Seven Close Out April With Weekly Conference Prizes

Empire 8 Co-Player of the Week Sean Osterman (Newark 2011) in action last summer for the Newark Pilots against Jimmy Hill (3) and the Cooperstown Hawkeyes. Photo courtesy Newark Pilots/Steve Plopper
Seven players from teams in the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League have earned weekly awards from their respective conferences for the period ending April 29. Five different PGCBL clubs are represented in the weekly awards.

America East Pitcher of the Week
Sean Lucas (Saratoga 2008), University at Albany

Great West Player of the Week
Jake Rickenbach (Elmira 2010), Utah Valley

Northeast Conference Player of the Week
Josh Ingham (Cooperstown 2012), Central Conn. State

PSAC East Division Pitcher of the Week
Dominick Ruscitti (Newark 2011), Kutztown

Sunshine State Conference Player of the Week
Carlos Asuaje (Oneonta 2011), Nova Southeastern

Empire 8 Co-Player of the Week
Sean Osterman (Newark 2011), St. John Fisher

Arizona Community College Athletic Conference Div. I Pitcher of the Week
Ryan Peterson (Glens Falls 2012), Yavapai

University at Albany redshirt senior Sean Lucas (Saratoga 2008) was selected as the Pitcher of the Week by the America East conference. Lucas, a transfer from Virginia, fired eight shutout innings in a 1-0 victory over the University of Maine on Apr. 28 in Orono. The Great Danes won the game with a single score in the 10th. The UAlbany starter scattered eight hits, walked none and struck out six. Lucas recorded 19 of 24 outs via strikeout or groundout. Through 10 starts, the Fishkill, N.Y., native leads the Great Danes with 43 strikeouts. He is tied for the team lead in wins (three) and is second among UAlbany starting pitchers in ERA (4.82).

The Great West Conference has tapped Utah Valley University redshirt senior Jake Rickenbach (Elmira 2010) as its Player of the Week. As of this writing, the Utah Valley Wolverines have won an NCAA Division I best 24-straight games. Rickenbach helped the Wolverines to a four-game weekend sweep of conference foe NJIT over the weekend. He batted .615 (8-for-13), scored eight runs, walked seven times and drove in three. The UVU lead-off hitter doubled three times and posted a .750 on-base percentage. He recorded at least one hit, one walk and one run in all four games versus NJIT and had three multi-hit and three multi-walk games. Rickenbach’s best effort was in the series’ opener. He reached base five times in five plate appearances with three hits and two walks; he also scored four runs in a 14-0 victory. The Pleasant Grove, Utah, native ended the week with a team season high 24-game hitting streak.

Central Connecticut University sophomore Josh Ingham (Cooperstown 2012) has been chosen as the Player of the Week by the Northeast Conference. The versatile utility man helped the Blue Devils to a 4-1 week that included a conference series victory over Wagner. Ingham batted .333 (5-for-15) with three runs scored, two RBI and two sacrifice hits. As a reliever, he went 1-0 with one save and a 0.00 earned run average in two appearances against Wagner. He scattered four hits, walked none and struck out seven. In the opening game of the Wagner series, a 4-3 victory in 12 innings, Ingham tossed four scoreless frames of pressure-packed relief and struck out six; he also singled in the bottom of the 12th and scored the game-winning run. The sophomore boasts a .308 batting average and 15 RBI along with a 2-1 record, seven saves and 23 strikeouts in 24.1 innings pitched.

Dominick Ruscitti (Newark 2011), the 2011 PGCBL Pitcher of the Year, has been named the Pitcher of the Week in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference’s East Division. Ruscitti pitched a four-hit shutout over nine innings in a 5-0 extra-inning victory at Mansfield on Apr. 27. The senior scattered four singles, walked none and struck out six in the 10-frame tilt. He faced four batters over the minimum and tossed 113 pitches in his sixth victory of the spring. Between the fourth and eighth innings, Ruscitti seated 14-straight Mansfield hitters. Overall, he retired 18 of the final 20 Mounties that he faced. Heading into the PSAC playoffs, Ruscitti is 6-2 with a 2.54 earned run average. He leads the Golden Bears in innings pitched (56.2) and strikeouts (39).

Nova Southeastern University sophomore Carlos Asuaje (Oneonta 2011) was tabbed as the Player of the Week by the Sunshine State Conference. The 2011 SSC Freshman of the Year helped the 12th-ranked Sharks to a home series victory over seventh-ranked Lynn. Asuaje batted .571 (8-for-14) with one home run, three RBI, four runs scored and three walks. The sophomore had two hits in all four NSU games and he tallied at least one RBI and one run in the three of the four. He belted his lone long ball of the week in the series’ finale with Lynn; he scored twice in the game and finished 2-for-3. The Weston, Fla., native leads Nova Southeastern in batting average (.447), hits (68), runs scored (45), doubles (21), walks (26), on-base percentage (.527) and stolen bases (13).

St. John Fisher College junior Sean Osterman (Newark 2011) was one of two student-athletes named Empire 8 Co-Player of the Week. Osterman shared the award with Matt Keller of Ithaca. Both Osterman and Keller were named to the Team of the Week. The starting centerfielder for the Cardinals batted .474 (9-for-19) with two home runs, 11 RBI, nine runs scored and five stolen bases. Fisher went undefeated (5-0) for the week and swept a four-game conference series with Utica. Osterman had at least one hit in all five games. Sunday, the Pittsford, N.Y., native ended a resumed game (from Apr. 1) against Utica with a walk-off grand slam in the bottom of the 12th inning to give Fisher an 8-5 victory. In the regularly-scheduled game, Osterman exploded with a 5-for-6 performance that included six RBI, five runs, two doubles, one triple and one sacrifice fly. Through 35 games, the junior is batting .383 with three home runs and 36 RBI. Fisher stands at 27-8 for the season.

Yavapi College freshman Ryan Peterson (Glens Falls 2012) earned the Division I Pitcher of the Week award in the Arizona Community College Athletic Conference. Peterson pitched a complete game three-hit shutout as Yavapai clinched the ACCAC regular season title with a 10-0 win over Eastern Arizona College. The Yavapai frosh walked none and struck out five for the Roughriders. The Rancho San Diego,  Calif., native leads Yavapai in innings pitched (86.1). He is 7-4 with a 3.34 earned run average and 60 strikeouts.

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