NEW YORK – Members of the Columbia baseball team stayed busy this summer, playing in various collegiate leagues throughout the country. Here’s a look at how the Lions’ and their teams fared.
Senior Joey Falcone led the ABCCL with seven home runs and batted .330 with 23 RBI to guide the Monmouth Monarchs win the league championship. Falcone drove in a run in both games of Monmouth’s sweep of the Medford Starz in the championship series and was selected to the ABCCL All-Star team.
The duo of juniors Nick Maguire and George Thanopoulos won the California Collegiate League Championship with the Los Angeles Brewers. Maguire was red-hot at the plate, boasting a .307 batting average, and led the club with six dingers and 35 RBI, to earn a spot on the CCL All-League and All-South Division teams. In the championship series, the first went 4-for-8 in a sweep over Neptune Beach. Thanopoulos pitched in seven games, recording a 4-1 record to go with a 3.12 ERA and 33 strikeouts.
Junior Willis Robbins and sophomores Will Savage and Kyle Bartleman teamed up with the Shelter Island Bucks in the Hamptons League where they reached the championship series. Robbins made 16 relief appearances and pitched to a 2.41 ERA and earned a save in 22.1 innings. Savage, the reigning Ivy League Blair Bat winner, made the all-star team and batted .253 with a team-high 21 stolen bases. Bartleman hit .290 with six RBI in 21 games with the Bucks.
Senior Gus Craig ventured to central New York to play with the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League. The left-handed outfielder hit .245 with four home runs, 21 RBI and 13 stolen bases in 40 games to help the DiamondDawgs reach the playoffs with a 26-19 regular season record.
Staying in the Perfect Game League, junior Logan Boyher saw action in 37 games, working primarily behind the plate for the Newark Pilots, who reached the championship series.
The other two-thirds of the Columbia outfield, senior Jordan Serena and junior Robb Paller, were in Ontario, Canada, playing for the Thunder Bay Border Cats of the Northwoods League. Serena notched a .286 batting average with eight doubles, three homers, 30 RBI and 17 steals. Paller compiled a team-high 47 RBI to go with a .274 batting average and nine HR.
A pair of pitchers also saw action in the Northwoods League for the La Crosse Loggers. Junior Kevin Roy made nine starts, going 3-2 with a 3.73 ERA and 47 strikeouts in 50.2 innings of work. Senior Adam Cline took the hill 12 times, making 10 starts. Like Roy, Cline won three games and struck out 44 in 52.2 innings.
Senior hurler Mike Weisman was superb out of the bullpen for the North Shore Navigators of the Futures Collegiate League, picking up two wins, 25 strikeouts and a 2.52 ERA in 25 innings. The senior southpaw held opponents scoreless in nine of his last 10 outings during the season and led the team in appearances.
Four players represented the Lions in the New England Collegiate Baseball League.
Junior pitcher Thomas Crispi went 2-0 in 22.1 innings, striking out 26 batters to go with a 3.62 ERA for the Plymouth Pilgrims. Plymouth posted a 31-11 regular season record and reached the divisional finals in the playoffs.
Sophomore Ryan Marks took the ball seven times, making two starts with a 3.73 ERA and fanning 15 batters in 21.2 innings. He did not allow a run in four of his seven outings.
Rounding out the bunch was sophomore Ty Wiest, who went 1-0 with a 1.74 ERA, pitching in nine games total with three starts for the Vermont Mountaineers. He fanned 22 batters in 31 innings and helped his team reach the playoffs. Junior infielder John Kinne also saw action in 19 games with the North Adams SteepleCats.
Sophomore infielder Shane Adams played in 35 games with the Woodlands Strykers of the Texas Collegiate League and posted a .383 on base percentage.
“I am proud of the effort our players continue to put in during the summer time,” head coach Brett Boretti said. “It means a lot to our program that these players put in the time and effort to play in some of the best leagues across the country to improve their game, which helps our program get better.”