Inside the Fowl Lines, Week 8
(Rochester, Minn.) – Many future Rochester Honkers are settling in nicely in conference, saving their best play for now. Ryan Thompson shut out #13 Michigan in two games. Fleek, Rua, and Hart all had monster weeks from the plate. Here’s a recap of the action:
Zach Stone (RHP) – UC-Davis (9-16)
Stone pitched the final two innings of UC Davis’ 7-6 win over Sacramento State on Tuesday. He held the Hornets scoreless on only one hit with three strikeouts. The Aggies scored the winning run in the ninth on a walk-off balk, giving stone his third win of the season.
Zach Stone versus Blake Workman – April 8, 2017
Stone also took on Blake Workman and the #8 Cal State Fullerton* on Saturday. With the game tied 6-6 in the seventh, Workman entered the game in relief. He shut down the Aggies with three consecutive strikeouts, but a drop third strike with two outs allowed the runner on third to score, giving UC Davis a one-run lead. Stone jumped in to pitch for the Aggies in the seventh as well. He held the Titans scoreless in the seventh and eighth innings. After UC Davis scored another run off Workman in the ninth inning, Fullerton scored three runs (two earned) in the ninth, giving Cal State Fullerton a 9-8 win.
Zach fell to a 3-2 record on the season with a 3.94 ERA in 11 games. UC Davis travels to Sacramento State tonight before a three-game series versus Cal Poly this weekend.
Blake rose to a 4-1 record with the win with a 2.00 ERA. He has appeared in 12 games, lasting 27.0 innings. Workman has 30 strikeouts with only five walks. Cal State Fullerton (21-10) travels to USC on Thursday before hosting the Trojans for two games over the weekend.
Chris Ceballos (C) – #2 Orange Coast College+ (25-5)
The Orange Coast catcher doubled and scored a run, a part of a 16-5 rout of Fullerton College on Thursday. The Pirates traveled to Fulleton on Saturday where Ceballos stole the show. Down 0-3 in the top of the sixth inning, Chris hit a three-run home run (second on the season) to tie the game at three. He also walked twice in a 6-4 win. Ceballos is hitting .229 in 25 games. He has scored seven times with nine RBIs and two stolen bases. Orange Coast heads on the road this week with games at Oxnard, Santa Barbara, and Ventura.
Brad Pluschkell (INF) – UC-Davis (9-16)
Pluschkell played third base for UC Davis this week. After going 1-for-5 on Saturday, Brad hit his first home run of the season, a solo shot, but the Aggies dropped the game 5-8. Pluschkell is hitting .188 in 25 games. He has 16 hits, six runs, and six RBIs.
Mike Echavia (OF) – Nevada (9-24)
Echavia played a big part in the Wolfpack’s 3-1 extra-inning win over San Diego State on Saturday. Tied 1-1 in the top of the 11th, Mike led off the inning with a single to left field. With one out, Nevada’s first baseman Dillan Shrum homered, scoring Echavia and giving Nevada the lead. Echavia drove in two runs on three hits in the week. Nevada travels to UC Santa Barbara later today before a home series against future Honker Josh Nashed and San Jose State.
Drew Slade (LHP) – Ripon (5-16)
Slade came out of the bullpen for the Red Hawks on Wednesday against the #4 UW-Whitewater^. He threw the final inning in an 8-9 loss to the Warhawks, pitching a scoreless frame on one hit. Drew was called to start against St. Norbert College on Saturday on only two days’ rest. He did not fare as well, surrendering seven runs (four earned) on eight hits in 1.2 innings. Slade is 0-0 with a 6.75 ERA in six games with 18 strikeouts. Ripon hosts UW-Oshkosh later today and Marian University on Thursday.
Johnathan Fleek (INF) – Western Illinois (9-20)
Johnathan picked a hit and a RBI in each of Western Illinois’ four games this week, extending his hitting streak to five. In an 11-10 win over Nebraska-Omaha, Fleek went 2-for-4 including a RBI single and a run in the sixth inning. He also was hit by a pitch and stole a base in the win. Johnathan went a combined 7-for-16 (.438) with four RBIs in the week. The Fighting Leathernecks travel to Iowa later tonight before three games versus South Dakota State this weekend.
Rees Rua (OF) – Lake Erie (8-21)
The Lake Erie center fielder had a monster game in a 13-10 win over the University of Charleston on Wednesday. Rua went scored four runs and drove in three runs on two hits. Rees was one of three with multiple hits and one of two with at least four runs scored in the game. He is fifth on the team with a .310 batting average in 23 games. Rua has cracked out five doubles, bringing in nine runs, scoring 14 himself. Lake Erie College hosts Gannon later today before games against Tiffin and Grand Valley State (Mich.) this week.
Kenyon Yovan (RHP/INF) – Oregon
The Ducks’ closer picked up his PAC-12 best 11th save of the season this week. In Saturday’s 6-3 win over future Honker Konnor Zickefoose and UC Irvine, Kenyon pitched the final 1.2 innings of the game without surrendering a run or a hit with one strikeout. The save moved the freshman to a tie for fifth on Oregon’s single season save record. Yovan is 1-0 on the season with a perfect 0.00 ERA in 17.2 innings. He has 22 strikeouts with only two walks. Oregon hosts Portland tonight before a road series against future Honker Shane Martinez and #7 Arizona this weekend.
Jordan Hart (OF) – #21 Minn. State Mankato> (24-5)
Hart collected a hit in each of the nationally-ranked Mavericks’ six games this week. He also scored a run five of them. In game two of a doubleheader Wednesday versus Concordia-St. Paul, Hart went 2-for-3 including a two-run home run in the sixth. He finished with two runs and four RBIS. That was one of three multi-hit games for Jordan over the week. Hart went 10-for-22 (.455) with eight runs, six RBIs, a home run, and three walks. Minnesota State hosts Sioux Falls for a doubleheader later today and then St. Cloud State for four games this weekend.
Highlight Player of the Week
Ryan Thompson (RHP) – Illinois (11-18)
Thompson saved his best pitching for now and has been the highlight of the Illini bullpen. He appeared in a 5-3 win over Missouri as well as two games against #13 Michigan, holding his opponent scoreless in each game. Ryan went a career-long 3.1 innings versus the Wolverines on Sunday. Holding a 6-5 lead, he earned his second win of the season. Thompson pitched 7.1 consecutive scoreless innings with eight strikeouts during the streak. Ryan is 2-1 with a 6.33 ERA. Illinois travels to Illinois State tonight before a home series against Northwestern.
* Division 1 Rankings by D1baseball.com
> Division 2 Rankings by NCBWA
^ Division 3 Rankings by NCBWA/D3baseball.com
+ CCCAA (California Community College) Rankings by CCCSIA State Poll