TLU’s Riley Schaefer (left) was named the West Region Player of the Year, and Nathan Malinovsky (right) was named the West Region Pitcher of the Year by D3baseball.com this week.
(Seguin) - D3baseball.com released its All West Region team on Monday, and the Division III World Series bound Texas Lutheran Bulldogs were well represented with five honorees and two major award winners.
TLU’s Riley Schaefer was named the West Region Player of the Year, while fellow Bulldog Nathan Malinovsky was honored as the West Region Pitcher of the Year.
TLU's Tyler Cauley and Dylan Drgac joined Schaefer and Malinovsky on the All Region first team. Keaton Boysen received third team recognition.
Schaefer, a senior outfielder from Thorndale, Texas, has had an outstanding senior campaign, currently holding a .434 batting average, while slugging .657. Both marks rank second in the conference. Schaefer also leads the league in runs (60), hits (86) and total bases (130). For the season, he tallied 14 doubles, three triples and eight home runs. Earlier this spring, Schaefer was named the SCAC Player-of-the-Year.
Malinovsky, a junior pitcher from New Braunfels, Texas, was named the SCAC Pitcher-of-the-Year for the second time in his career after closing out the regular season with the conference's best ERA. After regional action, Malinovsky continues to top the conference leaderboard with an ERA of 1.34. He is also tied for the team lead with 11 wins this year, recording only one loss on the season and tallying two saves. Malinovsky's 98 strikouts rank second in the SCAC, behind only Drgac.
Cauley, a sophomore outfielder from Baytown, Texas, earned first team honors after another strong season. Cauley currently sits fifth in the league with a .384 batting average, while leading the conference in slugging percentage (.706), home runs (10), doubles (17) and RBI (60). His 68 hits this season rank second to Schaefer.
Drgac, a senior pitcher from Caldwell, Texas, has made his mark this season, helping the Bulldogs to a conference championship and a regional championship, working as both a starter and reliever on the mound. For the season, Drgac holds a 2.69 ERA and has posted a record of 11-1 with one save. His 108 strikeouts ranks sixth all-time in SCAC history for a single season mark.
Boysen, a senior designated hitter from Scottsdale, Ariz., has made his mark this season, hitting .357 and slugging .541 with 19 runs and 22 RBI in just 109 plate appearances. Most recently, Boysen clinched the Bulldogs' regional championship with a walk-off RBI single to defeat Willamette in extra innings.
The aforementioned group helped TLU (38-9) claim the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference and NCAA Division III West Region championships, as the Bulldogs are set to play in the NCAA Division III World Series for the first time in program history this week.
The Division III World Series is slated for Friday – Tuesday at Neuroscience Group Field at Fox Cities Stadium in Appleton, Wisconsin.
TLU opens the Division III World Series on Friday at 7:45 p.m. against College of Wooster (Ohio). Every TLU game in the DIII World Series will air live on KWED 1580 AM and Seguintoday.com. Friday’s broadcast starts at 7:30.