W&J Voted to Top Spot in PAC Baseball Preseason Poll (2024)

2/8/2024 12:00:00 PM

TRAFFORD, Pa. (pacathletics.org) -- Winners of four consecutive conference championships, Washington & Jefferson College was picked as the favorite to win the 2024 Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) title when the 2024 Preseason Baseball Coaches' Poll, along with the PAC Players to Watch list, was released Thursday.

The annual preseason poll collects votes from each of the league's 11 head coaches.

W&J, led by 22nd-year head coach Jeff Mountain, received 10 first-place votes and 100 points to finish first in the polling. Mountain led the Presidents to their fourth straight league crown,

11th claimed by W&J under Mountain and15th conference championship in program history last spring. After earning the top seed for the PAC Tournament, the Presidents went 3-0 in the tournament to secure the championship.

Mountain, who was named the PAC Coach of the Year for the 11th time following the season, led the Presidents into the NCAA Regionals for the 10th time in program history. W&J posted a 1-2 record in the Regional.

Grove City College, skippered by eighth-year head coach Matt Royer, ranked second in the poll after gathering 87 points and one first-place vote. Allegheny Collegeand seventh-year head coach Brandon Crum placed third in the rankings with 82 points.

Coming in fourth in the poll was Westminster College with 72 points, just ahead of last year's PAC Tournament runner-up Saint Vincent College, who secured 67 points to come in fifth. Chatham University was sixth with 54 points, followed by Waynesburg University in seventh (44), Thiel College in eighth (33), Bethany College (26) in ninth, Geneva College (24) and Franciscan University (16).

The Players to Watch list features 26 who were honored with All-PAC recognition in 2023, including seven who earned First Team accolades. Also on the list is Grove City sophom*ore Nick Sampson (Venetia, Pa./Peters Township), who was the PAC Newcomer of the Year last spring.

The Wolverine outfielder started in all 37 games he played in and batted .352 with nine doubles and four triples among his 51 hits. Sampson scored 41 runs and knocked in 27 while also drawing 22 walks and posted a .442 on-base percentage.

Also a Second Team All-PAC selection, Sampson played flawless defense, handling all 47 chances without an error.

The 2024 PAC Championship Tournament expands to a six-team, double-elimination tournament for the first time this season. The tournament is scheduled to begin Wednesday, May 8 and run through Saturday, May 11 and be hosted at W&J's Ross Memorial Park

The PAC Championship Tournament winner will earn the conference’s automatic qualifying bid to the NCAA Division III Championship. Selections for the Division III Championship are scheduled to be announced Monday, May 13 with regional preliminary round play slated for Thursday-Monday, May 16-20. Regional champions will compete in the Super Regionals, a best-of-three series, to determine the eight participants in this year’s Division III College World Series, scheduled for Friday-Thursday, May 31-June 6. The Division III College World Series will be held at Classic Park in Eastlake, Ohio.

2024 PAC Baseball Preseason Coaches' Poll
School (first-place votes)Points2023 Records
1. W&J (10)10032-14, 17-3 PAC
2. Grove City (1)8730-11, 16-4 PAC
3. Allegheny8220-16, 13-7 PAC
4. Westminster7220-20, 13-7 PAC
5. Saint Vincent6722-18, 13-7 PAC
6. Chatham5419-18, 10-10 PAC
7. Waynesburg4414-24, 9-11 PAC
8. Thiel3311-28, 5-15 PAC
9. Bethany2618-22, 4-16 PAC
10. Geneva2416-23, 7-13 PAC
11. Franciscan166-28, 3-17 PAC

2024 PAC Baseball Players to Watch

Allegheny
NameYr.Pos.Hometown/High School
Tyson Bryant-DawsonJr.OF/POakland, Calif./Manvel (Texas)
Ryan DoughertySr.OFWexford, Pa./North Allegheny
Brent HerrmannSr.PCanfield, Ohio/Canfield
Brady NolinJr.IFCumberland, Maine/Greely
Mark SchweickertJr.PRichmond, Va./John Randolph Tucker
Bethany
NameYr.Pos.Hometown/High School
JT HubertJr.OF/PGreen, Ohio/Green
Trey MantleSr.PGroveport, Ohio/Groveport Madison
Zach PressnellJr.PPickerington, Ohio/Pickerington North
Nick RoellSr.OF/PPittsburgh, Pa./Seton LaSalle
Josh SpeakerSr.IF/PSteubenville, Ohio/Indian Creek
Chatham
NameYr.Pos.Hometown/High School
Jake BredlSr.3BPittsburgh, Pa./Shaler
Tyler CoteJr.C/PPittsburgh, Pa./North Hills
Benny DottleSr.SSNew Castle, Pa./Shenango
Dawson MorrowJr.PHarmony, Pa./Seneca Valley
Drew SchreckJr.PLodi, Ohio/Cloverleaf
Franciscan
NameYr.Pos.Hometown/High School
Josiah BodieFr.OF/PPawleys Island, S.C./Waccamaw
Peter FalconiteSr.2BLincroft, N.J./Christian Brothers Academy
Wade StoehrJr.3B/PLewisville, Ohio/Monroe Central
Geneva
NameYr.Pos.Hometown/High School
Kirk BearjarSo.1BSummerville, Pa./Forest Hills
Ryan ConoverSo.PBaden, Pa./Ambridge
Tim HermansenSr.OFLancaster, Pa./Penn Manor
Zack SackettJr.CBethel Park, Pa./Bethel Park
DJ TorunoSr.2BMenifee, Calif./Paloma Valley
Grove City
NameYr.Pos.Hometown/HighSchool
Nick GuidasSr.LHPGibsonia, Pa./Pine-Richland
Josh MinnichJr.OFMechanicsburg, Pa./Cumberland Valley
Nick SampsonSo.OFVenetia, Pa./Peters Township
Luke VittoneJr.SSSeven Fields, Pa./Eden Christian
Marcus WilliamsSr.IFSewickley, Pa./Eden Christian
Saint Vincent
NameYr.Pos.Hometown/High School
LJ EvansJr.OFNew Brighton, Pa./Our Lady of the Sacred Heart
Derek HaldJr.CApollo, Pa./Kiski Area
Michael KlingensmithGrad.RHPMurrysville, Pa./Franklin Regional
Jeremy KreuzwieserSr.RHPCanfield, Ohio/Ursuline
Billy PerrozJr.1BVandergrift, Pa./Kiski Area
Thiel
NameYr.Pos.Hometown/High School
Calvin CackowskiSo.C/3BWickliffe, Ohio/Wickliffe
Nick JacobsSr.1B/3BNew Castle, Pa./Union
Seth JohnsonGrad.Util.Magnolia, Ohio/Tuscawaras Valley
Alec KatonSr.PAshtabula, Ohio/Edgewood
Mike SittigSr.SS/2BMonaca, Pa./Central Valley
W&J
NameYr.Pos.Hometown/High School
Dante DiMatteoJr.P/OFPittsburgh, Pa./Fox Chapel
Drew GarthJr.OFGlenshaw, Pa./North Hills (Seton Hill)
Jacob LaDucaJr.SSClarence, N.Y./Canisius
Nolan LutzSr.1B/OFMcDonald, Pa./South Fayette
Waynesburg
NameYr.Pos.Hometown/High School
Mike BellSr.3BHerminie, Pa./Yough
Seth BurgdoltJr.CTaylorstown, Pa./McGuffey
Alec EngelmoreJr.OF/PPittsburgh, Pa./Shaler
Ethan ErhardSo.PGreensburg, Pa./Hempfield
Dalton LuceySo.PWaynesburg, Pa./West Greene
Westminster
NameYr.Pos.Hometown/High School
Kolton BanfiSr.RHPHarrisville, Pa./Franklin
Braeden CampbellJr.IFGlenshaw, Pa./Shaler
Carter Chinn5thUtilityGrove City, Pa./Grove City
Logan MurgenovichSr.IFAliquippa, Pa./Central Valley
Jake VitaleJr.LHPNew Castle, Pa./Union
W&J Voted to Top Spot in PAC Baseball Preseason Poll (2024)

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