CAA Honors Scalf As Coach-of-the-Year
Courtesy: UNCW Athletic Communications
HARRISONBURG, Va. - UNCW head coach Mark Scalf was named 2012 Colonial Athletic Association Coach-of-the-Year after guiding the Seahawks to their fifth regular season conference crown and the top seed in this week's conference championship.
The award marks the fifth time Scalf, who is in his 21st at the lead of the program, has been honored as the league's top skipper. After opening the season 3-9, UNCW went 32-10 the rest of the way, including an impressive 24-6 in the league. The 24 wins are the second most in conference history, trailing the 2008 Seahawks, who posted a 25-4-1 record.
Hofstra's Danny Poma was the league's Player-of-the-Year, Matt Davenport of William & Mary was the Pitcher-of-the-Year, Hofstra's Matt Ford was the Defensive Player-of-the-Year and Northeastern's Jason Vosler was the Rookie-of-the-Year. All voting was done by the league's 11 head coaches.
UNCW placed three on the league's first team, four on the second team, two on the third and two more on the all-rookie squad. The 11 players earning All-CAA honors is a program record, passing the total of nine from 2008.
Seniors Andrew Cain, Thomas Pope and Tyler McSwain were voted by the league's coaches to the first team. Cain batted .316 with nine home runs and 38 runs batted in while stealing 20 bases and scoring a team-high 50 runs. Pope led the Seahawks with a .374 average and 17 doubles. He swiped 15 bases and scored 42 runs. Pope's .576 slugging average and .443 on base averages also lead UNCW.
On the mound, McSwain led the staff with eight wins and posted a 3.17 ERA in a staff-leading 93.2 innings pitched. He became UNCW's career leader in CAA wins with 16 after topping William & Mary late in the season. In conference play, McSwain made 10 starts and went 7-1 with a 3.10 ERA.
The Seahawks dominated the infield on the second team as Hunter Ridge, Michael Bass, Jake Koenig and Matt Campbell earned those award spots. Ridge rebounded from a slow start to hit .329 with a team-leading 39 runs batted in. Bass, meanwhile, hit a career-high .323, stole 20 bases and fielded a staggering .979 in the field and tied for the circuit lead with 174 assists. At shortstop, Koening hit a career-high .293 with 11 doubles and two homers. He knocked in 28 runs and scored 34. Campbell, who was a second-team honoree in 2011, hit .289 overall with 12 doubles and 18 stolen bases.
Tyler Molinaro and Mat Batts were named to the third team. Molinaro enters the conference tournament leading the league with 14 homers, including nine in against CAA pitching. Batts compiled a 5-4 record and ranks in the league's top-five in ERA (2.65) and strikeouts (79). He went 5-1 versus the CAA.
Rounding out UNCW's award-winners were freshmen Jordan Ramsey and Corey Dick, who were named to the All-Rookie squad. Ramsey made 13 starts on the season and finished with a 4-2 record. In 62 innings, he posted a 3.92 ERA and held opponents to a .259 average.
The conference tournament begins on Wednesday, but the Seahawks won't play until noon on Thursday. The Seahawks will face the winner of the George Mason-VCU opening round game. Wilmington ESPN Radio affiliate WMFD AM630 will carry all of UNCW's postseason games. The games will also be streamed at CAAsports.com.