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Orr headlines MIAA postseason honors

Photo by Junfu Han
Photo by Junfu Han

Four different Kalamazoo College baseball players were named All-MIAA selections Tuesday, May 9 in a release from the league office. Ryan Orr headlined the group of selections being named Co-Most Outstanding Pitcher of the Year.

Joining Orr on the First Team was senior outfielder Ian Kobernick and senior third baseman Jack Clark. Senior left-handed pitcher Aaron Schwark was named to the league's Second Team.

Orr, a DeWitt native and the only junior of the group honored with a postseason accolade, showcased his ability as one of the top pitchers in the country once again in 2017. A preseason All-American pick, Orr put together a 7-1 record with a 2.56 ERA and struck out 10.09 batters per nine innings. In 63 1/3 innings of work, he walked just five batters. In conference, Orr recorded the league's second-lowest ERA (2.61), went 6-1 and also recorded two saves. He's currently Kalamazoo's career leader in wins, strikeouts and ERA.

Kobernick, a native of Huntington Woods, put together a 2017 campaign which was Most Outstanding Player-caliber leading the Hornets in nearly all major offensive categories. He drove in 49 runs with 17 doubles and seven home runs and ended the regular season with a slash line of .444/.525/.735. In conference play he led the league with 36 RBIs, five more than the next-closest player around the league. During the season, Kobernick became the Hornets' all-time leader in hits, doubles and runs and broke the single season marks for hits, RBIs and doubles.

Clark, who prepped at Ann Arbor Skyline High School, provided protection for Kobernick throughout the 2017 season and was part of a lethal combo in the heart of the Hornets' batting order. An All-Region selection last season, Clark achieved career highs in 2017 for doubles (9), triples (2), home runs (2) and RBIs (36). He batted .351 and also recorded a career-high .480 slugging percentage. Clark put together a 16-game hit streak in the middle of the MIAA season.

Schwark, a native of Grand Rapids, was as consistent as they come in the No. 2 spot of the Hornets' rotation. In seven of his nine starts in 2017, he allowed three or fewer runs and allowed two or fewer earned runs in his final five starts of the season. Schwark's 3.00 conference ERA was the fourth-lowest in the league. Overall, Schwark ended the 2017 season 5-2 with a 3.73 ERA while striking out 8.88 batters per nine innings, an average of more than two strikeouts higher than his previous career high. He's the program's all-time leader with four complete game shutouts.

The Hornets, seeking back-to-back MIAA tournament championships, begin the MIAA tournament tomorrow afternoon at Woodworth Field when they host Hope at 4 p.m.