For the third time in as many years, the Northern Essex Community College Knights baseball team went to the National Junior College Athletic Association Division III World Series in Tyler, TX. They finished sixth in the country with an overall record of 21-14. Last year they were eighth in the nation.
This was the fourth time in the college’s history that the Knights qualified for the World Series. Their first trip to the Division III World Series was in 2006.
The Knights started the series defeating Herkimer County Community College of New York 8 to 5. They advanced to play Tyler Junior College – losing 17 to 2 before bowing out of the series with a loss toWaubonsee, Illinois 4 to 1. Freshman Ryan McAuliffe of North Reading allowed only one earned run, nine hits and one walk while striking out four over nine innings.
For the season, Zachary Beckwith of Manchester, NH, led the team in pitching with a 1.723 ERA with 62.2 innings pitched, 41 strike outs and nine walks. Elmidio Crisostme of Lynn led the batting with an average of 389, three home runs, 28 runs and 18 rbi’s. Jonathan DelaCruz of Haverhill followed up with a .362 avg., 39 runs, 23 RBIs and 20 stolen bases.
Members of the Knight’s selected to the NJCAA Region XXI All-Region, All New England Team, Division III, 1st Team – Harrison Smoske, catcher of Burlington; Jonathan DeLaCruz, outfield of Haverhill; Zack Beckwith, pitcher of Manchester, NH; and Ryan McAuliffe, pitcher of North Reading. Honorable Mention went to Trevor Bouvier, short stop of Salem, NH, and Anthony Ciaini, designated hitter of Exeter, NH.
Knights Coach Jeff Mejia was named Coach of theYear:
Gold Glove Players-of-the-Year went to Jonathan DeLaCruz of Haverhill, center fielder and the Defensive Player of the Year went to Dan Bonito of Swampscott, first base.
The team included:
Jonathan De La Cruz, sophomore, of Haverhill; Elmidio Crisostome, freshman, of Lynn, Shawn Doyle, freshman of Everett; Samuel Quiroz, freshman of Lawrence; Harrison Smoske, freshman ofBurlington; Trevor Bouvier, sophomore of Salem, NH; MacDanial Singleton, freshman of Everett;Jose Ortiz, sophomore of Salem, NH; Ryan Decke, freshman, Salem, NH; Paul Mahoney, sophomore, Andover; Anthony Caiani, sophomore, Exeter, NH; Ryan McAuliffe, freshman, North Reading; Mauricio Peralta, freshman, Methuen; Daniel Bonito, sophomore, Swampscott; David Quezada, sophomore, Lawrence; Zachary Beckwith, sophomore, Manchester, NH; Zarif Pajazetovic, freshman, Everett; Daniel Peters, sophomore, Salem, NH; and Jake Rayner, sophomore, Billerica.
Northern Essex offers seven varsity sports teams including baseball, softball, women’s basketball, men’s basketball, track & field, and volleyball. NECC’s philosophy is that the classroom experience is what makes a well-rounded athlete.
NECC Athletic director Sue MacAvoy says, “Northern Essex is a place where you become a better person and a better athlete.”
For additional information on NECC’s athletic programs visit the website athttp://www.necc.mass.edu/student-life/athletics/teams/