Contributing Writer, Lamont Hinson CIAA Spring Sports


Rams claim their third straight CIAA title

Congratulations WSSU Baseball Team. Roll Rams! Roll.

Congratulations WSSU Baseball Team. Roll Rams! Roll.

On the third and final day of competition at the 2013 CIAA Spring Sports Festival, Winston-Salem State University defeated Chowan University 9-1 in the championship game to claim their third consecutive conference title at the Whaley Colbert Field on the campus of VSU. The Rams finished 3-0 during the tournament in order to hoist the championship plaque.

WSSU wasted no time getting on the scoreboard with three runs in the first inning. Chowan went three up and three down in the top of the first. The Rams produced three hits and three runs in the bottom of the first, including a RBI double from Tyler Hickernell.

Both teams went scoreless in the second and third innings. The Hawks earned a run in the fourth off a RBI single from Evan Holton. The hit from Holton scored Brandon Mack from third base. The inning came to a close with one run, two hits, an error, and two left on base. Unfortunately, that would be the only run generated by Chowan in the contest.

Winston-Salem State responded with two runs in the fifth and four runs in the sixth to secure a victory. Neither team scored after the sixth inning. First baseman Aaron Jones had clutch day at the plate for WSSU with four hits off five at-bats, three runs scored and a RBI.

Hickernell controlled the game on the mound and picked up the win. He pitched eight innings with five strikeouts, only allowing six hits and one run scored en route to being named Tournament MVP. Seth Mahaffey checked in for the save in the ninth. He struck out two, walked one, and had one ground out.

The Rams earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Division II playoffs and await the tournament seeding announcement for their opponent.

Here is a complete breakdown of the 2013 CIAA All-Tournament Baseball Team:

2013 CIAA Baseball All-Tournament Team

NAME                                                 POSITION                                        SCHOOL

Colton Gunn                                    Pitcher                                              Virginia State

Levi Grassley                                    Third Base                                       Winston-Salem State

Nicholas Christopher                    Short Stop                                       Virginia State

Tyler Hickernell                               Pitcher/DH                                      Winston-Salem State

John Hunter                                     First Base                                         Chowan

Aaron Jones                                     First Base                                         Winston-Salem State

Blake Leebrick                                 Catcher                                            Chowan

Percy Evans                                      First Base                                         Virginia State

Ryan Moore                                     Designated Hitter                        Chowan

Evan Holton                                      Outfield                                           Chowan

Rafael Gonzalez                              Second Base                                  Winston-Salem State

Josh Markins                                    Utility                                                Virginia State

2013 CIAA Baseball Tournament MVP

Tyler Hickernell Pitcher/DH          Winston-Salem State

By the way, Winston-Salem State University Rams baseball has cracked the Collegiate Baseball Magazone’s Top 30 in the new baseball poll for the week of April 22, 2013.
The Rams come in tied for the 30th position with Angelo State and Sonoma State. WSSU took home its third consecutive CIAA Championship over the weekend, with a 9-1 win over Chowan.

WSSU, 12-6 winners over Wingate, will play at Norfolk State (May 1st), at Mount Olive (May 5th) and at Francis Marion (May 6th) before the NCAA Division II Regionals , May 16-19.

Rams focus on winning third CIAA baseball conference tournament. Learn more here.

Kevin Ritsche

Kevin Ritsche

Winston-Salem State University head baseball coach Kevin Ritsche earned the CIAA’s top coaching honor, and freshman Jordan Carlton and seniors Tyler Hickernell and Travis Moore were named first team All-CIAA, while Kyle Boraski and Carlton were named to the CIAA’s All-Rookie team, as announced at the 2013 CIAA Spring Sports Banquet in Petersburg, VA.

The WSSU Rams had a total of eight players with All-CIAA honors for the 2013 season.

Ritsche earned CIAA Baseball Coach of the Year honors after leading his team to a 34-8 overall record heading into the 2013 Spring Sports Festival. The Rams earned the top seed with a 17-1 CIAA record.

Jordan Carlton (5′10, Fr., Exercise Science, Wilkesboro, NC) was named to the CIAA’s first team as a left handed pitcher. Carlton is 5-0 for the Rams with a 3.48 ERA in 41.1 innings pitched and is third on the team in strikeouts with 43.

Tyler Hickernell (6′3, Sr., Accounting, Thomasville, NC) was named first team All-CIAA as the designated hitter. Hickernell is batting .341 with 42 hits, 13 doubles, one triple. He has a team high nine home runs and is tied for the team lead in runs batted in with 49.

Travis Moore (5′8, Sr., Rehabilitation Studies, Greensboro, NC) was named first team All-CIAA for left field. Moore is hitting a robust .407 with 66 runs scored, seven doubles and eight triples to go with 31 runs batted in.

Aaron Jones (6′2, Sr., History, Kernersville, NC), the 2012 CIAA Player of the Year, was named to the CIAA’s second team as first baseman. Jones is batting .386 with 61 hits and 47 runs scored. He has13 doubles, one triple and one home run to go with 38 runs batted in.

Levi Grassley  (6′1, Jr., Sport Management, Cameron, MO) was named the second team All-CIAA third baseman. Grassley is hitting .377 with 58 hits, 49 runs15 doubles and four home runs, while driving in 38 rbi’s.

Paco Martin (5′11, Sr., Business Administration, San Pedro de Marcoris, Dominican Republic) is the second team All-CIAA shortstop, despite leading the nation in hits. Martin is batting .351 with 67 hits and 40 runs scored. Martin has 12 doubles and 33 runs batted in.

Brandon Harrison (6′0, Sr., Economics, Kernersville, NC) was named second team All-CIAA at the centerfield position for WSSU. Harrison is batting .342 with 50 hits and 47 runs scored. He has nine doubles, four triples and one home run to go with 33 runs batted in.

Rounding out the WSSU Rams honors is Kyle Boreaski who earned All-Rookie Team honors as a right handed pitcher. Boraski is 6-0 with a 3.22 ERA in 44.2 innings pitched and is second on the team in strikeouts with 44.

The Rams are once again making their presence felt in both baseball and softball. Learn how here. The men’s baseball team with a 34-9 record is once again vying for a conference championship and a playoff spot for a national title. Read more.

John Dell’s Ram Ramblings takes an in-depth look.

Chancellor Donald Reaves

Chancellor Donald Reaves

In a recent article published in the Charlotte News and Observer, WSSU Chancellor Donald J. Reaves was among several Historically Black College and University (HBCU)  leaders to voice their concerns to North Carolina Senators Kay Hagan and Richard Burr, during an HBCU Summit, about the need for federal help to allow students to continue their education. Learn more here.

Winston-Salem State University (WSSU) is excited to announce the addition of its Six Sigma Fundamentals course to be offered in May 2013.  Due to its continued popularity over the last three years, this course on quality initiatives from the Office of Continuing Education and Summer Sessions is being offered in the summer for the first [...]

Winston-Salem State University has long been recognized as a leading public university with a increasingly diverse student body. WSSU was recognized in a recent ranking among the top HBCU institutions. Learn more here.

As an assignment, a WSSU student majoring in Social Work decided to do something that would impact her community. Learn what she did here.

WSSU Launches New Campus Safety Campaign

Winston-Salem State University is always in the process of examining and refining its safety procedures to maintain a safe living, learning and working environment. To that end, WSSU has launched a new Campus Safety Campaign to raise awareness about what students, faculty, and staff can do to keep the campus community safe. Below are some [...]

Jameze Massey was one of the most explosive players in the CIAA last season. The WSSU alumnus has signed to play for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League. Learn more here.

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