Saturday, December 29, 2012

Catamount Athletics Year in Review: #7

Catamount Athletics Year in Review #7 - Trio of Baseball Catamounts Named All-Southern Conference

Five Catamount baseball players were honored by the Southern Conference as selection in the coaches' all-conference teams for 2012. Senior Ross Heffley and junior reliever Preston Hatcher captured first team All-SoCon honors with rookie DH Jacob Hoyle landing on the second team. Hoyle and classmates Jeremy Null and Bradley Strong were all named to the SoCon's All-Freshman team. 

Heffley started all 54 games during the regular season, finishing with 26 multiple hit and 12 multiple RBI games. He had 21 extra base hits including 12 doubles and a team-high eight home runs among his team-leading 78 hits on the year - a mark that ranked him fifth in the SoCon.

Taking over as the Catamount closer in 2012, Preston Hatcher turned in a career-best season. Hatcher's  6-1 overall record - matched the team lead in seasonal wins including three in league play - with 10 saves through regular season play, tying him for second in the SoCon. Hatcher also ranks tied for second in the WCU record books with 10 saves. It also ranks him seventh on the school's career charts, tied with Derrick Hawk (2003-05).

Hoyle earned second team plaudits in addition to his All-Freshman team nod, paced WCU with 45 RBI during the regular season, tied for eighth in the SoCon. He saw action in 50 of the 54 games while making 46 appearances among the starting lineup as a rookie.

Third baseman Bradley Strong and starting pitcher Jeremy Null were also named to the All-Freshman team. Strong overcame a sluggish start at the plate to hit .300 as a true freshman - an average that was bolstered by a .333 batting average in SoCon play, third on the squad. Null was thrust into a weekend starting role right out of the gates as a freshman with 14 of his 16 appearances in the regular season coming as a starter. He finished the season with a 5.16 overall ERA and a 4-4 record, tossing 68 innings with 60 strikeouts against 26 walks, limiting foes to a .269 batting average.

Purple & Gold's Year in Review Top 10:
10.  WCU's 2012 Football Season
9. The 2012 WCU Athletic Hall of Fame Class
8. Foster Tabbed First Team All-Southern Conference

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