Earlham Quakers Chosen to Repeat as HCAC Baseball Champs

Earlham Quakers Chosen to Repeat as HCAC Baseball Champs

GREENWOOD, Ind. – The Earlham College Quakers baseball team has been selected as the favorite to claim the 2018 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference baseball championship.  The Quakers received 93 total points and six first place votes in the annual HCAC Preseason Coaches' Poll. 

The poll collects votes from all ten head coaches in the HCAC.  Manchester University received the second most votes in the poll and finished with 81 total points. Franklin College finished third in the poll with 79 points and three first place votes and was followed by Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology which claimed 68 points. Mount St. Joseph University (67), Transylvania University (36), Anderson University (34, one first place vote), Bluffton University (32), Defiance College (31), and Hanover College (29) rounded out the poll. 

Earlham will be looking for the school's second HCAC baseball title this spring. The Quakers finished first in the HCAC standings during the 2017 season with a 21-6 conference mark. Earlham ended their season in the third game of the NCAA Regional with a 5-0 loss to Cortland St.

The Quakers return the 2016 HCAC Freshman of the Year and one All-HCAC selection from last season's team. Junior pitcher Walter Talcott (Lafayette, Ind. / McCutcheon) posted an ERA of 2.60 and struck out 26 batters in 27.2 innings of work last season. The Quakers also return All-HCAC Honorable Mention pick Kyle Gorman (Cincinnati, Ohio / Oak Hills) from last year's squad. The sophomore pitcher started 11 games with 46 strikeouts and a 3.74 ERA in 74.2 innings.

Manchester University will be looking for the school's fifth HCAC baseball title this spring.  The Spartans finished second in the conference standings in 2017, earning an 18-9 league record.  Manchester ended their season with a loss to Mount St. Joseph in the conference tournament and finished 22-21 overall. 

The Spartans return one All-HCAC first-team selection and HCAC Freshman of the Year to the lineup. Sophomore designated hitter Joe Gallatin (Muncie, Ind. / Muncie Central) finished the season with 46 RBI, 26 runs, and a .358 batting average. Manchester also returns four All-HCAC second-team picks from last year's team.

Franklin College is predicted to finish third and finished fifth in the standings a year ago with a 13-12 league record, finishing the season 21-17 overall. The Grizzlies return two All-HCAC first-team members from last season's team.  Junior short stop Sam Claycamp (Columbus, Ind. / Columbus East) hit .347 wtih 45 runs scored, 34 RBI, and 17 doubles last spring, and junior pitcher Jordan Clark (Connersville, Ind. / Connersville) tallied 80 strikeouts in 70.1 innings with a 2.82 earned run average.

The 2018 baseball season opens on February 17th.  The HCAC portion of the schedule will begin on March 30 with the HCAC Tournament slated for May 10-12.
 

2018 Baseball Players to Watch

Anderson     John Becker     Sr.     P     Ubana, Ill.
      Jacob Morgan           C     Harrison, Ohio
      Nick Butcher     Sr.     SS     New Palestine, Ind.
      Seth Eldridge     Sr.     P     Cutler, Ind.
                         
Bluffton     Brantley Curnutte     Jr.     RHP     Hilliard, Ohio
      Chase Lawniczak     So.     SS     Toledo, Ohio
      Colin Gregory     Jr.     OF     Clyde, Ohio
      Ryan Golden     Sr.     DH     Findlay, Ohio
      Dante D'Andrea     Jr.     RHP     Westerville, Ohio
                         
Defiance     Paris Creek     Jr.     P     Bryan, Ohio
      Michael Gilliland     Jr.     SS     Napoleon, Ohio
      Glen Collier     Sr.     IF     Zionsville, Ind.
                         
Earlham     Walter Talcott     Jr.     RHP     Lafayette, Ind.
      Kyle Gorman     So.     RHP     Cincinnati, Ohio
      Danny Dopp     So.     INF/C     South Haven, Mich.
      Kendal Baker     Sr.     OF     Richmond, Ind.
      Isaiah Shake     So.     OF     Bloomington, Ind.
                         
Franklin     Sam Claycamp     Jr.     SS     Columbus, Ind.
      Nick Wright     So.     1B     Bloomington, Ind.
      Jordan Clark     Jr.     RHP     Connersville, Ind.
      Jackson Freed     Sr.     C     Westfield, Ind.
      Mitch Caster     Sr.     RHP     Greenwood, Ind.
                         
Hanover     Jack Shine     Sr.     SS     New Albany, Ind.
      Tyler Fitch     Jr.     C     Crestwood, Ky.
      David Herrmann     Jr.     P     Fishers, Ind.
      Ty Stover     Jr.     1B     Galveston, Ind.
                         
Manchester     Tyler LaFollette     Jr.     OF     Warsaw, Ind.
      Eric Knepper     Sr.     OF     Breman, Ind.
      Brandon Eck     Sr.     P     Fort Wayne, Ind.
      Taylor Kopplin     Sr.     P     Westport, Ind.
      Steve Pinarski     Sr.     P     Goshen, Ind.
                         
Mount St. Joseph     Alex Wagner     Jr.     RHP     West Chester, Ohio
      Nate Hunter     Sr.     OF     Vevay, Ind.
      Wyatt Myers     Jr.     LHP     Waynesville, Ohio
      Simon Schaefer     Jr.     INF     Cincinnati, Ohio
      Roman Rothwell     So.     INF     Monroe, Ohio
                         
Rose-Hulman     David Burnside     Jr.     OF     Northbrook, Ill.
      Conner Shipley     Jr.     SS     Terre Haute, Ind.
      Ian Grant     Sr.     LHP     Liberyville, Ill.
      Ryan Stachowski     So.     1B     Saint Joseph, Mich.
      Brian Thomas     Jr.     DH     St. Louis, Mo.
                         
Transylvania     Cole Ratliff     So.     C     Hazard, Ky.
      Jared Williams     Sr.     SS     Burlington, Ky.
      Taylor Henley     Sr.     1B     Lexington, Ky.
      Austin Butts     So.     P/OF     Woodstock, Ill.
      Isaac Taylor     Jr.     OF     Lexington, Ky.