Fantastic Five Honored As Weekly Award Winners

Marist's Brett Houseal (Amsterdam 2011) captured his second MAAC Pitcher of the Week award. Photo courtesy Marist athletics

Five players with ties to teams in the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League have earned weekly awards from their respective conferences based on their play in games for the period of Mar. 25 through Mar. 31. Two of the five have previously pitched in the PGCBL and two others have signed to compete in the PGCBL in 2013.

Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference – Pitcher of the Week
Brett Houseal (Amsterdam 2011), Marist

Marist College senior Brett Housel earned his second MAAC Pitcher of the Week award of the season; he has won the MAAC’s top pitching prize twice in the last three weeks. Housel pitched an 11-inning complete game in a 2-1 triumph over conference rival Siena on Mar. 30 in Loudonville, N.Y. The Marist senior allowed one run on seven hits, walked three and struck out five in a 128-pitch outing. He yielded a single Saint score in the second and then blanked the home side for the next nine frames. Six of Siena’s seven hits came in the first four innings. Houseal seated 12 Siena swingers in a row between the fourth and eighth innings and overall retired 22 of the final 24 batters he faced. The Saints managed just two base runners in the final seven frames. The senior has twirled three complete games in a row and amassed 25.0 total innings pitched in his last starts. 

Mid-America Conference – West Division Pitcher of the Week
Eli Anderson (Adirondack 2013), Northern Illinois

For the second week in a row, Northern Illinois University junior Eli Anderson (Adirondack 2013) was named the MAC’s West Division Pitcher of the Week. Anderson blanked Kent State on Mar. 23 with a complete game shutout in a 6-0 victory to earn his first Pitcher of the Week accolade. He followed up with a complete game six-hitter in a 2-1 triumph over conference opponent Akron on Mar. 30. Anderson scattered six singles, walked none and struck out six in his second straight complete game. The NIU junior blanked the home-standing Zips through the first seven frames to run up a career high scoreless streak to 16.0 innings. Just two Akron runners were allowed to advance safely past first base and only one made it past second. The Glenview, Ill., native is 2-0 with a 0.50 earned run average over his last two starts. He has given up just one run in 18.0 innings pitched and has totaled 14 strikeouts in wins over Kent State and Akron.

West Coast Conference – Player of the Week
Tommy Cheek (Glens Falls 2010), Loyola Marymount

Loyola Marymount University junior Tommy Cheek (Glens Falls 2010) helped the Lions to a 3-1 week with wins over nationally-ranked Cal State Fullerton and WCC opponent Gonzaga. Cheek batted .500 (7-for-14) with four RBI and two runs scored. The LMU designated hitter had at least one hit in all four games and he drove in at least one run or scored one run in three of four contests. Cheek played a key role in LMU’s 3-2 upset win at Cal State Fullerton on Mar. 26. With the bases loaded in the seventh and one out, Cheek entered as a pinch hitter for the Lions. A wild pitch with Cheek at the plate forced a 1-1 tie and then the LMU junior socked a 3-2 pitch through the left side to put Loyola Marymount in the lead for good. Cheek started all three games of LMU’s home series against Gonzaga. The former Golden Eagle’s best performance came in the series opener when he went 4-for-4 with two RBI and one run scored in a 7-4 slugfest victory. 

Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference – West Pitcher of the Week
Shayne Herold (Newark 2011), Gannon

Gannon University redshirt senior Shayne Herold (Newark 2011) was nearly perfect in a complete game one-hit shutout performance against PSAC West foe Lock Haven on Mar. 30. Herold allowed just three base runners in the seven-inning contest on a single, a walk and a hit batter. He struck out eight overall and seated 21 of Lock Haven’s 24 batters. Herold no-hit the Bald Eagles through the first four frames and allowed just a single base runner. The redshirt senior yielded a one-out single in the fifth for Lock Haven’s lone hit. Herold finished off the complete game shutout by retiring the final eight Lock Haven batters in a row. The LeRoy, N.Y., native has thrown complete game one-hitters in back-to-back starts. Earlier this week, he was also tapped as the NCAA Division II Mid-Atlantic Pitcher of the Week by the National College Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA).

Empire 8 – Player of the Week
Brad Rush (Watertown 2013), St. John Fisher

St. John Fisher College junior Brad Rush (Watertown 2013) was nearly a one-man wrecking crew for the Cardinals in an Empire 8 series at Stevens. Rush batted .500 (6-for-12) in the four-game set with two home runs, six RBI, five runs scored. The junior recorded at least one hit and scored one run in all four games and he drove in at least one run in three of the four tilts. Defensively, the Albion, N.Y., native started all four contests at first base and was flawless in 22 total chances with 20 putouts and two assists. Rush doubled and scored twice in a series-opening victory for the Cardinals. He drove in one run and scored another in the second game which was the night cap of a Mar. 29 twin bill. The following day, Rush bashed two home runs and plated five as the Cardinals split with the Ducks despite scoring 11 combined runs in a twin bill.

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