OVERLAND PARK, Kan. --- The Association of Division III Independents (AD3I) released its 2017 All-Independent selections for baseball and softball this morning, and eight representatives of Maranatha Baptist University were selected to the teams as was voted by each institution within the 13-member association.
For the softball team, Harmony Bailey (Rudyard, Mich.) and Tina Kolinski (Menomonee Falls, Wis.) garnered first-team honors while Hannah May (Rudyard, Mich.) was named to the second team. This marked the fourth consecutive year that the softball team posted multiple players to the All-Independent first team.
On the baseball side, the Sabercats boasted five second-team selections, as Caleb Courtney (Guthrie Center, Iowa), Jordan Garrison (Watertown, Wis.), Caleb Prigge (Watertown, Wis.), Micah Shepard (Little Rock, Ark.), and Wes Wagner (New Waverly, Texas) all made the second-team cut. The five-player showing was the most the baseball team has registered on the AD3I All-Independent selections since joining the association for the 2013-14 season.
Bailey, who was voted by the team as the MVP for the season, produced an eye-catching rookie year as she broke the program record for RBIs in a single season (33)*. Bailey registered 15 extra-base hits and was just shy of a .400 batting average, as she logged a .396 average on the year. Bailey contributed from the circle as well, as she recorded two wins in her rookie season and struck out 17 batters in a two-game stretch against North Central on April 14-15. Bailey was also named to the NCCAA North Region All-Regional team and was subsequently named NCCAA student-athlete of the week.
Kolinski earned All-Independent first team honors for the second season running, as the lightning-quick junior proved both her defensive worth and her value at the plate as the leadoff hitter. Kolinski recorded an 11-game hitting streak from April 14-21 and scored 27 runs while registered 34 hits. Kolinski co-led the association with 27 stolen bases and had a clean .980 fielding percentage for the year at left field and catcher.
May produced some noteworthy power as the cleanup hitter this year, as the rookie produced 14 extra-base hits on the season. May drove in 26 runs off of 34 hits and had a reliable glove at the shortstop position. Her five-homer tally was the second-best in a single season for the Sabercats, and she became just the seventh player in program history to record two home runs in the same game when she whacked two dingers against North Central (Minn.) on April 15. May also recorded the highest batting average (.405) and slugging percentage (.726) for the Sabercats during her rookie year and earned NCCAA All-Region honors.
Courtney, a team captain, once again was a team leader on the field, as the first baseman led the team in runs scored (18) and logged 29 hits (team second-best). Courtney batted .384 and drove in 10 runs as the leadoff hitter. Courtney finished his four-year career at or near the top spots in Maranatha program history, as he accumulated 87 hits (T-2nd), 39 RBIs (5th), 93 total bases (7th), 53 runs scored (2nd), and 105 games started (3rd).
Garrison was once again a threat on the mound, as the junior picked up his sixth career win and was in the top five in the AD3I with a 5.25 earned run average. Garrison faced difficult opponents all year, as the likes of Edgewood (NACC), Dominican (NACC) and Berea (NCCAA) were in Garrison's share of the rotation. The Watertown native showed his defensive versatility by frequently playing in the right field and first base positions, and he showed promise at the plate with a career-high 26 hits and 12 RBIs.
Prigge battled through adversity during his senior year, as he worked through an early-season injury during his last season in the Blue & Gold. Prigge was a mainstay at second base as he produced multiple athletic defensive plays to keep opponents frustrated throughout the season. The senior logged 22 hits on the year, scored nine runs, drove in four runs, and was given the Coach's Award at the end of the season.
Shepard quietly led the team with 31 hits on the year and quickly acclimated himself to the busy shortstop position, where he teamed up with Prigge for an athletic heart of the infield. Shepard helped turn 10 double plays on the season and logged a 1.64 ERA as a closing pitcher. The junior out of Little Rock, Ark. also scored 12 runs and drove in eight on the season. Shepard's 31-hit tally landed him inside the top 10 for hits in a single season in Maranatha program history.
Wagner made his mark at the plate this season, as the senior drove in 27 runs to finish with 56 RBIs in his Maranatha career. Those marks landed the Texan at the top of the charts in Maranatha individual-career history, as well as at second-best in a season (tied). Adding to the accolades is the fact that Wagner played just three seasons at Maranatha, as he transferred to MBU from Beloit College for the 2014-15 season. Wagner also led the team with 11 doubles (T-1st in a season) to finish with 18 doubles in his MBU career (T-2nd). Wagner finished his MBU career with 94 total bases, which was good enough for sixth all-time.
More about MBU Athletics: The mission of the Athletic Department of Maranatha Baptist University is to develop leadership skills in the student-athlete through skilled training, godly mentoring, and intercollegiate competition.
*Only documented records are used when compiling the all-time statistics. If you find an error or omission, please contact email@example.com with documentation of your proposed corrections.