Baseball Picked Fourth in Preseason Poll

HARTSVILLE, S.C. – The Coker College baseball team has been selected to finish fourth in the South Atlantic Conference preseason poll, the league office announced today. The Cobras begin their first season of play in the SAC in 2014.

Coker is coming off a historic 2013 campaign which included a 38-16 overall record, a Conference Carolinas tournament title, an NCAA Southeast regional title and a trip to the Division II National Finals.

In addition to the preseason ranking, Shea Bell, Andrew Goot and Fico Kondla were named to the SAC preseason all-conference second team.

Bell, a senior shortstop, batted .247 last season with 40 hits, 24 runs, 17 RBIs and 21 stolen bases. In the field, Bell racked up 90 putouts and 130 assists.

Goot, a senior pitcher, finished last season with a perfect 8-0 record on the mound. He struck out 62 batters while posting a 4.50 ERA in 34 appearances. He was named Conference Carolinas player of the week twice, first team all-conference and was also NCBWA Southeast region pitcher of the week in 2013.

Kondla, a senior first baseman, had a monster season in 2013. He batted .418, drove in 50 runs with 76 hits, scored 42 runs and belted three home runs. He also racked up a .990 fielding percentage to go along with 469 putouts and 20 assists. He was named to the Conference Carolinas first team, was named Conference player of the week three times, Conference Carolinas all-tournament team, NCAA Southeast regional all-tournament team and the NCBWA all-region team. In addition, he was a finalist for the Josh Willingham Award, which recognizes the top player in Division II.

Catawba College took home the top preseason honors with 97 points and nine first-place votes. Tusculum College and Wingate University tied for second at 78 points. Newberry, which came in at No. 5, also took home two first-place votes.

The entire preseason poll is as follows: 1. Catawba College; 2. Tusculum College; 2. Wingate University; 4. Coker College; 5. Newberry College; 6. Lincoln Memorial University; 7. Carson- Newman College; 8. Lenoir-Rhyne University; 9. Brevard College; 10. Anderson University; 11. Mars Hill College.

Release written by media relations intern Aaron Beebe '15.