Rams excel on ball diamonds, land NCAA qualifier in shot put
Cornell College fielded a pair of 20-win teams on the ball diamonds and capped a successful spring season with an NCAA qualifier in track and field.
Baseball enjoyed a sharp resurgence under third-year coach Seth Wing. The youthful Rams notched their 20th victory by late April and finished 21–17, which tied for the second-most wins in school history.
The Rams’ runner-up finish in the Midwest Conference South Division (9–7) propelled them into the conference tournament for the first time since 2004. They achieved the program’s first winning season in 11 years, behind a starting lineup consisting of only one upperclassman.
Junior shortstop Beriah Quick and first-year outfielder John Tesensky were named to the All-MWC South Division First Team. Quick, who hit .401 and reached base in all 36 games played, was tabbed Third Team All-Central Region by the American Baseball Coaches Association.
Head coach Shanda Ness guided the softball program to its fourth consecutive 20-win campaign. The Rams wound up 24–9 overall, one win shy of the school record. The team tied for second place in the South Division at 7–3, but was denied a postseason berth on a tiebreaker.
Senior pitcher Jackie Sernek and junior first baseman Kari Martin both were repeat first team all-conference selections, becoming the first Rams to accomplish the feat in softball since Jillea Monroe (1992–95). Sernek graduated as the program’s career leader for complete-game shutouts (15), while Martin led the team in batting average (.388) for the third consecutive season.
Madison Acree represented Cornell at the NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships. She placed 13th in the women’s shot put in her first trip to nationals. Acree wrapped a stellar junior campaign in which she established school records in the shot put (outdoor, 46-0.50), hammer throw (156-5), and weight throw (50-9.50).
On the track, senior Laura Ettlin (5000) and sophomore Sam Martinez (3000 steeplechase) picked up event titles at the MWC Outdoor Championships. The Rams had nine all-conference performances.