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Six Patriots earn All-Peach Belt baseball honors

FLORENCE, S.C. – Six Francis Marion University baseball players were recently named to the 2009 Peach Belt Conference All-Conference Team.

Named to the 16-member first-team were senior catcher Jared Barkdoll, senior right-handed pitcher David Walters, and junior shortstop Barrett Kleinknecht. Selected to the All-PBC second-team were senior third baseman Keon Graves, junior designated hitter Jacob Wallace, and junior right-handed relief pitcher Brandon Forshee.

Barkdoll earns All-Conference honors for the second year in a row.

Barkdoll, a native of Greencastle, Pa., is batting .379 with 29 runs scored, 12 doubles, three home runs, and 37 runs batted in despite missing 10 games due to a hamstring injury. He ranks fifth in the PBC in runners caught stealing and has 22 RBIs in 23 PBC contests. He has 19 multi-hit games and 12 multi-RBI games, and earlier this year he put together an 11-game hitting streak. A second generation Patriot baseball player, he holds FMU's career records for RBIs (158) and total bases (351) and is second in career hits (247).

Walters, a native of River Hill, Md., has a 7-3 pitching mark with a 5.37 earned run average. He ranks fourth in the Peach Belt in wins, and was named the conference’s Pitcher of the Week twice in 2009. He is 5-2 in his conference starts and earlier this year was named to the South Atlantic Challenge All-Tournament Team.

Kleinknecht, a native of Florence, leads the Patriots with 59 RBIs in 47 games. He is batting .386 with 45 runs scored, 16 doubles, and eight home runs. In the field, he has compiled a .952 fielding percentage with only 11 errors in 229 chances. He ranks in the Top 10 in the PBC in nine different categories, and ranks 55th nationally in toughest to strikeout. In conference games, he is hitting .411 with 40 RBIs in 25 games, and overall has hit safely in 39 of 47 games (with a pair of 12-game streaks) and reached base safely in 42 games. On the pitching mound, he has a 2.81 ERA in 10 pitching appearances with a 1-2 record and three saves.

Graves, a native of Dillon, leads the conference in hitting (.441) and on-base percentage (.518), while ranking 29th and 39th nationally in the two categories. He has compiled eight homers, 44 runs scored, 10 doubles, 38 RBIs, and a team-high 12 stolen bases (in 15 attempts), while ranking 12th in the PBC in fielding assists (118). He was named the 2009 FMU Team M.V.P., and was earlier this year named to the South Atlantic Challenge All-Tournament Team. He had a 10-game hitting streak and has posted 23 multi-hit games and 10 multi-RBI games.

Wallace, a native of Moore, S.C., is in the midst of a 13-game hitting streak and has lifted his season average to .343 while totaling 15 doubles, three homers, and 42 RBIs. He has 19 multi-hit games and 13 multi-RBIs games, and has hit safely in 39 of 47 games and reached base safely in 43 contests.

 Forshee, a native of Jacksonville, Fla., has made a conference-leading 27 appearances and owns a 3-2 record with four saves and a 2.36 ERA. In conference games, he has been tough with a 1.88 ERA and a .183 batting average against in 14 appearances. Overall, opponents are hitting only .190 against him and only eight of 30 inherited base runners have scored.

These six have helped Francis Marion to a 33-13-1 record, a school-record 12-game winning streak, and No. 9 national ranking as the squad enters the PBC Tournament.

The total of six players honored is the most ever for Francis Marion in a single year.

#143/5-8-09

Last Published: June 1, 2009 12:48 PM
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