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Five Patriots earn All-Region baseball honors

FLORENCE, S.C. – Five members of the Francis Marion University baseball team were recently named to the Daktronics Inc. All-Southeast Region Team.

The Patriots dominated the second-team squad, claiming five of the 15 spots. Earning recognition were senior catcher Jared Barkdoll, senior third baseman Keon Graves, junior shortstop Barrett Kleinknecht, senior right-handed pitcher David Walters, and junior lefty pitcher Jeremiah Meiners.

Both Barkdoll and Walters were also second-team All-Region selections in 2008.

The team is sponsored by Daktronics, Inc., an acknowledged world leader in scoring, timing and programmable display systems for virtually every sport at every level of competition. The team is voted on by the members of the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).  

Barkdoll, a native of Greencastle, Pa., batted .386 with 35 runs scored, 14 doubles, three home runs, and 41 runs batted in, despite missing 10 games with an injury. He compiled a .456 on-base percentage and a .992 fielding percentage – only two errors and two passed balls in 44 games – while throwing out 12 of 38 runners attempting to steal. He pieced together an 11-game hitting streak and recorded 23 multi-hit games and 13 multi-RBI games.

He finished his career owning the school’s all-time records for RBIs (162) and total bases (364), while tying the all-time mark for doubles (50) and ranking second in base hits (258).

Graves, a native of Dillon, led the Patriots in hitting (.411 average), on-base percentage (.507), and stolen bases (13 of 16) and shared the team lead in runs scored (50). He also posted season totals of 11 doubles, eight homers, and 38 RBIs. He led the Peach Belt Conference in on-base percentage and ranked third in hitting. During the year, he had a 10-game hitting streak and compiled 23 multi-hit games and 10 multi-RBI games.

Kleinknecht, a hometown product from Florence, batted .372 this past season with 50 runs scored and team-leading totals of 16 doubles, nine homers, and 64 RBIs. He had a pair of 12-game hitting streaks, 27 multi-hit games, and 17 multi-RBI games. In the field, he committed only 11 errors in 256 chances and contributed to 28 double plays. He also pitched in 15 games with a 1-3 record, six saves, and a 3.41 ERA. He struck out 23 batters in 29 innings.

Walters, a native of River Hill, Md., led the Patriot pitching staff with 15 starts, while posting a 7-3 record and a 5.97 ERA. He fanned 55 batters in 72.1 innings, while walking only 23.          

Meiners, a native of Silver Spring, Md., compiled a 6-2 record with a 4.15 ERA. The southpaw struck out 52 batters in 65 innings.

Francis Marion posted a 38-15-1 record this past year, the second-highest win total in the program’s history.  The Patriots finished second during the PBC regular season, won the Peach Belt Tournament title, and earned their fourth NCAA Division II national tournament bid in the past seven years, placing third at the Southeast Regional in Aiken last week. The Patriots are currently ranked 14th in the latest Collegiate Baseball Magazine NCAA Division II Top 30 poll.

#154/5-21-09

Last Published: June 1, 2009 2:58 PM
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