DeLAND Fla. (May 21, 2013) – Junior Will Chesney (Knoxville, Tenn.) and senior Derek Niesman (Wellington, Fla.) landed Atlantic Sun All-Academic Team honors, announced the league office on Tuesday.
Chesney, a sport management major, has earned a cumulative grade-point-average (GPA) of 3.65. The right-handed pitcher is also a three-time Dean's List and A-Sun All-Academic member. Chesney went 3-2 with a 2.78 ERA (11 ER/35.2 IP) while striking out 31 and walking eight in 24 relief appearances during the regular season. Seventeen of his appearances were scoreless, and Chesney didn't allow a hit in 10 of those stints – including 4.1 no-hit innings with six strikeouts in the win at Illinois-Chicago on May 4. The Knoxville native set a career high for innings pitched and strikeouts in the win over the Flames. Chesney also earned the win after pitching 2.2 scoreless innings against Wofford on Feb. 19, and also recorded two innings of scoreless ball with two strikeouts en route to picking up the win at Northern Kentucky on April 6. Meanwhile, Chesney received his first collegiate save after pitching the final three innings in ETSU’ 7-2 win over Lipscomb on April 13.
Niesman earned his degree in sport management, while graduating Cum Laude and with Atlantic Sun Commissioner's Scholar honors (3.6+ GPA) last Tuesday. The Buccaneer infielder graduated with a GPA of 3.61, while being a four-time A-Sun All-Academic and Dean's List honoree. Niesman, a Buccaneer 4.0 Club member, started in 49 games in 2013, while ranking third on the team in RBI (31) and fourth in batting average (.295) and on-base percentage (.363). Niesman also finished the season with a team-best 12-game hitting streak, where he hit .413 (19-46) with two doubles, one home run and 10 RBI. Overall, Niesman recorded 14 multi-hit and seven multi-RBI games, while registering at least one hit in 16 of the 24 A-Sun games played. Niesman tied a career-high with three hits at Northern Kentucky on April 7 and against Penn State on Feb. 16, while driving in a career-high four runs in the 8-3 win over the Nittany Lions.
Mercer’s Brandon Barker was named Scholar-Athlete of the Year after the junior pitcher earned a 3.61 GPA in engineering.
The A-Sun introduced the new sport-by-sport Academic All-Conference teams in the 2011-12 academic year to recognize student-athletes who embody the conference’s mission of Building Winners for Life. All the members of the team boast a 3.30 cumulative grade point average (GPA) or better and participated in at least half of their team’s games.
The Bucs begin their run for an A-Sun Championship Wednesday morning when ETSU takes on host and fifth seed Stetson at 10 a.m. from Melching Field.
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