Baseball News Archive 2015-2016

Hesston Baseball ends Texas trip with a win

The Hesston College baseball team scored early and often en route to a 13-8 road win at Richland (Texas) College on Sunday, Feb. 7. Sunday’s win was the final game of a four-game season-opening series against the four-time NJCAA National Champion Thunderducks.

Sophomore right-hander AJ Chalupka (Flower Mound, Texas) pitched into the seventh inning in front of a decidedly pro-Hesston crowd to earn the win. Chalupka is one of ten Hesston players native to the Lone Star State.

Jake Salinas (Rockwall, Texas) had a big day at the plate, going 3-for-5 with two runs and three RBI. Salinas’ three-run blast in the second extended Hesston’s lead to 6-0. Jake Shelby (McKinney, Texas) singled and doubled twice in six at bats, knocking in three.

In Friday’s opener, Hesston took a one-run lead into the seventh inning before falling 6-5 in extra innings. Richland took both ends Saturday’s doubleheader.

1-3 on the year, Hesston Baseball travels to Independence (Kan.) CC for a 12 p.m. doubleheader on Saturday, Feb. 13.

Hesston Baseball ready to hit the diamond

First-year Hesston College Baseball skipper Kyle Howell has the Larks ready to take the field in 2016. Howell has a freshman-heavy roster but will rely on sophomore leadership to find success this season.

Sophomore shortstop Jake Shelby (McKinney, Texas), a Tarleton State University (Stephenville, Texas) commit, returns to lead the Larks after a solid freshman campaign. Sophomore righty Collin Loutensock (West Valley, Utah) anchors the pitching staff following Region VI Pitcher of the Year honors in 2015 when he set the single-season strikeout mark and finished 13th in the country in that category.

“Having Jake in the line-up everyday elevates us as a program,” Howell said. “He took a step forward this summer and should have a big year. We’ll hand the ball to Collin as our ace and are excited about the ability he brings to the mound. I’m looking for both of them to have a great year.”

Hesston Baseball has a challenging schedule ahead of it, starting with a four-game set (Feb. 5-to-7) at Richland (Texas) CC to open the season.

“I’m really excited about this group,” Howell added. “Offensively, I’ve been impressed with how far we’ve come since our guys arrived in August. We’re deep on the mound, and with the additions of a few mid-year transfers, we are confident in our staff. This group really loves to compete and we can’t wait to watch them fit the field.”

Hesston Baseball signs six to open 2016 recruiting class

Hesston College head baseball coach Kyle Howell announces the addition of six student athletes in what promises to be a successful recruiting year for the Larks.

The additions include:

-Jacob Harris, RHP, Coronado High School, El Paso, Texas
-Dallas Johnson, SS, Warrenton (Mo.) High School
-Cooper Morgan, OF, Dacula (Ga.) High School
-Joel Ogletree, INF, Norwood (Mo.) High School
-Harrison Park, RHP, Wakeland High School, Frisco, Texas
-Dylan Schoknecht, RHP, River Ridge High School, Woodstock, Ga.

“These signings indicate the positive direction our program is headed,” Howell said. “Coach Spitz (Recruiting Coordinator) did a great job identifying and pursuing high caliber student-athletes. He deserves a ton of credit in this process. This group represents a great start to the 2016 recruiting class, and we can’t wait to add more names to this talented class of young men.”

Larks add pitcher, catcher to 2015 class

Hesston College baseball coach Kyle Howell announces Ethan Timmermans, a 6’4” pitcher from South Huron District High School, Exeter, Ontario, and Jayro Rivera, a catcher from Carlos Beltran Baseball Academy, Barceloneta, Puerto Rico, as the latest additions to the Larks program.

A team captain at South Huron District High, Timmermans will compete for early innings for the Larks as a freshman. He will study sports management at Hesston.

“Ethan is the perfect fit for our campus and our program,” Howell said. “He is very gifted academically and has a very high ceiling on the diamond.”

Timmermans attends Grace Bible Chapel, Parkhill, Ontario. He is the son of Doug and Laura Timmermans, Parkhill.

Voted Rookie of the Year for Carlos Beltran Baseball Academy in 2014, Rivera adds a solid bat and talent behind the plate for the Larks.

A four-time honor roll student, Rivera will study physical therapy at Hesston. He is the son of Jaime Rivera and Rosa Ballester, Mayaguez, Puerto Rico.

“Jayro is a catcher who we think will be an outstanding pick-up,” Howell said. “He can really play and is a high-energy guy.”

Baseball adds local talent to 2015 class

Hesston College baseball coach Kyle Howell announces Kyler Cox, a utility player from Little River (Kan.) High School, as the newest addition to the Larks program.

Cox, a second-team all-state catcher his junior year, hit .375 with 35 runs scored and helped Little River High to a state runner-up finish in 2014.

“We’re excited to have Kyler join our program,” Howell said. “He’s a utility-type of player who can really hit.”

A four-year honor roll student, Cox will study engineering at Hesston. He is the son of Mike and Liz Cox, Lyons, Kan.

Howell named new baseball coach

Hesston College athletic director Joel Kauffman has announced the hiring of Kyle Howell as baseball coach. He will succeed Rob Ramseyer, who transitions to Hesston’s Vice President of Student Development role July 1. Howell was associate head baseball coach for the Larks in 2014-15, serving primarily as Hesston’s pitching coach and recruiting coordinator.

Prior to arriving at Hesston, Howell made stops at College of the Ozarks (Point Lookout, Mo.), El Paso (Texas) Community College and Southwest Baptist University (Bolivar, Mo.). Along with his work at the collegiate level, he has also coached in the Washington Nationals organization and currently serves as an associate scout for the Boston Red Sox.

While at El Paso CC, Howell was responsible for handling the recruiting efforts for the Tejanos. During his time there he coached two MLB draft picks, the WJCAC Player of the Year and the NJCAA Player of the Year in 2014.

Since 2011, Howell has coached 18 Division I signees and six MLB draft picks.

After finishing his playing career at Southwest Baptist University, Coach Howell remained in Bolivar, joining the coaching staff working with catchers and assisting with hitters. Following the 2010 fall semester he accepted a coaching position in the Washington Nationals organization. While with the Nationals, Howell served as the strength and conditioning coach and first base coach for the Class-A affiliate Hagerstown (Md.) Suns.

“I’m tremendously excited to be named the head baseball coach at Hesston,” Howell said. “I’d like to thank president Howard Keim, athletic director Joel Kauffman and Rob Ramseyer for giving me this opportunity.”

Coach Howell and his wife Kassie reside in Valley Center with their daughters Khloe and Kelsea.

Larks season comes to an end with loss to BMC

The Hesston College baseball team came up short in its bid for its third consecutive Region VI title, falling to Brown Mackie College (Salina, Kan.) in a best-of-five game series May 1 to 2.

BMC swept Hesston in a double-header on Friday, May 1 at Oswald Field before the series shifted to Salina for a doubleheader May 2.

Down 0-2 in the series and facing elimination, Hesston took game three 9-6. In the nightcap the Larks trailed 5-2 heading to the seventh before mounting a rally that fell just short, with the final out recorded with a full count and the bases loaded.

The Larks finish at 18-24.

Larks earn 7-2 home win as postseason nears

The Hesston College baseball team picked up a 7-2 home win over Central Christian College JV (McPherson, Kan.) on Wednesday, April 22, upping its mark to 17-18.

Four Hesston pitchers combined for seven strong innings on the mound, yielding just five total hits without an earned run. Hesston hurlers struck out out eight and didn’t walk a batter.

Andrew Berry (Mulvane, Kan.) went 3-for-4 with a double and a run batted in. Zach Pearson (Many, La.) had two RBI and Jake Shelby (McKinney, Texas) went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and an RBI.

The Larks close out their regular season schedule with a pair of 1 p.m. double headers versus Southeast CC (Beatrice, Neb.) on Saturday and Sunday, April 25 and 26. Saturday’s games are in Beatrice while Sunday’s twinbill will be held at Hesston’s Oswald Field.

Berry’s slam lifts Larks over Dodge City

The Hesston College baseball team earned a doubleheader split with NJCAA Div. I Dodge City (Kan.) CC on Tuesday, April 14, with a 7-1 game-two win at Oswald Field.

The visiting Conquistadors, 29-13 overall and atop the Jayhawk West standings, won the opener 7-2 before Hesston jumped out to a big lead and in the nightcap.

Freshman Andrew Berry (Mulvane, Kan.) hit a grand slam that capped off a five-inning first run for the Larks and gave freshman lefty Brandon Clay (Bethany, Okla.) all the room he would need. Clay went six strong innings, allowing just two hits and a run while fanning five. Owen Stubblefield (Georgetown, Ontario) fired a perfect seventh with a strikeout to nail down the win.

Berry finished 2-for-3 with five RBI. Sophomore Nick Mitchell (Wichita, Kan.) went 2-for-2 with a double and two runs scored.

16-18 on the year, the Larks travel to Brown Mackie College (Salina, Kan.) for a 2 p.m. doubleheader on Saturday, April 18.

Larks split with BMC

The Hesston College baseball team split its double header with rival Brown Mackie College (Salina, Kan.) on Saturday, April 11, winning 5-1 in the opener before dropping a 5-2 game two.

Collin Loutensock (West Valley, Utah) put together a strong outing in game one, as the righthander went the distance, allowing just five hits and one run with 11 strikeouts.

Hesston scored twice in the third inning and pushed two more across in the fourth and cruised to the win. The Larks swiped five bases in the win.

Hesston hosts Dodge City (Kan.) CC for a 4 p.m. doubleheader on Tuesday, April 14.

Loutensock’s shutout lifts Larks

The Hesston College baseball team split a doubleheader with Wentworth Military Academy (Lexington, Mo.) on Saturday, April 4, dropping a 6-3 opener before winning game two by a 3-0 score.

In the nightcap, freshman righty Collin Loutensock (West Valley, Utah) struck out 11 in a complete-game shutout, scattering six singles without issuing a walk. Daulton Horton (Denton, Texas) had an RBI double and a stolen base in two at bats, while Rene Rivera (McGregor, Texas) and Corey Fowler (Boone, Iowa) each went 1-for-3 with a run scored.

The Larks broke a scoreless tie with a run in the bottom of the fourth, then added two more in the sixth. Loutensock allowed a one-out single in the top of the seventh before fanning two to secure the win.

Hesston, now 14-14 on the year, travels to Hutchinson (Kan.) CC for a 4 p.m. doubleheader on Wednesday, April 8.

Fowler collects cycle as Larks blast Barton

The Hesston College baseball team crushed Barton CC (Great Bend, Kan.) 13-2 (seven innings) on Wednesday, April 1.

Sophomore Corey Fowler (Boone, Iowa) enjoyed a career day by hitting for the cycle in four at bats. His grand slam highlighted a 6-run fifth inning that gave Hesston a commanding 11-2 lead. Fowler scored twice and knocked in a career-high seven runs on the day.

Sophomore hurler Josh Hibbard (Munford, Tenn.) went the distance on the mound for the Larks, scattering six hits and walking just two. Hibbard fanned six in the complete-game effort.

“It was great to see Corey have a big day offensively,” Hesston coach Rob Ramseyer said. “Hibbard stepped up and gave us a solid outing, which was big for us.”

Hesston, now .500 at 13-13, host Wentworth Military Academy (Lexington, Mo.) for a 1 p.m. double header on Saturday, April 4.

Baseball adds Oklahoma outfielder to 2015 class

Hesston College baseball coach Rob Ramseyer announces Jayden Banks, an outfielder from Lawton (Okla.) High School, as the newest addition to the Larks program.

Banks hit .340 and swiped 35 bases as a junior for Lawton High. He brings instant speed to the Larks lineup.

“We’re excited to bring Jayden to our program,” Ramseyer said. “He runs well and will create excitement on the base paths.”

Banks will study business at Hesston. He is the son of Shawn and Kevin Granger, Lawton.

Baseball signs Georgia talent for 2015 recruiting class

Hesston College baseball coach Rob Ramseyer announces Chance Rodriguez, an infielder from Dacula (Ga.) High School, as the newest addition to the Larks program.

Rodriguez hit .333 with five doubles and 20 runs scored his junior season. He is a four-year letter-winner and a 2014 second-team All-Region 8AAAAA player. Rodriguez was an honorable mention selection for the Athens Banner Herald All-area team, and was selected for the Perfect Game Southeast Region Honorable Mention team.

A four-time Scholar Athlete Award recipient, Rodriguez will study education at Hesston.

“Hesston Baseball is getting a really good player in Chance,” Ramseyer said. “He’s a guy who is going to help us in the infield for the next two years.”

Rodriguez attends 12Stone Church, Lawrenceville, Ga. He is the son of Chris and Rikki Rodriguez, Dacula.

Baseball sweeps York JV

The Hesston College baseball team earned a pair of wins (6-5, 12-5) at York (Neb.) College JV on Saturday, March 21, improving its season record to 10-9.

Down 5-2 after five frames of game one, the Larks stormed back with three runs in the sixth and the game-wining run an inning later to claim the opener. Zac Pearson (Many, La.) hit a home run and scored twice, while Corey Fowler (Boone, Iowa) went 2-for-4 with two knocked in.

On the mound, AJ Chalupka (Flower Mound, Texas) started and went three and 1/3 with one earned run allowed. Connor Gillihan (Spring Hill, Kan.) and Josh Hibbard (Munford, Tenn.) combined for three and 2/3 out of the pen with just one earned run.

In game two, a six-run first propelled Hesston to a huge offensive game, as the Larks cruised to the 12-5 win. Hesston led 9-3 after three innings and never looked back.

Louis Marinez (Santo Domingo, Domincan Republic) enjoyed a 2-for-3 showing with a run and four RBI, including a three-run HR. Daulton Horton (Denton, Texas) and Jake Shelby (McKinney, Texas) had two RBI each, while Horton, Cody McNeal (Sperry, Okla.), Rene Rivera (McGregor, Texas) and Nick Mitchell (Wichita, Kan.) each scored twice.

Hesston hosts Bethany College JV (Lindsborg, Kan.) for a 5 p.m. double header on Wednesday, March 25.