DALLAS - The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) announced its 2014 NCBWA All-South Region team on Thursday. A total of 11 Sunshine State Conference student-athletes were named to the team, and the Lions' Fran Whitten and Dylan Harris received First Team honors.
In addition, the SSC took home two of the top three awards, as Lynn's Sal Giardina, Jr. was named South Region Player of the Year, and Tampa's skipper Joe Urso was named the South Region Coach of the Year.
A native of Westborough, Mass., senior Fran Whitten was selected to the first team as a first baseman. The announcement came just hours after his selection to the Daktronics All-South Region First Team, and days after he was named to the All-Sunshine State First Team. Joining the green and gold during his senior year, Whitten ended his final playing season leading the conference with 11 homeruns and 110 total bases. In addition, he finished the year leading his team in numerous categories, including doubles, homeruns, RBI, slugging, and on-base percentage. As a first baseman, he also led the Lions in putouts, with 324.
Freshman Dylan Harris, a Land O' Lakes, Fla. native, was also tabbed to the Daktronics All-South Region First team earlier in the day, garnering a selection to the NCBWA All-South Region First Team by the close of business Thursday. Tabbed as the Sunshine State Freshman of the year, the rookie led all Sunshine State Conference freshmen in hitting on the year with a .366 average, also leading the SSC in hits and at-bats, tying for third overall in runs scored. He ended his freshman campaign with a team-leading 45 runs scored, 71 hits, and 13 stolen bases.
For the complete NCBWA All-Region team list, see below. For more on Whitten, Harris, and the Saint Leo baseball program, visit SaintLeoLions.com. Also, be sure to 'Like' the Lions on Facebook and 'Follow' Saint Leo Athletics on Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.
South Region Player of the Year: Sal Giardina, Jr., Lynn
South Region Pitcher of the Year: Jordan DeLorenzo, West Florida
South Region Coach of the Year: Joe Urso, Tampa
NCBWA Division II All-South Region First-Team
SP Jordan DeLorenzo, West Florida
SP Jimmy Gutowski, Eckerd
SP Preston Packrall, Tampa
RP Bill Mendek, Lynn
C Sal Giardina, Jr., Lynn
1B Fran Whitten, Saint Leo
2B Matthew Fears, Valdosta State
3B Cash Oliver, Tuskegee
SS Fernando Tanaka, Stillman
OF James Campbell, Albany State
OF Michael Danner, Tampa
OF Sheehan Planas-Arteaga, Barry
DH Stephen Dezzi, Tampa
UT Dylan Harris, Saint Leo
NCBWA Division II All-South Region Second-Team
SP Joseph Falletta, Stillman
SP David Heintz, Tampa
SP Michael Manley, Delta State
RP Tyler Valis, Stillman
C Carlos Leal, Delta State
1B Nick Baldelli-Boggs, Stillman
2B Orlando Rivera, Tampa
3B Chris Farrell, Palm Beach Atlantic
SS Mike Reed, Valdosta State
OF Dominic Brugnoni, Florida Southern
OF Jordan Chovanec, Delta State
OF Austin Southall, West Florida
DH Bryant Hayman, Valdosta State
UT Sean Plunkett, West Florida