Tag: College Baseball

Noontime’s Senior Salute: Joey Rogers (UMass Boston)

Joey Rogers started 23 games for the UMass Boston baseball team from 2017 to 2020. (PHOTO COURTESY: UMass Boston Athletics)

By NoontimeSports.com 

Joey Rogers cherished every moment with the UMass Boston baseball team.

From his initial season with the Beacons in 2017 to just a handful of games earlier this year, the Dighton, Massachusetts native says he will look back fondly on his time with the Blue and White, which averaged 37 wins from 2017 to 2019.

“I will cherish all of the time and hard work we put in as a team during the offseason,” said Rogers, who appeared in 31 games with the Beacons.

“We pushed each other every single day in the weight room and on the field to get better, and ultimately achieve another championship.”

Rogers and the Beacons won quite a few championships these past few years. In fact, they won a trio of Little East Conference (LEC) Tournament titles while making a pair of appearances in the D-III College World Series (2017 and 2019).

The left-handed pitcher won ten games for the Beacons while recording 111 strikeouts. He concluded his career with a 3.90 earned run average and made 55 plate appearances where he recorded eight runs nine hits, one home run, and six RBI.

We recently spoke with Rogers to discuss his career and time spent with the UMass Boston baseball team, as well as where he is headed after graduation later this spring.

Was there a game (or two) that you will remember most from either your senior season or the past three years?  If so, which games are they?

Winning the NCAA D-III Super Regional Championship during my junior year. The atmosphere during the three-game series was unreal. We had so much support from friends and family, and it was very special to win a championship in front of them while sharing a very cool moment with my teammates.

Also, I will always remember winning the New England D-III Regional Championship my first season with the Beacons. Again, it was another memorable moment for my teammates and me. We competed for the title on Cape Cod against some of the best teams in New England. 

Both wins sent us to the College World Series, which were played at different locations. But being able to compete on the national stage was unbelievable.

What have you enjoyed most about competing for the UMass Boston baseball program these past four years?  What will you miss most after graduation?

I am grateful for the opportunity that Coach (Brendan) Eygabroat has given me. I’ll cherish the time spent with this program for the rest of my life. I’ll also look back fondly on time spent with teammates, both on and off the field.

The relationships that I built, along with the team chemistry we established was a big part of our success. I will miss running out on that field after graduation, but I am so happy I got to play a game I absolutely love for the past four years.

Do you hope to stay involved with your sport in the future? Any interest in being a coach?

I am planning to pursue a career in the United States Army as an officer after graduation, but I could see myself coaching this game I love in the future.

Tell me about your major.  How did you choose it and what do you plan to do with it after graduation?

I majored in exercise and health science because I have always been interested in athletics and sports from a young age. I also like helping others achieve their fitness goals, which is something that interested me in studying this particular topic.

I have been fortunate to gain a slew of real-life experience these past four years through internships with Geoff Ebbs, who is our athletic department’s strength and conditioning coach. The internship taught me so much in regard to exercise science to programming as well as coaching and teaching athletes proper techniques.

Following graduation, I will be joining the United States Army – I was accepted into the Officer Candidate School.

Comei’s 5-for-5 Day Sends WPI Past Nichols For Fourth-Straight Win

Nick Comei
WPI’s Nick Comei went 5-for-5 on Tuesday as the Engineers defeated Nichols College in non-conference action. (PHOTO CREDIT: WPI Athletics)

By Matt Noonan (@MattNoonan11) 

WPI senior Nick Comei enjoyed his best game of the 2017 season thus far, going 5-for-5 this afternoon as the Engineers defeated Nichols, 11-7, en route to their fourth-straight victory.

The Haverhill, Massachusetts native smacked a season-best five hits, while recording a trio of runs for the second consecutive contest. Additionally, he recorded a pair of doubles – it was the second time Comei reached second base twice in a game this season – while hitting his third home run of the season, too.

Comei also drove in a season-best four runs – he has now recorded 18 RBI, which is good for second on the squad. Sophomore Steven Gallagher leads the Engineers with 21 RBI.

WPI led, 3-1, after the opening frame before pushing ahead 6-1 after two innings of play. Comei tallied his initial RBI of the contest in the bottom of the second, driving home sophomore Ryan Tropeano. He would record three more RBI before the contest concluded.

The Engineers return to the diamond on Friday when they host Brandeis University before hopping into New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) play with a Saturday double-header against Wheaton College. The first game of the double-header is scheduled to begin at 12 p.m.

After a pair of games with the Lyons, WPI will close out the month with back-to-back home dates against Emerson College (Mar. 28th) and Fitchburg State (Mar. 30th).

Salem State’s Fecteau Highlights 2015 Futures Collegiate Baseball League All-Star Game

By Matt Noonan

LYNN, Mass. – Salem State University’s Richard Fecteau highlighted an exciting Futures Collegiate Baseball League (FCBl) All-Star Game on Tuesday evening at Frasier Field, driving home Stonehill College’s Brian Campbell for the game-winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning that lifted the Eastern All-Stars over the Western All-Stars, 4-3.

With the score tied, 3-3, heading into the final half frame, Campbell, who pinched-hit for University of Hartford sophomore Erik Ostberg, reached first base after slicing a pitch by University of Maine pitcher Charlie Butler down the leftfield line. Campbell advanced to second base during his team’s next at-bat before reaching third following a fly-out to right field by Williams College junior Jack Roberts.

Campbell would cross home plate during his team’s next at-bat as Fecteau connected on a 3-2 pitch down the right field line that initiated an enormous celebration by the Eastern All-Stars.

“When I got down 0-2, I figured – I just looked straight for fastballs and adjusted (for pitches that were) off-speed. (Butler) threw a couple fastballs that were tough in spots and I tried to get a piece of them and hopefully hang in there,” Fecteau said of his final at-bat. “(His) final pitch was a curveball, so I just tried to sit back and get something – get a good piece on it.”

Fecteau, who competes for the North Shore Navigators in the FCBL, concluded the All-Star Game with trio of at-bats, but just one hit and one RBI.

“(When Jack Roberts) moved (Campbell) over to third base, I was like ‘alright, here’s my shot. I guess I have to take advantage of it’ and I went out and tried to do as best (as I could during my final at-bat),” said Fecteau.

The East and West teams swapped leads throughout the opening innings before St. Thomas Aquinas junior Brandon Fischer pushed the hosts (Eastern All-Stars) ahead, 3-2, in the bottom of the fifth after racing home from third base during an infield ground-out by University of Maine junior Tyler Schwanz.

In the top of the sixth, St. Mary’s senior Davis Strong evened the score with a solo home run to left field, but that would be the West’s final run of the evening.

Three innings later, Fecteau secured the win, providing the East with its first win since the league switched from New England vs. Massachusetts last season. The West captured the initial East-West battle last year with a 4-1 victory.

Mass. College Baseball: Wheaton’s Gibbons Signs With New York Mets

By NoontimeSports.com 

Wheaton College rising senior Mike Gibbons signed a free agent contract with the New York Mets of Major League Baseball (MLB) for the 2015 season, as announced in a release this afternoon (which we’ve provided below). The release is courtesy of Wheaton College’s sports information office:

NORTON, Mass. – Wheaton College rising senior and right-handed pitcher Mike Gibbons (Simsbury, Conn./Avon Old Farms) has signed a free agent contract with the New York Mets of Major League Baseball (MLB) for the 2015 season.

“It’s difficult to find the words to match the current emotions that I am feeling from signing with the New York Mets. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity, and something I have always dreamed about. I am ecstatic to be able to represent Wheaton College and Wheaton’s baseball program at the professional level,” said Gibbons. “Coach [Eric] Podbelski and coach [Ryan] Parker have helped mold me into becoming the pitcher that I am today, and I am grateful to have played under them for three years at Wheaton. My family has given me the love and support to achieve my goals, and the ability to attend a college with superb academics and athletics.”

Last season, Gibbons appeared in 12 games (nine starts) and posted a 4-1 record with a 1.89 earned run average (ERA) alongside 37 strikeouts in 57 innings pitched. Gibbons also held opponents to a .203 batting average and induced an 11.84 groundouts per game ratio. Overall in his Wheaton career, Gibbons compiled a 9-3 record for the Lyons and a 2.63 ERA through 106 innings of work.

“I’m really happy for Mike, and while we’ll certainly miss his contributions, I know that this represents an opportunity that is very difficult to pass up,” said Wheaton College baseball head coach Eric Podbelski. “I told Mike when this started to develop that he had our full support and to concentrate on making the choice that was right for him.”

“Mike’s talent and further potential is obvious. He has come so far since he first arrived, making big leaps in his development each year. That is a testament, first of all to his natural ability, but also to his determination to keep getting better. Nothing has been handed to Mike, he has earned every inning that he has pitched at Wheaton and has gotten significantly better as a result.”

This summer, Gibbons shined for the Torrington Titans of the Futures Collegiate Baseball League (FCBL) going 4-2 with 59 strikeouts – ranked third best in the league – in 50 2/3 innings pitched. Gibbons also held opponents to a .240 batting average, posted a 1.26 WHIP, a 10.48 strikeout per nine innings ratio and fanned a season-high 11 batters in two different games for the Titans.

“In the offseason this past winter, I worked hard to gain strength and stamina to help my pitching ability and I think it carried through this summer. I continued to work out and follow a regime to give my body the foundation to throw well. I gained a decent amount of velocity in the summer thanks to the regime I was following and becoming more fluid throughout my pitching delivery,” explained Gibbons. “Early on, I was not getting the results I wanted even though I felt like my stuff was pretty good, so I just kept persisting and looking forward to the next start and just trying to have a quality outing. At the end of the season, I started to string along quality starts which built up my confidence and allowed me to throw more aggressively. There are obviously things that I still need to work on, but that is the beauty of baseball and sports in general, because you can always improve and that’s what drives me.”

Gibbons joins Chris Denorfia ’02 and Jamie Baker ’06 as the only Wheaton student-athletes to sign with an MLB team in the program’s 17-year varsity existence. Denorfia was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the 19th round of the MLB amateur draft in June 2002 and currently plays for the Seattle Mariners, while Baker inked a deal with the San Diego Padres in September 2006 after completing his first year of professional baseball with the Canadian-American Association of Professional Baseball’s Nashua Pride.

Gibbons also becomes the eighth student-athlete in program history to sign a professional contract to play baseball, joining Mark Brown ’06Chris Martin ’06Adam Laplante ’07Chris McDonough ’08 and Jon Shepard ’10 and the aforementioned Denorfia and Baker on the list. In addition, among all eight student-athletes to sign a professional baseball contract, Gibbons is the first to be offered, and sign, a professional contract before his senior season.

“It’s further proof that if a young man chooses Wheaton as the place to further his academic and baseball career, and if you truly have the ability, you will not go unnoticed,” stated Podbelski. “You don’t choose Wheaton to ‘get drafted,’ you choose it for the whole package – the academics, the community feel in and out of the classroom, the beautiful campus and the chance to be part of a traditionally successful baseball program.”

“That said, it doesn’t hurt that we have some concrete examples which show that you can develop here and be noticed. For the majority who don’t get the opportunity, they walk away with a great education and four years’ worth of great memories, having played the sport they love at a highly competitive collegiate level.”

Wheaton advanced to the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Tournament championship game for the 14th time in the 16-year history of the league after claiming its 15th NEWMAC regular season title in 2014. The Lyons also produced a 27-16-1 record which marks their 15th season in program history with 25 or more wins.

Mass. College Baseball: Nichols Adds Three To Coaching Staff

By NoontimeSports.com 

Courtesy of the Nichols College sports information department, here’s this afternoon’s release about the Bison’s baseball team adding three coaches to its staff:

DUDLEY, Mass. – Nichols College head baseball coach Nick Puccio has announced the additions of Dan Haugh, Casey Cummings, and Pat Redmond to his coaching staff.

Haugh comes to Nichols following a standout four-year playing career at Wheaton (MA) College which culminated in an appearance in the 2012 College World Series (CWS) National Championship game. He is No. 1 in Lyons program history in doubles (61) and sac flies (19), No. 2 in RBI (189), and No. 3 in games played (178), at bats (686), and total bases (362).

Haugh helped the Lyons capture three-consecutive New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Championships (2010-12) and, subsequently, appear in three NCAA Regionals (2010-12). The 2009 NEWMAC Rookie of the Year, Haugh was later named the 2010 NEWMAC Player of the Year and was a Second Team All-America selection by D3baseball.com in 2011. Haugh was a D3baseball.com Preseason All-America First Team selection as a senior.

“We’re really excited to add Dan to the coaching staff,” said first-year head coach Nick Puccio, who coached Haugh during his time at Wheaton. “He was a great player and an All-American who carries the same values and mindset that both Hal (Landers) and I bring with us from Wheaton. He’ll work primarily with our infielders.”

Cummings founded the club baseball team at Merrimack College and managed the team’s budget, practice, and game schedule. He has previous coaching stints at West Boylston Post 204 Legion Baseball (2010), Central Mass. Thunder AAU Baseball (2011-12), and Saint John’s H.S. (2009-13). He has worked at both 108 Stitches Baseball Camp and Double Play Sports & Fitness since February, 2013. Cummings received his Bachelor of Liberal Arts from Merrimack in 2012 and currently teaches social studies at Venerini Academy.

“Casey will be our pitching guy,” said Puccio. “He did a great job at Saint John’s over the last few years. He’s a young, enthusiastic coach looking to make a name for himself in this profession. He’s brings a lot to the table and we’re excited to have him.”

Redmond spent the last two years as a coach at both Saint Mary’s H.S. in Worcester and the Main South American Legion team. He is a 2003 graduate of Shepherd Hill Regional H.S. who went on to play baseball at MCLA in North Adams, Mass., where he was also a member of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC).

“Pat coached at Saint Mary’s the last few years, and everybody that I talk to says he’s a great catching guy,” said Puccio. “We’re so keen on player development, and having these guys – Dan with the infielders, Hal with the outfielders, Pat with the catchers, Casey and I with the staff, and all of us contributing on offense – allows us to provide the individual attention our student-athletes need to reach their full potential.”

The Bison open the 2014 season on March 14 against Baldwin Wallace at the Snowbird Classic in Port Charlotte, Fla.