Baseball Has Record Eight Named to All-Ivy First Team
HANOVER, N.H. — The All-Ivy League Baseball Teams were announced today by the conference office, and Dartmouth had eight players on the first team, the most ever for one team in league history. Freshman designated hitter Joe Purritano was named the Ivy League Rookie of the Year as well, while the Big Green had a total of 10 players earn All-Ivy honors.
Princeton’s Mike Ford became the first player in Ivy history to be selected as both the Player of the Year and the Pitcher of the Year, and his teammate, Alec Keller, won the Blair Bat Award for posting the highest batting average over the 20 league games (.395).
Joining Purritano on the All-Ivy First Team were senior outfielder Ennis Coble, senior pitcher Michael Johnson, junior outfielder Jeff Keller, sophomore third baseman Nick Lombardi, sophomore catcher Matt MacDowell, sophomore reliever Thomas Olson and sophomore second baseman Matt Parisi. Senior pitcher Kyle Hunter was tabbed for the second team, and senior pitcher Cole Sulser earned honorable mention.
Purritano quickly developed into one of the Ivy League’s top hitters during his freshman campaign. The native of Woodcliff Lake, N.J., finished the season with a .343 average, five home runs and 30 RBIs in 108 at-bats. In conference play, he led the league with a .719 slugging percentage and tied for top honors with all five of his four-baggers while tying for second with 18 RBIs and finishing fourth with a .368 average. Four of his long balls came in one weekend against Brown as he was named a Louisville Slugger National Player of the Week by Collegiate Baseball, the first known Big Green player to earn the honor.
Coble, a product of Atlanta, Ga., earned his third All-Ivy accolade, all of which were at different positions as he was a second-teamer as a utility player two years ago as a sophomore and a first-teamer last year as a designated hitter. A consistent performer throughout his four years, the lefty swinger hit .325 this season with 12 doubles, a triple and two homers while scoring 33 runs and driving in 22. He was perfect on the base paths, swiping 11 bases in 11 attempts, and did not commit an error in left field in 58 chances. Coble ranked among the Ivy League’s top 10 in eight offensive categories, the highest being third in runs scored. For his career, he hit .328 with 182 hits, 37 doubles, 10 triples and five homers.
Dartmouth had many terrific individual performers on the mound, but none as impressive as Johnson who led the league with a perfect 7-0 record in nine starts and was third with a 1.82 ERA. The native of Georgetown, Mass., held opponents to a paltry .208 average over 59.1 innings, striking out 47 against just 13 walks. Currently the southpaw is among the top 50 in the nation in ERA (46th), fewest hits allowed per nine innings (6.52, 47th) and WHIP (0.94, 28th). Back in March, he was recognized as the league’s Pitcher of the Week after defeating both North Dakota State and Bradley, fanning a career-high 12 batters against the former in a 6-0 victory. Johnson finished his career with a record of 15-2 for an .882 winning percentage, the second-best in Dartmouth history.
Keller was an offensive force all season for the Big Green as he led the league with 21 doubles, four triples, 41 RBIs, 39 runs scored, 99 total bases and a .702 slugging percentage, the last of which puts him sixth in the nation. The Atherton, Calif., product also hit .369 (third in Ivy League) with six home runs and a .453 on-base percentage. An honorable mention selection a year ago, Keller twice was named the Ivy Player of the Week and broke a 25-year-old school record by swatting those 21 two-baggers in just 40 games, making him the nation’s leader in doubles per game (0.53). His 31 extra-base hits are also a Dartmouth record, and to top it off, he was perfect in eight attempts stealing bases.
Manning the hot corner all season was Lombardi, out of Saugus, Calif., as he established himself as the league’s finest fielder while providing pop at the plate. He finished the year batting .294 with 12 doubles, a triple, four home runs, 26 runs and 39 RBIs, the last of which was second only to Keller in the league. Lombardi began the year by earning the Most Outstanding Player award at the Dairy Queen Classic, for which he was also chosen as the Ivy League Player of the Week. In the field, he did not commit an error in any of his first 28 games this year, extending his errorless streak to 56 dating back to his rookie campaign.
Taking over the starting duties behind the plate as a sophomore, MacDowell excelled with a .301 average, two homers and 26 RBIs in 32 games. His work with the pitching staff was even more important to the Big Green’s success on the diamond, however, as he guided Dartmouth to its best team ERA — 2.75 — in 42 years. The New England native from Falmouth, Maine, threw out six of 22 base stealers as well, while his 13 RBIs in league play were the most for any of the league’s backstops.
Olson was one of those pitchers to benefit from MacDowell’s presence behind the plate, closing the door on many a Big Green victory. A second-team selection as a rookie last year, Olson matched his save total with six while recording a 2-0 record with a paltry 1.15 ERA over 14 appearances spanning 15.2 innings. The Manhattan, Kan., product did not surrender a single run in his first 13 outings, and opponents hit .211 against him as he walked just two batters and fanned 11.
Parisi began the year as Dartmouth’s shortstop, but a teammate’s injury had him move to the other side of second base to man the keystone position. He flourished in the role, batting .329 with 12 doubles, one homer, 31 runs and 15 RBIs primarily out of the leadoff slot in the lineup. In conference play, the native of Clermont, Fla., was the only middle infielder in the league to play flawless defense, fielding 85 chances without an error. Parisi also matched his overall average at .329 against the Ivy teams, and his 55 hits for the entire season tied him for the league lead.
A second-team performer for the second time in his career, Hunter went 4-1 with a 1.83 ERA to rank fourth in the league. Opponents hit .228 against him as he struck out 52 batters in 54 innings. Sulser, a first-team member two years ago and second-team pitcher in 2010, returned from Tommy John surgery to lead the Big Green with 56 strikeouts in 53.2 innings with a 5-3 record and a 2.52 ERA to earn honorable mention.
For the entire list of All-Ivy selections, please visit the Ivy League website.
Notes: The only teams to ever has as many as six players on the All Ivy First Team were Yale in 1994 and Princeton in 2000 ... Dartmouth’s 10 All-Ivy honors were also the most among the eight schools in the Ancient Eight ... the Big Green have had 97 first-team selections since the league first named a team in 1960, the most of any school ... since the divisional format was adopted in 1993, Dartmouth has had 60 members on the first team; Brown is second with 41.