Patriot League Baseball Release - 4.2.13

Holy Cross' Jordan Enos

April 2, 2013

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CENTER VALLEY, Pa. -- Patriot League play is underway, with Navy and Holy Cross opening up with three wins on the first weekend.

The Mids went on the road to rival Army and came away with wins in each of the first three contests of the series before the Black Knights claimed the finale. Holy Cross lost the opener against Bucknell, but came back to take the next three games and claim the series.

Lehigh and Lafayette split the other opening series in Easton, leaving each team a game behind the Mids and Crusaders in the Patriot League standings.

Three more series are on tap for the upcoming weekend with Holy Cross at Lafayette, Army at Lehigh and Bucknell at Navy. Each four-game set will be played on Saturday and Sunday.

Before the League action resumes, each team will play at least one contest during the week. Holy Cross has won eight of its last nine games as it visits Hartford on Tuesday and Marist on Wednesday, while Navy has claimed nine of its last 11 going into Wednesday's matchup at Towson. Lehigh and Lafayette will each play games as part of the Liberty Classic on Tuesday, while Army, Bucknell and the Mountain Hawks are also in action on Wednesday.

Patriot League Twitter Notebook
*Navy and Holy Cross each opened 3-1 in Patriot League action.
*The Mids won three of four at rival and defending champion Army.
*Holy Cross won the last three games of its series with Bucknell.
*Lehigh and Lafayette split a series in Easton.
*The six teams combined to hit. 290 on the opening League weekend.
*There were nearly 12 runs scored per game in League contests.
*Holy Cross goes to Lafayette, Army is at Lehigh and Bucknell visits Navy in the upcoming weekend series.
*All six teams play at least one midweek game, with Holy Cross and Lehigh each having a pair on the schedule.
*Navy has won nine of its last 11 games overall.
*Holy Cross has won eight of its last nine contests.
*Army hosted the New York Yankees in an exhibition game Saturday.
*Holy Cross' Jordan Enos leads the League with a .387 batting average.
*Army has four players batting over .300 for the season.
*Navy's Ben Nelson leads the way with a 1.30 ERA for the season.

Patriot League Notebook

Navy, Holy Cross Start Off Strong
Navy and Holy Cross each made the Patriot League Tournament last season, and each are picked to finish in the top half in 2013. Both squads took a good first step towards accomplishing the mark again by winning three of four games on the opening Patriot League weekend. The Mids took the first three at rival Army before the Black Knights salvaged the finale, while the Crusaders won the last three at home against Bucknell to earn the series victory. Both teams are hot overall. Navy has won nine of its last 11 games, and had a five-game win streak snapped when the Black Knights won on Monday. Holy Cross has claimed eight of its last nine contests since a 2-13 start.

Bats Break Out on Opening Weekend
The hitters had the better of the play for the first set of Patriot League games. Lehigh (.325) and Navy (.319) each batted over .300 as a team, with Lafayette (.297) and Holy Cross (.294) just missing the mark. The six teams combined for a .290 average on the opening weekend with an average of nearly 12 combined runs scored per game. However, pitching proved decisive for the weekend's big winners as Holy Cross (3.38 ERA) and Navy (3.48) were the only teams with an ERA under 5.50 for the weekend.

What to Watch For
The next set of Patriot League action includes Holy Cross at Lafayette, Army at Lehigh and Bucknell at Navy in four-game series that will all be played on Saturday and Sunday. Each team will also play a non-League contest on Tuesday or Wednesday, with Holy Cross and Lehigh in action on both dates.

Army Draws Sellout Crowd to Exhibition with New York Yankees
More than 6,000 specators were on hand as Army squared off in an exhibition game with the New York Yankees on Saturday. The Yankees won the contest 10-5 at West Point as Army fell to 0-22 all-time against the Bronx Bombers. Mariano Rivera threw out one of the two first pitches, and Yankees players interacted with Army players throughout the game.

Navy's Nelson On a Tear
Navy senior Ben Nelson put together a fantastic season during the non-League portion of the schedule. Nelson is 5-1 on the season and leads the Patriot League in wins, ERA (1.30), innings (41.2) and strikeouts (45) while only walking four batters all season.

Army's Rowley, Holy Cross' Enos Named Senior CLASS Award Candidates
Army pitcher Chris Rowley and Holy Cross first baseman Jordan Enos have been selected as two of 30 candidates for the 2013 Baseball Senior CLASS Award. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition.

Rowley Earns Pair of Preseason All-America Honors
Coming off an All-America season, Army senior pitcher Chris Rowley garnered the same recognition in the preseason. Rowley was named a first-team pick by National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) and collected second-team laurels from Collegiate Baseball. Rowley went 11-1 with a microscopic 2.40 earned run average last season en route to earning three All-America certificates. He was honored by the NCBWA (second team), Collegiate Baseball newspaper (second team) and (honorable mention).

Holy Cross' Ahmed, Army's Rowley Take Top Individual Honors
Preseason individual awards were handed out for the first time, and again it was Holy Cross and Army leading the way. Holy Cross junior third baseman Mike Ahmed was named Patriot League Preseason Player of the Year, while Army senior starting pitcher Chris Rowley took home the Preseason Pitcher of the Year honor. Ahmed was a first-team All-Patriot League pick last season, while Rowley earned the Patriot League Pitcher of the Year award in 2012 while also being named an All-American by multiple outlets. For the full Preseason All-Patriot League Team, see the box on the left-hand sidebar of the page.

Patriot League Baseball Weekly Awards (March 25-April 1)

Player of the Week
JOE ABELN, LEHIGH Jr., C/DH, Allentown, Pa.
Abeln had an outstanding opening weekend in Patriot League action to help the Mountain Hawks to a split of their four-game series at rival Lafayette. He batted .615 (8-for-13) for the weekend with two doubles, a triple, three runs scored and seven RBIs in the four-game set. Abeln also walked five times to record a .722 on-base percentage for the weekend. He stood second among all players in batting average, on-base percentage and slugging on the opening League weekend, and tied for the top spot with seven RBIs and five walks. Abeln went 4-for-4 with a double, triple and four RBIs to help lead Lehigh to a 7-4 win in the series opener. He also went 2-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs as Lehigh capped the weekend with an 8-0 victory. Abeln batted .625 (10-of-16) in all games last week, including a 2-for-3 effort with a run and an RBI against Temple on Wednesday. He is named Patriot League Player of the Week for the first time, and is the third Mountain Hawk to claim the honor this year.

Pitcher of the Week
MIKE BURKE, LEHIGH Jr., P, Clarks Summit, Pa.
With Lehigh trying to gain a split of its four-game series with Lafayette, Burke tossed six scoreless innings to lift the Mountain Hawks to an 8-0 win in the series finale on Sunday. He scattered three hits and three walks while striking out three to pick up the victory. Burke was the only starting pitcher that did not give up a run on the opening Patriot League weekend. He is named Pitcher of the Week for the first time.

Rookie of the Week
CONNOR DENEEN, NAVY Fr., OF, Tustin, Calif.
Deneen went 6-for-9 with a run scored and five RBIs to help Navy win three of four games at rival Army to open Patriot League action. He started at designated hitter in the opener of each doubleheader, going 2-for-4 with two RBIs in a 7-1 win on Sunday and 2-for-2 with three RBIs and two walks in a 15-4 victory on Monday. Deneen also had a 2-for-3 outing with a run scored in a 14-7 loss on Monday. His start in game one of the series was just the third of his career and first as the designated hitter. Deneen wins the Patriot League Rookie of the Week award for the first time.

Honorable Mentions
GREG DUPELL, NAVY Sr., OF, Tampa, Fla.
Dupell went 10-for-22 with two home runs, nine RBIs and eight runs scored in five games last week.

JORDAN ENOS, HOLY CROSS Sr., 1B/C, Stockton, Calif.
Enos hit .562 (9-for-16) with five doubles, six RBIs and four runs scored in five games last week.

STEPHEN MOORE, NAVY So., P, Roswell, Ga.
Moore tossed a seven-inning complete game with a run and five hits allowed and four strikeouts in a 7-1 win in the series opener against Army on Sunday.

Colella tossed six scoreless innings last week, picking up a win and a save in Holy Cross' series with Bucknell.