Knights Baseball Players Receive National Awards
The Northern Essex Community College Knights baseball team’s season may be over, but the good news keeps on coming for some of the team members.
Short stop Ryley Warnock of North Reading is the recipient of the National Junior College Athletic Association’s (NJCAA) Division III Rawlings Gold Glove Award for short stop.
The NECC defense ranked in the top 10 in opponents’ batting average; spearheading the effort was middle infielder Ryley Warnock. Despite the Knights’ 32-game schedule, Warnock ranked in the top 25 in assists with 19 and tied for 13th with 20 double plays on the year. Falling victim to just six errors in 152 total chances during the season, the sophomore shortstop accumulated a .961 fielding percentage and registered 54 putouts.
He was also selected as the NJCAA Division III defensive player of the year, which goes to the top defensive player of Division III.
Warnock will attend Ave Maria University in Florida this fall where he will continue to play baseball.
The NJCAA made this announcement in conjunction with the American Baseball Coaches Association.
The 2015 ABCA/Rawlings Gold Glove Awards honors the top defensive player from each district. Selections were made by each division’s respective sport committee. In order to be eligible for the honor, student-athletes must have been nominated by their respective region.
But there’s more. Ryan McAuliffe, also of North Reading, a pitcher for the NECC Knights, was named NJCAA All American First Team.
Harrison Smoske of Burlington, an NECC outfielder, was NJCAA All American Second Team. He also received a NJCAA Division III Marucci Elite Hitter Award with a .441 batting average.
The Knights made their fourth consecutive trip to the NJCAA World Series this year, the third under NECC Knights Coach Jeff Mejia.
They ended their season with a 28 to 4 record.
“I am so incredibly proud of the team as a whole as well as the players’ individual accomplishments,” said NECC Athletic Director Sue MacAvoy.
NECC offers three men’s varsity sports, baseball, basketball and track and field as well as three women’s varsity sports including softball, volleyball, and track and field.
For information on NECC sports visit the website.