April 1, 2006
2006 BASEBALL REVIEW
2006 BASEBALL REVIEW
An offense that batted a robust .353 and a pitching staff with a cumulative earned run average of 3.36 combined to make the 2006 Augustana baseball season a rousing success. Veteran head coach Greg Wallace, completing his ninth season at the helm of his alma mater, led the Vikings to a 31-10 overall record and a 15-6 mark in the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin. That was good for a second place finish in the league standings. The Blue and Gold also ended the year ranked 22nd in the final NCAA Division III national poll.
Senior third baseman
He batted .420 with 63 hits in 150 at-bats while scoring 41 runs, clubbing 16 doubles, one triple and five home runs along with those 60 RBI. He managed to walk nine times and stole four bases. Along with the school record for single season RBI, he also set a new career mark with 142, breaking Jason Fosdick’s record of 139 set from 1997-00. He finished the year ranked fourth in NCAA Division III in RBI with an average of 1.54 per game.
While Phillips was the top run producer, he was not the only weapon in the Augustana arsenal as no fewer than seven Vikings batted better than .343. Freshman designated hitter
Junior leftfielder Chris Pietroski (Buffalo Grove HS, Buffalo Grove, Ill.) at .383, freshman first baseman Kevin Ryan (Moline HS, Moline, Ill.) at .379, freshman second baseman John Wagle (Rock Island HS, Rock Island, Ill.) at .350 and freshman shortstop Mark Ramos (United Township HS, East Moline, Ill.) at .343 all contributed greatly to the offense.
While the Vikings were scoring runs with ease (they had 16 games where they broke double digits), the pitching staff was led by the one-two punch of senior Andrew Setter (Rockford Boylan HS, Loves Park, Ill.) and junior Kevin Kuntz (Streator HS, Streator, Ill.). Setter went 9-1 with a 1.54 earned run average in 81 2/3 innings worth of work. He struck out 73 and also picked up three saves. Kuntz was 7-2 with a 1.39 earned run average in 58 1/3 innings with 43 strikeouts and four complete games. Opponents batted just .189 (40-212) against him. Kuntz finished sixth and Setter 11th in the final NCAA Division III statistical ranking in earned run average.
Augustana was ranked in the top 20 of NCAA Division III most of the season before ending up 22nd. After starting the season 14-2 overall, the Vikings went through a stretch in early April where they lost five of seven games to fall to 16-7. That was heading into an Easter weekend series with North Park and Augustana swept the Chicago Vikings and promptly won 14 of the next 15 games.
Wallace’s crew was 31-9 heading into the CCIW tournament on the weekend of May 11-13 in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Rain forced the postponement of the first two days and made the tournament a single elimination affair. Augustana dropped a 4-1 decision to Illinois Wesleyan on Saturday, May 13 and failed to gain an at-large berth into the NCAA Division III national tournament.
Still, it was a tremendous season as the record of 31-10 is the fourth highest victory total ever produced at Augustana. Over the past two years the Vikings have gone 64-21 and the seniors on this year’s team were 117-51 overall and 53-31 in CCIW action.
Eight Augustana players were rewarded with all-conference recognition at the end of the year. Setter was named the co-“Pitcher of the Year” in the CCIW after posting a 6-0 record in league play with a 1.13 ERA in 48 1/3 innings.
Joining Setter on the first team were Kuntz, Vroman, Phillips, Ryan and Hansen. Pitcher Brandon Engle (Moline HS, Moline, Ill.) and Pietroski were tabbed for second team honors.
Phillips, Vroman and Setter were first team all-Central Region selections by the American Baseball Coaches Association while Kuntz was a second team pick and Hansen made the third team.
Wallace, who has been at the helm for each of the five 30 victory seasons in Augustana history, is now 264-118 overall with the Vikings and 112-73 in the CCIW since he took over in 1998. Counting his four year stint as the head coach at Frostburg State University in Frostburg, Maryland from 1992-95, Wallace has an overall college coaching record of 342-167.
2006 COLLEGE CONFERENCE OF ILLINOIS & WISCONSIN FINAL STANDINGS
23 (1 tie)
2006 CCIW BASEBALL TOURNAMENT
May 13-14 in Kenosha, Wisconsin
Saturday, May 13
Carthage 10, North Park 1
Illinois Wesleyan 4, Augustana 1
Sunday, May 14
Carthage 6, Illinois Wesleyan 4
NOTE: Because of rain the CCIW tournament was shortened from double to single elimination.
2006 AUGUSTANA BASEBALL SUPERLATIVES
NCAA DIVISION III ALL-AMERICAN:
NCAA DIVISION III ALL-CENTRAL REGION: First team –
CCIW “PITCHER OF THE YEAR”: Andrew Setter (co-winner along with Scott Evosevich of Carthage)
CCIW ALL-CONFERENCE: First team – Andrew Setter, P…Kevin Kuntz, P…Jake Vroman, CF…
30 VICTORY MARK: Team was 31-10 as Vikings went over 30 wins for just the fifth time in school history.
NCAA DIVISION III NATIONAL RANKING: 22nd
NCAA DIVISION III REGIONAL RANKING: Third in Central Region
AUGUSTANA’S MOST OUTSTANDING DEFENSIVE PLAYER: Jake Vroman, CF
AUGUSTANA’S MOST OUTSTANDING OFFENSIVE PLAYER:
AUGUSTANA’S MOST OUTSTANDING PITCHER: Andrew Setter, P
AUGUSTANA’S MOST IMPROVED PL
CCIW BATTER OF THE WEEK:
CCIW PITCHER OF THE WEEK: Kevin Kuntz on 03/07/06 and Andrew Setter on 03/28/06
AUGUSTANA SINGLE SEASON SCHOOL RECORD – MOST RBI: 60,
AUGUSTANA CAREER SCHOOL RECORD – MOST RBI: 142,
CCIW INDIVIDUAL STATISTICAL LEADER – EARNED
CCIW INDIVIDUAL STATISTICAL LEADER – RBI: 31,
CCIW INDIVIDUAL STATISTICAL LEADER – DOUBLES: 8,
CCIW INDIVIDUAL STATISTICAL LEADER – TRIPLES: 3, Jake Vroman
NCAA DIVISION III STATISTICAL RANKING – RBI: 4th –
NCAA DIVISION III STATISTICAL RANKING – ERA: 6th – Kevin Kuntz at 1.39