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Fairfield Ledger   Mt. Pleasant News
Neighbors Growing Together | Aug 22, 2017

All-GTNS boys’ large school baseball teams

By Bill Gatchel | Aug 04, 2017
Zach Londberg

Over the last four days, the sports editors from Mt. Pleasant and Washington and the Fairfield news editor have been highlighting athletes from the summer sports season.

We focused on the softball and baseball teams from the smaller schools Tuesday and Wednesday and yesterday, boys baseball players from the smaller schools were recognized.

Today, we wrap up our spotlight by looking at the All-Golden Triangle boys baseball players from the three large schools.

While only one school got close to an appearance in the state tournament, making the determination on who to select wasn’t easy, as each school has many athletes who deserve extra recognition.

Coach: Josh Allison, from Fairfield, has been a fixture in high school baseball for more than two decades.

He took the reins as head coach of the Trojans before the 2003 season, after serving as assistant coach for five years.

Allison led the Trojans to three conference titles in a row from 2013-15, and to district titles the past two seasons.

He has been remarkably consistent, winning at least 22 games per season during that five-year span.

In 2014, Allison coached Fairfield to a spot in the state tournament, a place the Trojans had not gone since 1979.

MVP: Senior Cam Baumann from Fairfield completed a five-year varsity career in Fairfield having struck out 344 batters, likely a school record.

His 78 punchouts were tops in the conference by a mile. He held hitters to a .206 average and posted a 2.18 earned run average.

He was not a one-dimensional player, either. Baumann hit .374 at the plate.

Pitcher: Graham Kuehl, a junior, was a workhorse for the Fairfield Trojans, starting more games than anyone else.

His seven victories were the most in the Southeast Conference. He posted a sparkling 2.11 ERA and held opposing hitters to .232. He figures to take the throne as the ace of the staff next year during his senior campaign.

Pitcher: Sophomore Zach Beason from Mt. Pleasant turned into one of the best pitchers in the Southeast Conference in 2017, going 5-2 with a 1.43 ERA and 30 strikeouts.

Beason wasn’t bad at the plate this year either He hit .292 on the year with 13 RBIs.

Infield: Austin Simpson, a sophomore Fairfield first baseman, provides one of the most potent bats in Coach Allison’s lineup.

His 54 RBIs led the conference, and his .507 on-base percentage was the best on the team.

He hit for power, amassing four long balls, but that didn’t mean he was a free swinger. He walked three times as often as he struck out (five).

Infield: Pat Canby went out in style during his senior baseball season at Mt. Pleasant.

He hit .495 with two home runs, 34 RBIs and a team-leading 42 runs and 18 doubles.

Canby also stole 16 bases in 19 attempts, which put him second on the team on the base paths.

Infield: Hunter Hoskins, a Fairfield junior, always found a way to get on base.

He batted .396 and hit four home runs. Allison commended his keen defensive work at third base, particularly late in the year.

Infield: Zac Ebeling supplied plenty of power to the Mt. Pleasant baseball team this season, hitting .405 with two home runs and a team-leading 36 RBIs.

The senior first basemen finished the year with seven doubles and two triples, and scored 29 runs for the SEC champions.

Ebeling gave Mt. Pleasant a one-run win with a walk-off homer against Pella June 17.

Catcher: Kosta Papazoglou is one of three Fairfield Trojan sophomores to make the All-GTNS team.

He led Fairfield in doubles with 15, and was second in the conference in runs batted in with 44.

His 24 walks were second in the conference, and explains how he was able to maintain such a high on-base percentage at .461.

Outfield: Zach Londberg is a senior from Washington who earned a spot on the second team All-Conference in the Southeast Iowa Conference.

He scored 25 runs on 35 hits this season, including one home run. He led the 18-16 Demons in RBIs with 32 and had a .337 batting average.

Outfield: Fairfield junior Cade Lisk was one of the most dependable outfielders in the conference.

He caught everything hit to him in center field, and made all the routine plays.

The junior batted .372, knocked in 18 runs and scored 23. He was also a highly capable pitcher, where he held opposing batters to a team-low .193 average.

Outfield: Junior Keegan Rich brought a lot of speed to the Panther outfield this season. He hit .329 with two runs scored and 16 stolen bases.

Despite hitting at the bottom of the lineup for most of the year, Rich managed to pick up 26 hits, which was tied for fourth on the Mt. Pleasant team.

Utility: As a senior from Washington, Collin Zear earned a spot on the first team All-Conference as well as Academic All-Conference in the SEC.

During the season, he scored 15 runs on 36 hits. He had a total of 22 RBIs and had an overall .324 batting average.

On the mound for the Demons, he had a 6-2 record walking 24 and striking out 23, giving him a 2.30 ERA.

Utility: Fairfield sophomore Tristin Waugh led the conference in home runs with seven.

He drove in 36 runs and posted an on-base percentage of .424. Waugh proved his versatility by switching to a new position — second base — after playing outfield and catching last year.

Utility: Cleanup man Cooper Huckabone hit .392 in his senior year at Mt. Pleasant with eight home runs, two triples and one home run.

Huckabone had one of the biggest RBIs of the year on June 15 when he hit a walk-off single against Keokuk in game one of a doubleheader.

 

— The All-Golden Triangle News Service teams are selected by sports editors Andy Krutsinger of the Mt. Pleasant News, Bill Gatchel of the Washington Evening Journal and news editor Andy Hallman from the Fairfield Ledger.

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