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Darton College Baseball Swings Into National Polls

March 29, 2012

The Darton College Cavaliers ranked No. 12 nationally in a poll released by the NJCAA today - the first top-20 ranking in the baseball program’s history - indicating a big step for the Cavs under their new head coach, Scot Hemmings.

“The guys have bought into a system and are executing it at a high rate of effectiveness,” Hemmings said. “And the ranking is good for the program, no doubt about that. We’re working with some big recruits – this should help sway them too.”

The Cavs are hot, and the NJCAA knows it. They’ve won 17 of their last 19 ballgames, positioning them at the top of the highly competitive GCAA conference. Their current 25-8 record is the ninth best in the NJCAA, and they’re 12-1 in conference play.

“We’ve come a long way - I think we’re a complete 360 from where we were last year,” sophomore pitcher Matt Aldrich said. “We put Darton’s name back on the map.”

Along with its current ranking, the Darton program can also boast of Aldrich’s NJCAA-leading 81 strikeouts, and outfielder Kevin Manos, who leads the nation with 47 RBI.

“I think they’re excited about the direction we’re headed, but not satisfied with where we’re at,” Hemmings said of his team. “We now have to focus on not forgetting how we got here – through hard work, playing hard and executing our game plan.”

The Cavs just returned Tuesday from a 17-4 win over conference-rival Andrew College, whom they’ll play again at 6 p.m., Friday, and again in a double-header beginning at 1 p.m., Saturday. All three games will be at Darton.

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