Effingham's Beals Named To CCIW All-Conference First Team


Published on May 15 2019 6:18 am
Last Updated on May 15 2019 6:19 am

DECATUR -- Millikin University Head Baseball Coach Brandon Townsend and five Big Blue players were honored by the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin (CCIW) with the announcement of the 2019 CCIW All-Conference Baseball Team on May 14.

Townsend was named the CCIW Co-Head Coach of the Year after leading Millikin to a 23-20 overall record and a 14-10 finish in the conference. The Big Blue finished third in the regular season standings earning Millikin a spot in the CCIW Tournament for the first time in 1990. The Big Blue went 2-2 in the tournament finishing in third place. Townsend shares the award with Ed Mathey of North Central of lead the Cardinals to their fifth straight regular season title and its third straight conference tournament title.

Millikin senior Jon Walters (Normal, Central Catholic H.S.), sophomore Brent Beals (Effingham, H.S.) and junior Adam Zuk (Plainfield, Plainfield North H.S.) were named to the CCIW All-Conference First Team while senior Mason Bruce (Decatur, Mt. Zion H.S.) and senior Connor Gross (Bement, H.S.) were All-Conference Second Team selections.

Walters was named to the First Team as an outfielder leading Millikin with a .348 average with nine home runs and 42 RBI. Walters tied for the conference lead in home runs this season.

Beals was named to the First Team as a utility player. Beals played second base and pitched for the Big Blue this season. At the plate, he hit .298 with four home runs and 24 RBI. He was 0-2 on the mound with a 3.55 ERA.

Zuk was a First Team selection as a pitcher after going 4-2 with a 2.42 ERA with 57 strikeouts. Zuk had the third lowest ERA in the conference and was second in opponents’ batting average at .195.

Bruce was named to the All-Conference Second Team outfielder for the second time in his career after earning the honor in 2017. Bruce hit .293 with six home runs and 45 RBI. He was second in the CCIW in RBI in all games and first in the conference in CCIW games only with 32 RBI.

Gross was a Second Team selection as a pitcher for the second straight season. In 2019, Gross was 7-4 with a 3.62 ERA and 69 strikeouts. Gross was second in the league in innings pitched with 74.2 and tied for fourth in strikeouts.