Centenary's Diaz Takes Major Award, SCAC Places 10 on D3Baseball All-West Region Teams

Centenary's Diaz Takes Major Award, SCAC Places 10 on D3Baseball All-West Region Teams

LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. -- D3Baseball.com released the 2017 All-Region selections Tuesday and 10 Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference student-athletes were recognized alongside Centenary College Head Coach Mike Diaz.

Diaz led the team to a 35-10 record this season, including the school's first trip to a NCAA Division III tournament in any sport. The Gents' 2017 squad captured their first SCAC tournament title with a dominating win in the final game of this year's event. Centenary also captured the regular season title, posting a conference record of 15-3 this season.

After a historic season, Centenary placed seven on the teams, while also collecting the region's Coach of the Year award. Trinity University had two players recognized, while the University of Dallas rounded out the SCAC honorees with one.

Centenary's Chris Zapata, Michael Schimpf and Cole Lavergne earned first team honors.

Zapata, a catcher from Saratoga, Calif., dominated the SCAC offensively, leading the conference in total hits (70), doubles (17), home runs (12), runs batted in (71) and slugging percentage (.732).

Schimpf, an outfielder from Shreveport, La., finished the season with a league-leading .405 batting average, totaling 60 hits, 12 doubles, four triples, four home runs, as well as 47 RBI. His on base percentage of .547 led the conference.

Lavergne, a utility player from Sulpher, La., dominated both at the plate and on the mound for the Gents. He hit .305 for the season with 37 runs and 29 RBI. He also recorded a conference high of eight saves for the season, while also tallying 54 strikeouts in 60.1 innings pitched. He finished with a 4-2 record in 20 appearances.

Centenary placed three more Gents' on second team, Aaron Quintanilla, Kaleb Kirk and Matthew Devillier. They were joined by the Trinity duo of Scott Walters and Chris Tate.

Kirk, a starting pitcher from Nacogdoches, Texas, led the team with 95.1 innings pitched, striking out 90 batters on the season and posting an earned run average of 2.83.

Devillier is also a starting pitcher and previously earned the SCAC Pitcher of the Year award. The Lake Charles, La. native posted an 11-1 record for the season. He recorded a 2.98 ERA and struck out 59 in 87.2 innings.

Quintanilla, a short stop from Houston, Texas, led the conference with 56 runs, while tallying 55 hits. Those included 12 doubles, five triples and five home runs. He finished with a batting average of .320 for the season and a slugging percentage of .535.

Walters, a designated hitter from Tomball, Texas, held a .400 batting average which was second among SCAC players. He totaled 45 runs, 64 hits, and 30 RBI. He also had 23 extra base hits for the season.a

Tate, a relief pitcher from Chandler, Ariz., posted a 5-3 record with three saves in 2017. He recorded an ERA of 1.73 in 52.0 innings. He also averaged 13.5 strikesouts per nine innings, totaling 78 for the season.

Third team featured Centenary's Cody Crowder and Dallas' Jordan Stickler.

Crowder, a designated hitter from Shepherd, Texas, hit .382 in his first collegiate season, recording 65 hits and scoring 45 runs. He also drove in 41 RBI.

Stickler, an outfielder from Grand Rapids, Mich., hit .344 with 42 runs scored and nine RBI this year. He was second among the conference with 24 stolen bases.

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