Baseball | Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Stalker Selected Third Team All-America by ABCA
SALEM, ORE. -- After leading the nation in home runs per game and helping Willamette University rank first in team home runs per game, junior first baseman Kyle Stalker (Bellevue, WA/Sammamish HS) has been chosen Third Team All-America for NCAA Division III, as selected by the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA). Stalker set school records with 22 home runs and 63 runs batted in this season.
Stalker ranked first in Division III with 0.56 home runs per game. He was second in the nation with 1.62 RBIs per game.
The ABCA selected 15 athletes as First Team All-America, with 20 players on the Second Team and 16 on the Third Team. A combined total of just four first basemen were named to the three All-America teams. Willamette amassed 66 home runs as a team and averaged 1.65 home runs per game.
Stalker was at the center of Willamette's power-hitting offense and many of his 22 home runs left the ballpark by significant margins. He was one of five Bearcats who blasted seven or more homers. Stalker achieved a .361 batting average and played in 39 of 40 games. He led the team with 27 walks and hit an impressive .382 with runners in scoring position.
He belted three homers in a single game against Lewis & Clark College on March 1 and hit two homers in four other games. He earned a .844 slugging percentage for the season to rank seventh in Division III. He was chosen NWC Player of the Week on March 4 after smacking seven home runs and going 7 for 15 at the plate during a 4-1 week for the Bearcats.
Stalker led the Northwest Conference in home runs, RBIs and total bases (124). He scored 44 runs and finished the year with a .469 on-base percentage. He was named First Team All-Northwest Conference and was selected NWC Player of the Year. He earned First Team All-West Region honors from the ABCA.
Defensively, he recorded 319 putouts and earned 20 assists. He committed just three errors and achieved a .991 fielding percentage. He was involved in 35 of Willamette's 38 double plays.
He owns a .305 career batting average in three seasons with the Bearcats. He is WU's all-time leader with 36 career home runs. He has achieved 105 hits, 109 RBIs and 73 runs during his career.
Willamette finished the 2008 season with a 20-20 overall record, including 16-15 (5th place) in the Northwest Conference. In addition to hitting 66 home runs, the Bearcats connected for 66 doubles, scored 332 runs and achieved a .308 team batting average. WU averaged 8.3 runs per game.