEAM
Augsburg - Tyler Buescher (Sr., Prior Lake, Minn.)
Bethel - Mitch Fredrickson (Sr., Arden Hills, Minn. / Mounds View)
Carleton - Willie Freimuth (Sr., Waunakee, Wis.)
Concordia - Joe Hallock (Sr., Fargo, N.D. / Fargo Shanley)
Gustavus - Logan Thomas (Sr., Lake City, Minn.)
Hamline - Dom Dandrea (Sr., St. Paul, Minn. / Cretin-Derham Hall)
Macalester - Alex Dash (Sr., New York, N.Y. / Columbia Grammar & Prep)
Saint John's - Derek Schiebel (Sr., Apple Valley, Minn. / Eastview)
Saint Mary's - Connor Christenson (Sr., Lakeville, Minn. / Lakeview North)
St. Olaf - Ryan Iverson (Sr., Montgomery, Minn.)
St. Thomas - Dylan Valentyn (Sr., Fairbault, Minn. / Bethlehem Academy)