Four Spartans Earn All-CAC Honors

Four Spartans Earn All-CAC Honors

YORK, PA – The York College baseball team had four players named to the 2009
All-Capital Athletic Conference baseball squad as announced by the league office on Tuesday afternoon.

Senior centerfielder Ryan Poff (York, Pa./Spring Grove) and junior pitcher Jason Christenberry (Yoe, Pa./Dallastown) each earned first-team All-CAC honors while sophomore second baseman Kyle Cook (Pylesville, Md./North Harford) and junior outfielder Mike Connolly (Selden, N.Y. /Newfield) were named to the second-team.

Head Coach Paul Saikia was please to have four of his players recognized as the league’s coaches as among the best in the conference as the Spartans went 27-14 in 2009.

“I am proud of our All-CAC selections,” states Saikia. “Especially in that they impacted a team that made such a vast improvement in just one year.”

Poff makes his fourth appearance on the All-CAC squad. He was the CAC Player of the Year and the CAC Rookie of the Year in 2007 in addition to being a member of the first team. He was a second-team member in 2007 and then back to being a first team member in 2008 and 2009.

Poff finishes his career as one of the best offensive players in school history. He is the school’s all-time hits leader with 262 hits and the leader in total bases at 395. He owns a career average of .382 with 171 runs scored, 64 doubles, 10 triples, and 17 home runs. He posted a slugging percentage of .581 while he had a .426 on-base percentage.

“Ryan showed, once again, that he is a dominant player in our conference,” states Saikia. “He was a force for us for four straight years.”

Poff finished his senior year hitting .423 with 53 RBI, 25 runs scored, 23 doubles, and six home runs. He had 110 total bases and a slugging percentage of .675 and an on-base percentage of .470. He also stole a career-high eight bases and struck out just 10 times in 163 at-bats for the season.

Christenberry bounced back after a tough sophomore year to reclaim his spot at the top of the Spartan rotation. Christenberry went 7-3 with a 4.09 ERA. He threw 77.0 innings, with 53strikeouts as opponents hit just .266 against him. He now has 15 wins in three years with a career ERA of 3.88.

“Jason threw a lot of important games for us this year,” says the Spartan mentor. “He showed a lot of composure in helping lead our staff.”

Christenberry was the CAC Rookie of the Year in 2007 and a second team selection as he is making his second All-CAC appearance.

Connolly had a solid junior year in the middle of the Spartan line up. The Spartans’ left fielder hit .343 with 30 RBI, 30 run scored, 12 doubles and three home runs. He owned a .490 slugging percentage and a .419 on base percentage. He walked 18 times during the year, tying him for second on the squad.

“Mike was very consistent hitting in the heart of our order this year. He gave us good reliability in a critical spot,” says Saikia.

Connolly is a career .353 hitter with 160 hits, 28 doubles, and seven home runs. The all-conference honor is a first for Connolly.

Cook is also a first-time conference honoree after he hit .376 for the year. Cook finished the year scoring 37 runs with 17 RBI and seven doubles. He had a .420 on base percentage from his second spot in the Spartan lineup while he led the team in sacrifice hits. Cook was named the CAC Player of the Week twice during the season.

“I am really proud of the way Kyle came on as the season progressed. He kept getting better and better,” says Saikia.

In addition to getting job done at the plate and in the field, Cook also saw some time on the mound as he picked up three wins and five saves in 29.1 innings of action.

The Spartans concluded the season with a 13-game turnover as they went from 14 wins in 2008 to 27 victories in 2009. The Spartans are now waiting to see if they will earn a berth in the NCAA Tournament. The NCAA will announce the tournament field on Monday, May 11.