SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The Southern Conference announced its April athletes of the month for baseball, men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s lacrosse, men’s and women’s outdoor track and field, softball and men’s and women’s tennis Friday, highlighting excellence among student-athletes during the month.
Collin Fleischer, VMI, Sr., IF/OF
VMI’s Collin Fleischer had a huge month for the Keydets, totaling 25 hits, 21 RBIs, 21 runs scored and eight home runs. On April 25, the senior went yard against Virginia Tech to become VMI’s career leader in home runs. The Chester, Virginia, native slugged .776 for the month of April, drawing 14 walks in the process. Fleischer had seven games in which he drove in two or more runs, seven in which he scored two or more runs and seven in which registered two or more hits. Perhaps his biggest game of the month came on April 18 against Richmond, when he went 3-for-5 with a home run and four RBIs in an 11-2 victory. Fleischer smacked two homers against Mercer to end the month with 44 career home runs. Fleischer smashed two more home runs in Wednesday’s 7-6 victory over Old Dominion and now trails only Samford’s Austin Edens (51) for career home runs among active SoCon players.
Others nominated: Jeffrey Brown (The Citadel), Caleb Longley (ETSU), RJ Yeager (Mercer), Andrew Moritz (UNCG), Anthony Mulrine (Samford), Justice Bigbie (Western Carolina) and McClain Bradley (Wofford).
Adam Scott, Wofford, Sr., LHP
Earning SoCon Pitcher of the Week on April 23 and 30, Wofford’s Adam Scott was 3-1 with 44 strikeouts in 31 innings last month. Against UNCW on April 6, the left-hander went seven innings, giving up just one run while striking out seven batters as Wofford picked up a 13-1 victory. In his next outing against Furman, the senior threw eight innings, allowing just one earned run and striking out 11 batters in a 4-3 loss. The Terriers would bounce back the next time Scott took the mound against The Citadel, giving the Canandaigua, New York, native more than enough run support as Scott tossed seven scoreless innings, striking out nine batters in a 5-1 victory. Scott capped off the month with perhaps the best outing of his career, going the distance against UNCG and striking out a career-high 17 batters in a 2-1 win on April 27. The 17 strikeouts tied a Wofford program record and placed Scott, the active SoCon leader in career strikeouts, fourth all-time in that category in the SoCon with 358.
Others nominated: Robert Broom (Mercer), Bryce Hensley (UNCG), Cody Shelton (Samford), Josh Winder (VMI), and Zach Franklin (Western Carolina).
Stanton Schorr, Mercer, Jr.
Mercer’s Stanton Schorr turned in a pair of top-four finishes in April, finishing alone in fourth at the Ryman Hospitality Intercollegiate and tying for second at the SoCon Men’s Golf Championship. Schorr opened his month with a 2-under-par 211 at the Ryman Hospitality Classic in Nashville, Tennessee, turning in a 1-over 72 in the first round and a 1-under 70 in round two to sit in a tie for sixth after the first day of play. The junior from Columbus, Georgia, shot a 2-under 69 in the final round on April 10 to move up two spots. Schorr notched another stellar finish at the SoCon tournament, shooting a 76 on day one and a 73 on day two before smoking the course for a 5-under 67 on the final day to finish at even-par. His 67 was the low round of the tournament and vaulted him 11 spots in the standings on the final day of action. For the month, Schorr turned in a stroke average of 71.17 over six rounds, three of which were under par. He helped the Bears to a pair of fifth-place team finishes.
Others nominated: Geuntae Kim (ETSU), Keller Harper (Furman), Nick Lyerly (UNCG), Andrew Weathers (Chattanooga) and Evan Grenus (Wofford).
Natalie Srinivasan, Furman, So.
Earning SoCon Golfer of the Year honors, Furman’s Natalie Srinivasan finished the regular season strong, posting a 6-over-par 22 at the Bryan National Collegiate on April 7 on her way to being named golfer of the week (April 11). The sophomore finished tied for eighth overall, helping the No. 7 Paladins to a second-place finish as a team. In the 2018 SoCon Women’s Golf Championship, the Spartanburg, South Carolina, native placed second behind teammate Reona Hirai at Moss Creek Golf Club on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Battling windy conditions through all three rounds, Srinivasan finished with a 74 on day three to post a 10-over-par 226 and help the Paladins capture their fourth straight Southern Conference Championship. Srinivasan and Furman will compete in the 2018 NCAA Championship Regional in Tallahassee, Florida, from May 7-9.
Others nominated: Louisa Tichy (UNCG), Payton Schanen (Mercer), Monica San Juan (Chattanooga) and Nicole Chin (Wofford).
Asher Nolting, High Point, Fr., A
High Point attackman Asher Nolting repeated as the offensive player of the month after turning in 23 points on 10 goals and 13 assists in April. The rookie from Greenwood Village, Colorado, who was named the league’s Offensive Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year on Wednesday, helped the Panthers to a 4-0 record and a share of the SoCon regular-season title in the month. Nolting accounted for at least three points in each contest, starting with two goals and four assists at Furman on April 7. He followed that up with four goals and three assists for seven points against VMI a week later, setting a season high in goals and matching his high in points. Nolting had two goals and an assist against Air Force on April 21 and closed his month with two goals and a season-best five assists against Mercer for another seven-point day. He finished the month tied for the SoCon record for single-season points with 64 and picked up a pair of assists in Thursday’s semifinal loss to Jacksonville at the SoCon Men’s Lacrosse Championship to take sole possession of the record.
Others nominated: Brian Wall (Bellarmine), William Holcomb (Furman), McLean Chicquen (Jacksonville), Scott Baird (Mercer) and Teddy Hatfield (Richmond).
Tim Troutner Jr., High Point, Jr., GK
High Point goalkeeper Tim Troutner Jr. posted a goals against average of just 6.08 in four April contests, logging 197 minutes, 30 seconds in goal in helping the Panthers to a 4-0 month and a share of the SoCon regular-season title. The junior from Annapolis, Maryland, turned in a save percentage of .643, making 36 stops and allowing just 20 goals against 109 shots faced. He made nine saves in a 15-7 win at Furman to open the month and followed that up with 10 in just 49:20 at VMI. He added another nine at Air Force before closing the month with eight saves and just one goal allowed in 34 minutes of action against Mercer. Troutner, who allowed just four first-quarter goals in April, also set a SoCon tournament game record with 22 saves in Thursday night’s loss to Jacksonville in the semifinals of the SoCon Men’s Lacrosse Championship.
Others nominated: John Hulsman (Bellarmine), Alec Van de Bovenkamp (Furman), Ryan Beville (Jacksonville), Matt Quinn (Mercer) and Blake Goodman (Richmond).
Kaitlyn Wandelt, Detroit Mercy, R-So., MF
The 2018 SoCon Offensive Player of the Year, Detroit Mercy’s Kaitlyn Wandelt paced the league offensively in the month of April, totaling 41 points. The redshirt sophomore scored at least three goals in all seven games played in April, notching five or more goals four different times. The Sayville, New York, native opened the month with a hat trick in a win over Delaware State before scoring five goals and dishing out four assists just two days later against Howard, registering a career-high nine points. Against Wofford, the midfielder scored seven goals to lead the Titans to a 22-7 victory and was later named SoCon Offensive Player of the Week (April 17). In the next three games, Wandelt combined for 13 goals and four assists, setting up a pivotal season finale between Detroit Mercy and Central Michigan. With the No. 1 seed for the SoCon Women’s Lacrosse Championship on the line, Wandelt registered a hat trick and added one assist as the Titans downed the Chippewas 17-9 to earn the top seed and a share of the regular-season championship.
Others nominated: Natalie Karlen (Central Michigan), Grace Pollak (Furman), Erica Coyne (Mercer) and Hannah Mutch (Wofford).
Audrey Robertson, Mercer, Jr., MF
A key figure in Mercer’s lineup, Audrey Robertson helped the Bears go 4-4 in the month of April to grab the No. 4 seed in the SoCon Championship. The junior won 22 draw controls, picked up 17 ground balls and caused 10 turnovers in eight games. In a win at Wofford on April 8, the midfielder scored a goal while winning a season-high six draw controls, picking up four ground balls and causing two turnovers. Against Old Dominion, Robertson notched her second goal of the month, won five draw controls and forced four turnovers. In a game at Jacksonville, the Stuart, Florida, native held the Dolphins’ Ashtyn Hiron scoreless for just the second time all season. Robertson followed up that performance by picking up six ground balls, winning four draw controls and causing one turnover en route to being named SoCon Defensive Player of the Week (April 24).
Others nominated: Jocelyne Lemay (Central Michigan), Allison McDonough (Detroit Mercy), Courtney Backer (Furman) and Delaney Irwin (Wofford).
MEN’S OUTDOOR TRACK AND FIELD
Emmanuel Tait, Samford, So.
Samford’s Emmanuel Tait competed in three events in April. The sophomore from Alabaster, Alabama, opened his month with a pair of wins at the South Alabama Invitational on April 6, taking first in the 100-meter dash in 10.20 seconds and first in the 200-meter dash in 20.90 seconds, both of which are the top times in the SoCon this season, earning him SoCon Track Athlete of the Week honors. His 100m time is 21st on the NCAA Division I performance list. At the Auburn Tiger Track Classic on April 13-14, Tait ran a 21.70 in the 200m and a 14.41 in the 110-meter hurdles, claiming sixth in the latter event in the second-best SoCon time this season. Tait wrapped up the month at the Georgia Tech Invitational, where he finished seventh in the 110mH in 14.54 seconds and ran a leg on Samford’s 4x100-meter relay unit, which finished fifth in a time of 41.80, the third-best SoCon mark of the spring. Tait also claimed the outdoor monthly honor in April 2017.
Others nominated: Dakota Lamont (Western Carolina).
Tray Oates, Samford, R-Sr.
Samford redshirt senior Tray Oates was undefeated in the pole vault in April, clearing at least 5.50 meters (18 feet, 0.5 inches) each time. Oates began his month with a win at the South Alabama Invitational on April 6, clearing 5.50 meters to pace four Bulldogs in the top seven of the event. He followed that up with a win at the Auburn Tiger Track Classic a week later, clearing 5.60 meters (18 feet, 4.5 inches) in a jump-off to set a facility record and earn his record fifth career outdoor SoCon Field Athlete of the Week honor. The Acworth, Georgia, native capped his month with another win at the Georgia Tech Invitational on April 20, again at 5.50 meters. Oates is fourth on the NCAA Division I performance list with his effort of 5.66 meters (18 feet, 6.75 feet) at the Florida Relays in March. The monthly SoCon honor is the third of Oates’ outdoor career.
Others nominated: Ben Johnson (ETSU) and Scott Peretin (Western Carolina).
WOMEN’S OUTDOOR TRACK AND FIELD
Haley Ward, Samford, Sr.
Samford’s Haley Ward competed twice in April. The senior from Athens, Tennessee, finished 10th in the 1,500-meter run at the Auburn Tiger Track Classic on April 14, turning in a time of 4:46.34. Ward was in action again at the Virginia Challenge the following week, finishing second in the 10,000-meter run in a time of 34:23.19, the best mark in the SoCon this season and good for No. 22 on the East Region performance list.
Others nominated: Dasha Arnaut (Western Carolina) and McLeod Dean (Wofford).
Alisha Blackmon, Western Carolina, Sr.
Western Carolina’s Alisha Blackmon competed at three meets in April. She opened her month at home in the Catamount Classic presented by The Catamount Travel Center on April 13-14, turning in a pair of fourth-place finishes. Her throw of 13.53 meters (44 feet, 4.75 inches) in the shot put ranks second on the SoCon performance list this season, while her toss of 51.18 meters (167 feet, 11 inches) in the hammer was a personal best. She also finished seventh in the discus. At the Virginia Classic a week later, the senior from Charlotte, North Carolina, finished sixth in the hammer with a personal-best throw of 53.36 meters (175 feet, 1 inch), the top mark in the SoCon this season. She was named the SoCon Field Athlete of the Week for her efforts. She closed her month at the ETSU Tri Star Classic, finishing sixth in the hammer and eighth in the discus.
Aly Walker, Chattanooga, So., OF
Chattanooga’s Aly Walker batted .512 with 21 hits, 10 runs scored and nine RBIs in the month of April as Chattanooga reeled off a seven-game win streak and finished the month with a 9-4 record. Walker registered a hit in all but one game and tallied four doubles, three home runs, including a walk-off over Furman, and one triple. The sophomore had seven multi-hit games in the Mocs’ 13 contests. Walker started with two hits in a loss to Austin Peay on April 4 before recording four hits, three RBIs and one run scored in a series sweep over Western Carolina. The Medina, Tennessee, native then belted a two-run home run with two outs in the bottom of the seventh against Furman to secure the 2-0 win. Walker hit her second home run in as many games against Tennessee State on April 18, finishing with two runs scored and one RBI in the contest. Against league-leading UNCG, Walker finished with five hits and two runs scored before recording a pair of three-hit games against ETSU on April 28 and 29. The outfielder ended the month on an eight-game hitting streak.
Others nominated: Lindsey Bert (Furman), Meghan Rud (Mercer), Marisa Sholtes (UNCG), Shelby Maze (Samford) and Hunter Gibbons (Western Carolina).
Lindsey Bert, Furman, Sr., LHP
Furman’s Lindsey Bert went 8-1 with two saves and a 0.77 ERA in 11 appearances and nine starts during the month of April, helping the Paladins to a 12-2 record and an 8-2 mark in conference play. The left-hander tossed six shutouts, including four straight against SoCon foes to end April, allowed just seven runs on 23 hits over 63 2/3 innings of work and walked just 13 batters while striking out 108. Bert started the month with a complete-game win over Winthrop on April 3, fanning 12 in the 6-0 victory. The senior then hurled back-to-back complete games against ETSU, striking out 15 on April 7 in a 3-2 win and nine on April 8 in a 3-1 victory over the Bucs. In a doubleheader against Charleston Southern, Bert combined to throw eight innings and strike out 13. Bert’s lone setback for the month came at Chattanooga on April 14 but the Tallahassee, Florida, native quickly rebounded with four straight wins over conference opponents, working 24 innings and allowing no runs on just six hits while fanning 44 batters. Bert, who currently leads the nation with 293 strikeouts, became the first student-athlete to earn the SoCon’s pitcher of the week award 11 times in a career, is the first to win the pitcher of the month award four times in a career.
Others nominated: Jill McElderry (Mercer), Stephanie Bryden (UNCG) and Celie Hudson (Chattanooga).
Cameron Green, Furman, Sr.
Furman’s Cameron Green finished the month of April with a 7-0 record at the No. 1 singles spot and a 5-1 record at flight one doubles with Jake Munns. The Sydney, Australia, native dropped just one set in singles play and started the month with a win over Clemson’s 59th-ranked Alex Fayrot 7-6 (7-5), 7-6 (7-5) as the Paladins narrowly lost 4-3. The senior earned wins at the No. 1 spot over Samford’s Jake Faundez, Wofford’s Lucas Cerbelli, Mercer’s Sam Philp and ETSU’s Robert Herrera. In doubles action, Furman’s top pair suffered just one setback in the month, falling 6-7 to Mercer’s Philp and Olivier Stuart before avenging that loss with a 6-3 win on April 21 in the semifinals of the SoCon Championship. Green and Munns also picked up wins over Samford, Wofford and ETSU, downing the 2018 SoCon champions Bucs’ top pair 6-0.
Others nominated: David Gonzalez (ETSU), Olivier Stuart (Mercer), Connor Thompson (UNCG), Luke Plaisted (Chattanooga) and Rossouw Norval (Samford).
Katarina Kozarov, Furman, So.
Furman’s Katarina Kozarov led the Paladins to a 6-0 record and SoCon regular-season and tournament championships in the month of April. The 2018 SoCon Player of the Year finished with a 4-0 record at the No. 1 singles spot and a 4-1 record at flight one doubles for the month. Kozarov started the month with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Western Carolina’s Jordan Strickland and two days later secured a crucial point over ETSU’s Alory Pereira, 1-6, 6-2, 6-4, giving Furman the 4-2 win. On April 14, the Novi Sad, Serbia, native defeated Roos van der Zwaan of Samford 7-5, 5-7, 6-3, helping Furman earn the 5-2 win. At the SoCon Championship, Kozarov’s first two singles matches were unfinished but the sophomore clinched the winning point for the Paladins with a 7-5, 6-4 win over Pereira on April 22, giving Furman a 4-1 win over ETSU in the championship match. In doubles action, Kozarov paired with Katty Weymouth for the first two matches, going 1-1 against Western Carolina and ETSU. Kozarov then paired up with Gabby Rodriguez and Aryn Greene for the last three matches, winning against UNCG 6-3, Chattanooga 6-3 and ETSU 7-6 (7-4).
Others nominated: Alejandra Morales (ETSU), Katie Sidor (Mercer), Nancy Bridges (UNCG) and Bogdana Zaporozhets (Chattanooga).
Southern Conference April Athletes of the Month
Baseball – player Collin Fleischer, VMI
Baseball – pitcher Adam Scott, Wofford
Men’s golf Stanton Schorr, Mercer
Women’s golf Natalie Srinivasan, Furman
Men’s lacrosse – offense Asher Nolting, High Point
Men’s lacrosse – defense Tim Troutner Jr., High Point
Women’s lacrosse – offense Kaitlyn Wandelt, Detroit Mercy
Women’s lacrosse – defense Audrey Robertson, Mercer
Men’s outdoor track and field – track Emmanuel Tait, Samford
Men’s outdoor track and field – field Tray Oates, Samford
Women’s outdoor track and field – track Haley Ward, Samford
Women’s outdoor track and field – field Alisha Blackmon, Western Carolina
Softball – player Aly Walker, Chattanooga
Softball – pitcher Lindsey Bert, Furman
Men’s tennis Cameron Green, Furman
Women’s tennis Katarina Kozarov, Furman