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    UConn Earns Three BIG EAST Major Awards

    UCONNHUSKIESDOTCOM Jim Penders earned BIG EAST Coach of the Year honors for the third time in his career.
    UCONNHUSKIESDOTCOM
    Jim Penders earned BIG EAST Coach of the Year honors for the third time in his career.
    UCONNHUSKIESDOTCOM

    May 24, 2011

    BIG EAST Release

    CLEARWATER, Fla. - Head coach Jim Penders was named the 2011 BIG EAST Coach of the Year as announced by the conference on Tuesday night as part of the 2011 BIG EAST Baseball Championship Opening Ceremonies. Matt Barnes was named BIG EAST Pitcher of the Year, while George Springer was tagged with BIG EAST Player of the Year honors. In addition to the major awards, 11 Huskies were named to the All-BIG EAST Teams.

    For the second straight year, Penders was named the league's Coach of the Year as he led the Huskies to 39 overall wins and a league-record 22 victories during regular season play. The Huskies also won the 2011 Regular Season title. Currently in his eighth year at the helm of the Huskies, he is now a three-time recipient of the award, winning the honor in 2006 and in 2010, respectively.

    Matt Barnes, who was tagged as the 2011 Preseason Pitcher of the Year, went on to register an 11-3 record during regular-season play, while earning an ERA of 1.11, a team-best. In 14 starts, Barnes threw three complete games, struck out 97 batters and pitched 105 innings. The junior earned eight wins in BIG EAST Conference play, tying the all-time single-season mark in league history. He is just one of three all-time UConn pitchers to register 10 or more wins in a single season and ranks tied for second with current teammate Greg Nappo with 24 career wins.

    George Springer, who also earned a major award in the preseason as he was named BIG EAST Preseason Player of the Year, led the Huskies during the regular season batting .379 in 55 games en route to being the unanimous selection for Player of the Year. The junior led the Huskies with 77 hits, 12 home runs, 51 runs scored and 72 RBI. He has stolen a team-high 29 bags and is slugging .685. This is the second major conference honor for the New Britain, Conn. native as he was named the BIG EAST Rookie of the Year in 2009.


     

     

    Barnes is just the second UConn pitcher to earn the BIG EAST Pitcher of the Year honor as Charles Nagy was given the award in both the 1987 and 1988 seasons.

    Springer becomes the fifth Husky to be tagged with Player of the Year honors and the first since Mike Scott was named Co-Player of the Year in 2001. Prior to 2001, Jason Grabowski earned the honor in 1996, while Sal Tinnerello earned the award in 1992. Dave Ford was the first-ever BIG EAST Pitcher of the Year in 1985 when the Huskies finished in first place in the league's North Division during that season.

    Barnes and Springer were unanimous picks for the All-BIG EAST First Team, while Greg Nappo, Doug Elliot, Mike Nemeth, LJ Mazzilli, Ryan Fuller and Nick Ahmed made the All-BIG EAST Second Team.

    Juniors Kevin Vance, John Andreoli and Tim Martin earned spots on the All-BIG EAST Third Team, respectively.

    The Huskies will begin postseason play on Wednesday, May 25 as they are scheduled to take on Notre Dame at 8:00 p.m. at Bright House Field in Clearwater, Fla.

    2011 BIG EAST CONFERENCE BASEBALL AWARDS
    BIG EAST PLAYER OF THE YEAR
    George Springer, OF, Connecticut (Jr., New Britain, Conn.) *

    BIG EAST PITCHER OF THE YEAR
    Matt Barnes, RHP, Connecticut (Jr., Bethel, Conn.)

    BIG EAST ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
    Trey Mancini, 1B, Notre Dame (Fr., Winter Haven, Fla.)

    BIG EAST COACH OF THE YEAR
    Jim Penders, Connecticut

    ALL-BIG EAST FIRST TEAM
    Pos.
    Player
    School
    Cl
    Hometown
    P
    Connecticut
    Jr.
    Bethel, Conn.
    P
    Justin Amlung
    Louisville
    So.
    Louisville, Ky.
    P
    Kyle Hansen
    St. John's
    So.
    Glen Gove, N.Y.
    P
    Joe DiRocco
    Seton Hall
    Sr.
    East Hanover, N.J.
    C
    Kevan Smith *
    Pittsburgh
    Sr.
    Cranberry Township, Pa.
    1B
    David Chester
    Pittsburgh
    Sr.
    Collinsville, Okla.
    2B
    Ryan Wright
    Louisville
    Jr.
    Fort Wayne, Ind.
    3B
    Jonathan Koscso
    USF
    Sr.
    Tampa, Fla.
    SS
    Joe Panik
    St. John's
    Jr.
    Hopewell Junction, N.Y.
    OF
    Justin Riddell
    Cincinnati
    Sr.
    Lexington, Ky.
    OF
    Connecticut
    Jr.
    New Britain, Conn.
    OF
    Rand Ravnaas
    Georgetown
    Jr.
    Fort Worth, Texas
    OF
    Jeremy Baltz
    St. John's
    So.
    Vestal, N.Y.
    DH
    Jeremy Gum
    West Virginia
    Sr.
    Bridgeport, W.Va.
     
     
    * unanimous selection
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    ALL-BIG EAST SECOND TEAM
    Pos.
    Player
    School
    Cl
    Hometown
    P
    Connecticut
    Sr.
    Madison, Conn.
    P
    Matt Iannazzo
    Pittsburgh
    Jr.
    Norwalk, Conn.
    P
    Randy Fontanez
    USF
    Sr.
    Oviedo, Fla.
    P
    Kevin Quackenbush
    USF
    Sr.
    Tampa, Fla.
    C
    Connecticut
    Sr.
    Rocky Hill, Conn.
    1B
    Connecticut
    Sr.
    Washington, N.J.
    2B
    Connecticut
    So.
    Greenwich, Conn.
    3B
    Connecticut
    Jr.
    Old Lyme, Conn.
    SS
    Connecticut
    Jr.
    East Longmeadow, Mass.
    OF
    Stewart Ijames
    Louisville
    Jr.
    Louisville, Ky.
    OF
    John Schultz
    Pittsburgh
    Sr.
    West Lawn, Pa.
    OF
    Michael Lang
    Rutgers
    Sr.
    Dumont, N.J.
    DH
    Justin Glass
    Cincinnati
    Fr.
    Fort Wayne, Ind.
     
     
     
     
     
    ALL-BIG EAST THIRD TEAM
    Pos.
    Player
    School
    Cl
    Hometown
    P
    Connecticut
    Jr.
    Solana Beach, Calif.
    P
    Tony Zych
    Louisville
    Jr.
    Monee, Ill.
    P
    Brian Dupra
    Notre Dame
    Sr.
    Rochester, N.Y.
    C
    Erick Fernandez
    Georgetown
    Sr.
    Hialeah, Fla.
    1B
    Trey Mancini
    Notre Dame
    Fr.
    Winter Haven, Fla.
    1B
    Paul Karmas
    St. John's
    Sr.
    Douglaston, N.Y.
    3B
    Sean Lamont
    Georgetown
    Sr.
    Houston, Texas
    SS
    Grant Buckner
    West Virginia
    Sr.
    Elkview W.Va.
    OF
    Braden Kline
    Cincinnati
    Fr.
    Warsaw, Ind.
    OF
    Connecticut
    Jr.
    Shrewsbury, Mass.
    OF
    Casey Roche
    Pittsburgh
    Fr.
    Downingtown, Pa.
    DH
    Connecticut
    Jr.
    Stratford, Conn.
    DH
    Anthony Defabio
    Pittsburgh
    Jr.
    Pittsburgh, Pa.