LANCASTER, Pa. - Brendan DeMond and Kevin Shields have been named the Centennial Conference (CC) Pitcher and Player of the Week, respectively, as announced by the league office on Monday afternoon. The honors mark the first time in the 2013 campaign that a Diplomat has earned a CC weekly award.
DeMond and Shields helped guide F&M to its first CC title since 2006 and fourth in program history with an impressive run through the double-elimination tournament this past weekend, giving the Diplomats the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Diplomats became the first four seed to win the conference title, defeating Johns Hopkins twice and Gettysburg once en route to the crown.
DeMond became the first player in CC history to record a pair of victories in the conference tournament, defeating sixth-ranked Hopkins twice to lead F&M to the championship. Pitching on just one day of rest after a complete-game, four-hit shutout in F&M's 3-0 opening-round triumph over Hopkins on Friday, DeMond returned to the rubber on Sunday with an NCAA bid on the line, fanning six batters and allowing just one run on six hits en route to Tournament MVP honors. Throughout his 14 innings of work over the weekend, the senior righthander totaled 12 strikeouts, allowed only one run and held the Blue Jays to 10 hits.
Shields had a huge CC Tournament for the Diplomats, leading the squad in batting average (.438) and RBIs (6). The senior first baseman delivered what would prove to be the game-winning hit in Friday's 3-0 win over Johns Hopkins with an RBI single in the top of the first, and recorded a three-run homer in the 16-1 championship game defeat of the Blue Jays.
The Diplomats are back in action tomorrow at York (Pa.) at 4:00 p.m., and will find out their NCAA Regional site this Sunday.