Record-setting season ends early

Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Husky baseball team enjoyed another record-setting season in 2011. The Huskies posted a team record 43 wins (43-11) this spring, which included a first place finish at the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference tournament and a 26-6 regular season record in the always rugged NSIC.

Under the direction of fourth-year head coach Pat Dolan '92, the nationally ranked Huskies received their second consecutive bid to the NCAA Division II tournament and also earned the Central Region's No. 1 seed for postseason play. As the top seed, St. Cloud State hosted NCAA Division II Central Region play at Joe Faber Field and Dick Putz Field from May 19-24. This marked the first time in team history that the Huskies have hosted postseason NCAA tournament play.

On the field, St. Cloud State was led by sophomore third baseman Jordan Smith, Willmar, who batted .382 with 57 RBIs and 78 hits. Smith earned NSIC and Central Region Player of the Year honors for the Huskies and he is slated to play this summer in the elite Cape Cod League for Yarmouth-Dennis.

Other Huskies to earn All-NSIC and All-Region notice were sophomore pitcher Scott Lieser, Browerville, senior pitcher Ryne Schwenke, Sigourney, Iowa and sophomore shortstop Travis Cariveau, Sauk Rapids. First baseman Joey Benke was also named to the All-NSIC squad. The junior from Roseau holds career records for most RBIs (141) and most doubles (46).

On the topic of stats, the Huskies ranked among the nation's top 20 Division II teams for hits and team earned run average. The Huskies outscored opponents by a 401-165 margin this spring and the pitching staff charted a solid 2.83 ERA.

- Story By Tom Nelson

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