Blakes lead baseball award winners
BROOKINGS, S.D. - Seniors Joel Blake and Blake Treinen lead the South Dakota State University postseason baseball team award winners based on a vote by players and coaches.
A native of Langley, British Columbia, Blake received the Billy McMacken Most Valuable Player Award and the Dean Krogman Captains Award after leading the team with a .374 batting average and 16 doubles. Blake finished his career as the all-time Jackrabbit leader with 70 doubles and second in career hits with 262.
Treinen, a native of Osage City, Kan., was honored as the team's top pitcher, earning the Trevor Schulte Most Outstanding Pitcher Award after compiling a 7-3 record, 3.00 earned run average and 84 strikeouts in 84 innings of work. Earlier this month, he was selected in the seventh round of the Major League Baseball Draft by the Oakland Athletics.
Junior Andrew Phelan and senior Erik DeJong also received a pair of awards. Phelan earned both the Ed Maras Newcomer of the Year Award and Cole Irish Mr. Hustle Award. A transfer from Garden City Community College, Phelan batted .333 with two home runs and 27 runs batted in while settling into a regular starting role in the outfield. The Littleton, Colo., native led the team with six stolen bases in seven attempts.
DeJong, who filled roles as a setup reliever and backup corner infielder, was the recipient of both the Doug Sehr Coaches Award and the Dave Manke Captains Award. A Sioux Falls native, DeJong was 3-0 on the mound and added a home run and six runs batted in as he saw limited action in the field.
Senior closer Trever Vermeulen was honored with the Gary Olechoski Fireman Award for the third consecutive season after tying the SDSU single season record with 10 saves and setting the Jackrabbit career mark with 23. Overall in 2011, Vermeulen posted a 2-5 record, a 2.98 ERA and notched 56 strikeouts in 51.1 innings.
Right-handed pitcher Kolton Emery was named the winner of the Jim Langer Freshman of the Year Award after sharing the team lead for wins. A native of Black Hawk, Emery compiled a 7-1 record with a 5.09 ERA.
Rounding out the team award winners were Jesse Sawyer as the recipient of the Greg Geary Big Stick Award and Beau Hanowski, who was honored with the David Lane Gold Glove Award. A senior third baseman from Calgary, Alberta, Sawyer led the team in home runs for the third consecutive year, clubbing 12 round-trippers to up his Jackrabbit-best career total to 50.
Hanowski helped anchor the Jackrabbit defense from his left field position, while contributing a .349 batting average in 54 games.
The Jackrabbits, coached by Ritchie Price, ended the 2011 season with a 37-20 overall record. SDSU finished second in the Summit League regular season race with a 20-8 mark and advanced to the postseason tournament championship for the third year in a row.