Southland Conference announces 2018 Baseball All-Academic Teams

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FRISCO, Texas – McNeese senior Joe Provenzano and Sam Houston State graduate Dakota Mills are the 2018 Southland Conference Baseball Student-Athletes of the Year, the league announced Thursday along with the all-academic teams. All yearly league awards are presented by Ready Nutrition.

Provenzano, a senior second baseman, earned Student-Athlete of the Year honors for the second consecutive season. The Downers Grove, Ill., native was named to the Google Cloud Academic All-District team and became the first Cowboy to repeat as a Google Cloud Academic All-America selection, earning third-team honors for the second straight year. He is just the third player in program history to earn the accolade. On the field, he led the team in batting with a .336 average along with a team-high 16 doubles. He became the school's all-time hits leader and ended his career with 254 career base hits as well as tying a career mark with 222 games played. He graduated with a degree in finance and accounting, and a GPA of 3.76.

Mills was the 2018 Southland Relief Pitcher of the Year, racking up the second-most saves in a single season by a Bearkat with 15. He led the team with 74 strikeouts and converted 15 of 17 save chances, with 12 of them coming over multiple innings. He has graduated with a 3.63 undergraduate GPA in finance and is pursuing a master’s degree in business administration.

Sam Houston State leads the conference with six total selections, paced by repeat all-academic pick Seth Ballew. Central Arkansas earned four spots, including three automatic first-team selections in Hunter Strong, William Hancock and Tyler Gray. Houston Baptist and Southeastern Louisiana garnered a trio of selections each. UIW, Northwestern State and Texs A&M-Corpus Christi each collected two all-academic accolades while Abilene Christian and McNeese earned one apiece.

Southland All-Academic teams are voted on by head coaches, sports information directors and academic and compliance staff members from each member school. Student-athletes must possess a 3.00 cumulative GPA, have completed one full academic year at the nominating institution and participated in at least 50 percent of the team's competition (excluding pitchers) to qualify. Nominees who were first team all-conference or Google Cloud Academic All-District selections are automatically named Southland All-Academic.

The Southland Conference awards committee, which consists of one administrator from each of the 13 member schools, votes for the Student-Athlete of the Year. Student-Athlete of the Year candidates must have earned at least a 3.20 GPA and demonstrated athletics achievement for at least two years at the nominating institution.

2018 Southland Conference Baseball Co-Student-Athletes of the Year: Joe Provenzano, McNeese & Dakota Mills, Sam Houston State

2018 Southland Conference Baseball All-Academic First Team

Name

School

Cl.

GPA

Major

Dalon Farkas*

Abilene Christian

Jr.

3.33

Accounting

Hunter Strong*2

Central Arkansas

Jr.

3.81

Business Administration

William Hancock*

Central Arkansas

Jr.

3.46

Business Administration

Tyler Gray*

Central Arkansas

Sr.

3.37

Physical Education/Teacher Education

Matthew McCollough*

Houston Baptist

Gr.

3.53

Accounting

Kyle Bergeron*

UIW

So.

3.39

Business Administration/Finance

Joe Provenzano*^$3

McNeese

Sr.

3.76

Finance and Accounting

David Fry*2

Northwestern State

Sr.

3.18

History

Drew Avans*2

Southeastern Louisiana

Sr.

3.39

General Studies

Itchy Burts

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

Jr.

3.82

Mechanical Engineering

Blake Chisolm

Sam Houston State

So.

3.93

General Business

Dakota Mills

Sam Houston State

Gr.

3.63

Finance

2018 Southland Conference Baseball All-Academic Second Team

Name

School

Cl.

GPA

Major

Seth Ballew2

Sam Houston State

Sr.

3.84

Banking & Financial Inst.

Corey Gaconi

Southeastern Louisiana

Jr.

3.89

Marketing

Jonathon Ducoff

Houston Baptist

Sr.

3.75

Finance

Jerry Maddox

Northwestern State

Jr.

3.03

Business

Riley Gossett

Sam Houston State

Jr.

3.80

Accounting

Hayden Wesneski

Sam Houston State

So.

3.82

General Business

Nick Mikolajchak

Sam Houston State

So.

3.93

General Business

Tyler Depreta-Johnson

Houston Baptist

Sr.

3.27

Kinesiology

Carlisle Koestler

Southeastern Louisiana

Jr.

3.33

Kinesiology

Mark Whitehead2

UIW

Sr.

3.71

Business Administration/Marketing

Harrison DiNicola

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

Jr.

3.17

Business

Justin McCarty

Central Arkansas

Gr.

3.80

M.B.A.

* First Team All-Conference

2 Two-time all-academic selection

3 Three-time all-academic selection

^ Google Cloud Academic All-District

$ Google Cloud Academic All-American