FLORENCE, S.C. – Francis Marion University sophomore right-handed pitcher Don Sandifer has been named to the NCAA Division II preseason All-America Team as selected by the American Baseball Coaches Association. Two other Patriots, senior first baseman Preston Shuey and junior outfielder Buddy Sosnoskie, also gained preseason honors from the ABCA. Shuey was named to the “Players to Watch” list for 2011 and Sosnoskie was named to the “Newcomers to Watch” list.
Sandifer, a native of Bamberg, was 7-1 with a conference-best 2.73 earned run average as a freshman in 2010. He led the PBC in fewest walks, runs, and earned runs allowed and had the third-best opponent batting average against at .230. In 69.1 innings pitched, he allowed only 59 hits, struck out 49, and walked only nine, ranking him ninth nationally in fewest bases-on-balls issued per nine innings (1.17).
Shuey hit .341 last season with 31 runs scored, 12 doubles, five home runs, and 40 runs batted in. The Charlotte native posted a .423 on-base percentage and committed only four errors in 502 chances for a .992 fielding percentage.
A three-year starter, Shuey already owns the FMU career record for defensive put outs and could end his career owning records for games played and started, doubles, RBIs, total bases, and sacrifice flies.
Sosnoskie, native of Statesville, N.C., transferred from Virginia Tech this past summer.
As a Hokie in 2010, he batted .347 with a team-leading 13 home runs, 10 doubles, 46 runs scored, and 48 runs batted in. He ranked 14th in the ACC in home runs and 19th in batting average. He registered a .609 slugging percentage, 15th-best in the ACC, as the Hokies posted a 40-22 record and made their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2000. He was named to the All-Regional Team at the Columbia, S.C., regional.
He was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the 25th round of Major League Baseball’s 2010 First-Year Player Draft.
Francis Marion is ranked 15th and ninth in two preseason NCAA Division II national polls.
FMU posted a 40-14 record last season and made a second straight appearance in the NCAA Division II National Tournament where the Patriots hosted the Southeast Regional. The 40 victories is the second-highest win total in team history, and the Patriots ended the season ranked 10th in the nation.
FMU opens its 2011 season on Feb. 5 with a home doubleheader against King College.