Stevenson University’s baseball team wrapped up their 2019 season on April 28, finishing with a 20-20 record. The Mustangs showed great improvement under head coach Dave Gage, who just finished his second year with the team.
Gage explained how the team’s mentality of expecting to win each game and focusing on the three values; selfless, excellence and to compete, has taken them to the next level. “We are selfless, and we care about each other,” says Gage.
Senior catcher Jordan Moore said that the biggest strength to the team was their togetherness and their “never quit” mentality.
“We care about each other and we want everyone to succeed,” Moore said. With a strong bond between the players, the Mustangs were riding high into the season.
The regular season started on on Feb. 15 on the road against St. Mary’s College of Maryland. The team split the two-game series, and continued their road trip against opponents Gallaudet University and Marymount University. Junior catcher Alex Kidwiler was named as Stevenson’s Athlete of the Week when he hit two home runs against Marymount on Feb 22. The Mustangs started 3-1, building confidence in the players.
“Our lineup was strong from 1-9, and even though we did not score a lot of runs, we found ways to win,” said Moore.
The Mustangs started March off with three consecutive wins. Focusing on each value one day at a time, the Mustangs won eight of their first 12 games. Junior pitcher Tyler Graham was honored as Stevenson’s Athlete of the Week for March 3. He threw a four-hit seven-inning shutout over Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts.
Later, four games were postponed due to inclement weather. The Mustangs were forced to cancel a game against McDaniel College, and postponed the double-header against Cabrini College. Once the March games concluded, the team was sitting at a record of 12-10.
The month of April was filled with ups and downs. The Mustangs started the month 3-9 but went on a four-game win streak to push their final record to 20-20. The team won five of their last six games, as they were pushing for a playoff spot in the Middle Atlantic Commonwealth Conference. Unfortunately, the Mustangs could not win their final season game at Lebanon Valley College and missed the playoffs, finishing in fifth place.
Looking into next season, the returning players walked away with great experience.
“That last game provided a bittersweet feeling and gave the younger guys a chip on their shoulder,” said Moore. Gage added, “It starts with our leadership; we have tremendous seniors who know how to compete and make our guys compete.”
Five Mustangs on the team were named to the MAC Comonwealth ALl-Conference teams: Kidwiler and junior Kevin Murray Jr. were named to the first team, and seniors James Wiercinski and Matthew Kerber made the second team. Senior Jordan Moore received an Honorable Mention, according to gomustangsports.com. The Mustangs are looking to next year as they start their off-season program.