CARBONDALE -- A trio of Aces were recognized for their oustanding baseball campaigns this season as members of the Southern Illinois Coaches Association All-Star Game.
The three, Aden Gill, Kaleb Applebey and Cade Newkirk, each made the trip to Southern Illinois University-Carbondale for the game on Tuesday.
Gill had a particularly excellent campaign a top the Aces batting order. The to be senior slashed for team-bests (minimum of 20 at bats) in BA (.364), hits (24), runs (25), as well as OBP (.488), this season. Gill was named to the All-Big Eight Conference team in recognition for his standout junior season.
Applebey served a dual-purpose for the Aces, as a flamethrowing reliever and as a lethal hitter. The to be junior slashed for team-highs in RBIs (23) and home runs (two). On the mound Applebey appeared 10 times, tossing 13 1-3 innings. He allowed just nine hits and six earned runs in his innings of work, coupled with a 3.15 ERA.
Newkirk served as the everyday center fielder for the Aces when he wasn't on the mound. Newkirk hit for a .224 line with eight RBIs, 12 runs and a .333 OBP. As a pitcher, the southpaw and soon to be senior pitched the second most innings for the Aces. He started seven games, tossing 31 1-3 innings, allowing 21 hits, 24 earned runs, but striking out 50 batters in those innings -- more than twice that of the second-best strikeout total for the Aces (Logan Durham's 25). If he trims down his amount of walks (29), Newkirk could be set for a stellar senior campaign as the ace of Aces pitching rotation.
As a team the Aces fell in the Regional Championship to Fairfield and ended their season with a 10-11 record. They'll return all three of the aforementioned players, who'll be relied on heavily as leaders to replace the four departing seniors.
In the game each appeared in just one at bat, though none reached. Newkirk tossed a scoreless inning, walking one better, forcing a double play and fanning one batter. Applebey allowed three hits in his inning of work, but struck out two batters.
Congratulations to all three on the incredible honor and tremendous seasons.