Six Players Named NCCAA All-Region; Mila Named Baseball All-American
May 22, 2009
Written By: Michael Brown, Palm Beach Atlantic University SID
GREENVILLE, S.C.- With their season now complete, it is now time to start handing out the hardware in form of postseason honors. After a National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) South Regional title, six Sailfish players were named to the All-Region team including second-baseman Vasilios Mila then being recognized this week as a NCCAA All-American while at the 2009 NCCAA World Series.
Beyond Mila, others recognized on the NCCAA All-Region team were senior Nick Norley, junior Neil Hardon, sophomores Graham White and Taylor McBath, and freshman Jeff Moyer. Moyer was also honored as the South Region Freshman of the Year for his outstanding first campaign in a Sailfish uniform.
In leading his team to a NCCAA South Region championship for the second time in four seasons, head coach Rob Avila was named Regional Coach of the Year.
A junior college transfer from Owens Community College, Mila made an immediate impact for the Fish both at second-base and as a presence at the top of the order. Spending most of his season in the leadoff spot, Mila also saw time in the middle of the order as well during the mid-part of the season which helped him garner team-highs in RBI’s with 37 runs driven home.
Other team leading totals from Mila came in the more traditional leadoff hitting statistics of runs scored (47), hits (75), doubles (14), triples (4), and stolen bases with 22 in 26 attempts. Mila also was near the top of the team in homeruns with five, in walks with 14, and a team-best .395 batting average.
Batting behind Mila in the batting order for much of the season has been senior Nick Norley who earned the All-Region selection as the team’s regular shortstop. A super utility player in years past with time in the infield and outfield, Norley was forced into full-time duty as the team’s regular shortstop two weeks into the season when PBA lost Joaquin Valdes to an injury that required Moyer to move from shortstop to third-base.
Norley responded with a solid season with the bat, glove, and on the base-paths. Flirting with the .400 batting mark late in the season, Norley cooled somewhat but still managed to finish out his final year with a second-best team batting average of .354 while finishing second to Mila in overall hits (64), runs (44), and doubles (13). Norley also registered three homeruns while driving in 21 runs and stealing 11 bases in 14 attempts.
After missing the first fifteen games of the season, junior transfer Neil Hardon found a home in the middle of the Sailfish batting order and in right-field. A native of Phoenix, Arizona, Hardon put together a solid season of a .294 batting average, five homeruns, and 26 runs driven home in 31 games.
Two of the top pitcher’s on the staff, Taylor McBath and Graham White on paper couldn’t be much more different on paper. McBath made 10 appearances on the season, all starts, while White appeared in 15 games with only two games coming in a starting role. However, both proved their value to the team with their effectiveness in their roles.
McBath paced the team with three wins against only four losses while picking up victories against the likes of Rollins College, Eckerd College, and Emmanuel College. McBath finished third on the team in innings pitched with 51 while adding in 46 strikeouts and just 16 walks on the season.
White came to PBA this season after one year at Stillman College and provided head coach Rob Avila with a valuable left-hander from a variety of roles. White finished 1-2 on the season with that one victory coming in dominant fashion as he limited Florida Memorial College to only one run in a complete game effort in April.
White led the squad with a 4.28 earned run average while tossing 33.2 innings and registering 24 strikeouts and limiting opponents to a .246 average.
Moyer rounded out the All-Region selections for PBA as he posted a solid freshman campaign from the left-side of the infield. A product of The Master’s Academy in Orlando, Moyer led the Sailfish with seven homeruns on the season while also posting other impressive offensive totals in batting average (.333), hits (60), runs (36), doubles (13), and RBI’s (29).
Congrats to these players on their individual accomplishments as they have been honored by the NCCAA for their solid play on and off the field.