LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. -- The 2018 ABCA/Rawlings NCAA Div. III All-Region teams and Regional Players of the Year have been announced and the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference placed 10 student-athletes on the list.
Nathan Malinovsky of Texas Lutheran University continued his strong awards season, earning West Region Pitcher of the Year honors for the second time this season. He also earned the award from D3baseball.com on Monday, May 21.
Texas Lutheran led the SCAC with four players named to the ABCA All-Region teams, placing four student-athletes on the first team. Centenary College and Trinity University both added a pair of honorees, while Southwestern University and the University of Dallas each had one player recognized.
The Bulldogs' four first-team players each earned the same honor Monday from D3baseball.com.
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 teammate Dylan Drgac.
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.
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.
Jeff Lonnecker of Trinity University was the SCAC's only second-team honoree. He also earned second-team honors from D3baseball.com.
Lonnecker, a junior pitcher from Bellaire, Texas, ended his 2018 campaign with the second-best ERA in the league, 1.90. Going 47.1 innings on the mound, Lonnecker struck out 68 batters, averaging 12.93 per nine innings, which is the third-best mark in SCAC history for a single season. He closed out the season with a 4-0 record, while grabbing three saves
Centenary College placed two pitchers on third team, Matthew Devillier and Kaleb Kirk, joined by Trinity's Rafe Chaumette, Southwestern's Seth Sparks and Nathan Patton of Dallas.
Devillier, a junior pitcher from Lake Charles, La., earned the recognition after posting a 1.91 ERA this season, third-best in the SCAC. He led the league with three shutouts for the season, including two in conference play and earned six wins. Earlier this season, he recorded a nine inning no-hitter. This was the first for Centenary since joining Division III.
Kirk, a senior pitcher from Nacogdoches, Texas, ended the season ranked top five in the league in ERA (2.60), wins (8) and strikeouts (76). His record of 8-3 this season was the best among the Gents.
Chaumette, a sophomore outfielder from Sugar Land, Texas, finished the season with a .392 batting average which ranks fourth in the league. He recorded 22 extra base hits, including five triples and four home runs, for a .596 slugging percentage. Chaumette scored 44 runs and drove in 47, both numbers that rank top three in the SCAC.
Patton, a sophomore from McKinney, Texas, finished his season with a conference-best batting average of .450. This is tied for 20th all time in SCAC history for a single season and is the best mark in the conference since 2012. Patton recorded 63 hits in 140 at bats, while scoring 39 runs and driving in 43. He totaled 16 extra base hits for a slugging percentage of .600. He also reached base at a .521 clip, which leads the SCAC.
Sparks, a freshman second baseman from Cedar Park, Texas, opened up his collegiate career well, posting a .311 batting average with 25 runs, 25 RBI and a pair of stolen bases.
To see the full ABCA release, click here.