West Windsor, N.J. – The Mercer County Community College ( MCCC) baseball team clinched the Region 19 title this past weekend with a dramatic win over Lackawanna College, the defending champs. The Vikings lost to Lackawanna 7-5 on Saturday in 12 innings, and then came back on Sunday to trounce the defending champs 17-3. Freshman pitcher Matt Gall was named the tournament MVP after striking out seven players in eight innings in the deciding game.
All-Region 19 honors have been announced. Pitcher Heath Fillmyer, pitcher Ben Stine, catcher David Osnato, and outfielder Joe Santospago have been selected to the First Team All-Region. Infielder Steven Todd, outfielder Edward Ashley, and outfielder Mark Tomei have been named to the Second Team All-Region.
Three Vikings players are among the Top Five Players in Region 19: Heath Fillmyer was named Region 19’s Player of the Year, David Osnato tied for the no. 2 Player in Region 19, and Ben Stine was named the no. 5 Player in the Region. Osnato has been selected to the 26-man roster for the 2014 NJCAA All-Star team that represents Junior College Baseball from across the country.
Says Head Coach Kevin Kerins, "The Region 19 title has been three years in the making and these players have played a significant role in getting us there.”
Kerins maintains that the Vikings’ resilience has been key to their success, especially during the tournament. "After losing in extra innings on Saturday, the toughest loss we had all year, they came back and played their best game at the biggest moment of the season,” he said.
Kerins, now in his third season as head coach, notes that the sophomores are part of the first class recruited by the current coaching staff. “I am particularly happy and proud of our sophomores. They bought into our program and believed in our vision.”
The Vikings, who are currently 37-6, face Cecil, MD, in the best-of-three Northeast District championship at home this weekend. Due to bad weather predicted for Friday, the games will be played Saturday at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., and Sunday at 11 a.m. (if needed). The winner advances to the NJCAA World Series. The Vikings’ last trip to the World Series was in 2003.
Click here for the post-season schedule and for game recaps. See more photos on Facebook here.
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