ICC Athletic News

Baseball Team and Coach Win Honors

EAST PEORIA – The Illinois Central College baseball team received a wide variety of postseason honors as the Mid-West Athletic Conference and Region XXIV released their respective honor teams. In the M-WAC voting, ICC head coach Brett Kelley was voted Coach of the Year after leading the Cougars to a 35-24 overall record and a second-place finish in the M-WAC with a 23-9 mark. The 23 wins are the most conference wins in school history, eclipsing the 2005 team’s 22-2 mark in the old Collegiate Conference of Central Illinois.

“It’s a tremendous honor,” Kelley said. “But it’s not my doing. I’m incredibly fortunate to have great players and a great coaching staff that helps make those players even better.”

Freshman shortstop Mason McCoy also brought home some individual honors as well. McCoy was shared M-WAC Freshman of the Year honors with Heartland’s Derek Bangert. He was also the only Cougar named first-team all-M-WAC and the only representative on the 12-man all-Region XXIV team. The Washington native finished his freshman year hitting .390 with 18 doubles, 6 triples, 5 home runs, 51 RBIs, 70 runs scored and 30 stolen bases.

“Mason stepped into a giant void left by (2013 all-Region XXIV selection) Justin Fletcher,” Kelley said. “He didn’t just meet our expectations of filling that void, he execeeded them. We can’t wait to see what the future holds for him.”

The Cougars placed two sophomores on the all-M-WAC second team. Left-handed pitcher Matt Farrington (Orland Park Sandburg) was one of three pitchers named to the team after finishing the year 5-3 with a 1.73 ERA. Joining Farrington was outfielder J.P. Meyer (Williamsville), who finished the year hitting .303 with 15 doubles, 2 triples, 4 home runs and tied the school record with 59 RBIs.

“J.P. and Matt were integral parts of our 2012 recruiting class,” Kelley said. “Those numbers are the kind of numbers we expected when we recruited them.”

Earning honorable-mention all-M-WAC honors were a pair of newcomers to the Cougars –  sophomore left-handed pitcher Jared Holloman (Morton), a transfer from Grace College, and freshman first baseman Jared McCunn (Eureka). Holloman posted a 3-3 record with a 1.50 ERA, 29 strikeouts and 3 walks in 30 innings pitched. McCunn, meanwhile, hit .347 with 11 doubles, 1 triple, 2 home runs and 34 RBIs for the Cougars.

“Those two are kids that we added late last summer and I don’t think we would have imagined either of them would have worked out as well as they did,” Kelley said. “It’s a credit to their hard work that they were able to both step right in and contribute.”