College home run spectacle returning to Oregon
By J. Patrick Eaken
Press Sports Editor
The National Amateur Baseball Federation will conduct its summer collegiate home run derby for the third consecutive year at Oregon’s William P. Coontz Recreation Complex.
On Friday, Aug. 4 at 7:30 p.m., college baseball players from throughout the country will arrive in Oregon for the derby at Ousky Field, Clay’s home field. The players will represent the 16 teams who qualify for NABF College World Series Aug. 3-6 at Ned Skeldon Stadium, Steller Field, Scott Park, and Bowman Park.
In 2005, Mike Burger of the Pittsburgh Pandas ( West Virginia Univ.) took home the honor of home run derby champion out of 28 entries. Two other finalists included Jeff Coyle ( Erskin College) and Frank Terzo ( Queens College), teammates for the Shekinah Angels out of the Federation of Amateur Baseball Leagues based on Long Island, N.Y.
The derby winner in 2004 was David Freeze ( Univ. of South Alabama) of the St. Louis, Mo. based Brentwood Bullfrogs.
The college world series has a history of showcasing future professional stars. Little league players are being sought to shag fly balls and may show up for the home run derby and World Series in uniform. Call 419-482-6612 or Rob Gladieux at 419-215-9081.
Tournament passes are $15 to see all 31 9-inning wood bat baseball games and a day pass is $5. There is no cost for admission to the home run derby.
The Northwood Recreation Department has already starting selling 50/50 tickets leading up to the championship. The winner will be announced prior to the televised final, which begins at 7 p.m. on Aug. 6 at Ned Skeldon Stadium.
Tickets are $1 each or six for $5. Call Alan Singlar at 419-693-8483, Dean Edwards at 419-698-9616, Shari Laviolette at 419-666-5685, Russ Sparks at 419-666-4821, or Rob Gladieux of the Midwest Amateur Baseball Association at 419-215-9081 or 419-482-6612.
The Erie Shores Collegiate League is host of the 2006 College World Series for the third straight year. The Oregon based Ohio Trojans are members of the ESCL and had the opportunity to qualify for the World Series this past weekend in the ESCL league tournament at Walsh University in Canton.
The Trojans were the first team in Oregon to play in the wood bat summer collegiate ESCL since the Maumee Bay Buccaneers, which played from 1999-2002. The Buccaneers qualified for a National Amateur Baseball Federation Major Division regional berth in 1999 and were ESCL champions in 2000 with a 17-5 record in league play.
The Trojans were fourth in the ESCL this season with a 9-15 record, finishing just ahead of the Ohio Storm. Canton Big E won the regular season championship with an 18-6 record and already qualified for the College World Series.
Overall, the Trojans were 14-16, including wins over teams from the Great Lakes Instructional Baseball League and the visiting Newmarket Hawks from Canada.
The Trojans’ general manager is Steve Timofeev of Oregon, and on the field the Trojans were coached by Randy Coy and Dan Rober. Local players included Urbana pitchers Billy Dyer (Woodmore) and Shane Pfouts (Lake), Bowling Green pitcher Chad Albright (Eastwood), Tiffin catcher Brad Coy (Clay), Adrian infielder Brad Timofeev (Clay), and Owens infielder and pitcher Rob Hufford (Clay). Dyer is also a catcher and Pfouts, who is injured, also plays in the outfield.
Many of this year’s summer collegiate team played with the Ohio Trojans travel program since they were youngsters. This is the first season the Trojan program has moved into the NABF College Division — created in 1980’s for players age 22 and under (some 23-year-olds can play).
“I have had the great opportunity to have coached Rob (Hufford) since he was 11 years old, playing travel baseball,” business manager Steve Timofeev said. “Rob has always been a big, strong hitter. He started pitching again in his senior year in high school and has done a great job. He has a good fastball and can hit the corners well. He is a great competitor and plays the game at the highest level, stays very focused on the game and knows his responsibilities.”
Timofeev’s son, Brad, was has a .313 on-base percentage from his leadoff spot, plus a 2.40 ERA in 16 innings pitching. As a third baseman, he has a .909 fielding percentage with 26 putouts and 24 assists, and is looking to earn spot on the Adrian College varsity after playing jayvee last year.
Timofeev said Brad Coy (5’10, 185), who was hitting .293 with five RBI, played for him in the Junior Eagles baseball program. Coy is in his first season with the Trojans, and says this may be his last year for baseball because he is transferring to Ohio State, where he may try out for the rugby team.
The 6’2, 195-pound Chad Albright received Ohio Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Week honors and was named Heidelberg’s most valuable pitcher and rookie of the year after compiling a 4-2 record as a freshman. However, he is transferring to Bowling Green where he hopes to join outfielder and former Eastwood teammate Kevin Leady on the Falcon roster.
Dyer, a 6’0, 225 pound freshman at Urbana, is a right handed pitcher and catcher who earned first team SLL honors while at Woodmore in both his junior and senior seasons.
Shane Pfouts suffered an injury (he suffered a torn labrum) that never did fully heal, and was due to have surgery to repair the tear on July 13. It has cost him a chance to return this summer to play for the Trojans it cost him much of last season as a pitcher/outfielder at Urbana University.
Other Trojans include two Saginaw Valley State players — Patrick Kenny and Reed Walker; three Bowling Green Falcons — Julian Bostelman, Dan Horvath, and Jeff Telmanik; two Toledo Rockets — Todd Thomas and Jason Whiteside; and Chad Baas (Adrian); Clay Tingley (St. Joseph’s); Taylor Muehlfeld (Adrian); Phil Reed (Evangel); and Nicholas Picciano (Defiance).