St. Thomas Aquinas Sweeps Baseball All-Conference Awards

After putting together a record breaking 2012 season, the St. Thomas Aquinas Spartans swept through the ECC Baseball All-Conference major awards as voted on by the conference’s coaches. Senior shortstop, Frank Salerno (New City, N.Y.) is the Player of the Year, senior pitcher Matt Marotta (Suffern, N.Y.) takes home the Pitcher of the Year, freshman third baseman Stanley Susana (Bronx, N.Y.) earned the Rookie of the Year, and head coach Scott Muscat was selected by his peers as the Coach of the Year.

Salerno put together a remarkable final season in a Spartans uniform, ranking in the top-three in the conference in almost every offensive category. In 49 games, Salerno has compiled an eye-popping 70 hits to post a .376 batting average, good for second in the conference. Salerno also ranked second in the conference in on-base percentage at .452 and was a terror on the base paths once he reached, compiling an ECC leading 38 stolen bases and 54 runs. His .468 slugging percentage and 33 runs batted in were also among the top three in the conference.

Marotta returned from red-shirt season in 2011 to become the top hurler in the conference. In 13 appearances and nine starts, Marotta posted an 8-1 record and also picked up two saves. His eight wins put him in a tie for the most in the ECC this season. Despite being backed by the top offense in the conference, Marotta earned his wins in dominating fashion. Batters hit a meager .181 against him in 70 innings pitched and he also finished second in the conference in earned run average (1.67) and third in strikeouts (69). Marotta, who also is second in all of Division II with 4.98 hits allowed per nine innings, accomplished a rare feat this season, tossing a no-hitter with five strikeouts against Northeast 10 power, Adelphi.

Susana was another force in the powerful Spartans’ lineup in his rookie season. The third baseman, who was a three-time ECC weekly award winner, finished in the top-ten in the conference in almost every offensive category. He led the league with seven triples and 90 total bases, while also coming in among the leaders in batting average (.360), hits (62), runs (26), homeruns (3), RBI (29), and slugging percentage (.523).

St. Thomas Aquinas head coach Scott Muscat was named the 2012 Coach of the Year by his peers. Muscat guided the Spartans to a program record 33 wins and the East Coast Conference Regular Season title. Currently, the Spartans are ranked No. 5 in the East Region.

2012 ECC Baseball All-Conference Team:
Player of the Year: Frank Salerno,Sr., SS, St. Thomas Aquinas
Pitcher of the Year: Matt Marotta,Sr., St. Thomas Aquinas
Rookie of the Year: Stanley Susana, Fr., 3B, St. Thomas Aquinas
Coach of the Year: Scott Muscat, St. Thomas Aquinas

First Team:
C: George Wargo, St. Thomas Aquinas
1B: Eric Schlitter, Bridgeport
2B: Andrew Abreu, Dowling
3B: Stanley Susana, St. Thomas Aquinas
SS: Frank Salerno, St. Thomas Aquinas
OF: Joe Antenucci, St. Thomas Aquinas
OF: Joe Candela, Dowling
OF: Matt Ranaudo, Bridgeport
DH: Mike Russo, St. Thomas Aquinas
UTL: Kevin Chenicek, C.W. Post
SP: Bo Budkevics, C.W. Post
SP: Matt Marotta, St. Thomas Aquinas
SP: Marc Rutlegde, Dowling
RP: Anthony Zapulla, C.W. Post

Second Team:
C: Ray McCourt, Molloy
1B: Andrew Hancsak, St. Thomas Aquinas
2B: John Galanoudis, Molloy
3B: Tom Tolan, C.W. Post
SS: Keith Herring, C.W. Post
OF: Nick Barbalato, STAC
OF: Carlos Guzman, Molloy
OF: Vinny Iacono, C.W. Post
DH: Anthony Brunetti, C.W. Post
UTL: Joe Salanitri, Queens
SP: Tyler Badamo, Dowling
SP: Eric Cooper, St. Thomas Aquinas
SP: James Stone, C.W. Post
RP: Tom Bammann, Dowling