Conrad and Baranik Highlight All-Conference Accolades

By ULL Assistant Sports Information Director Jeff Schneider:

MOBILE, Ala. – Jace Conrad was named the Player of the Year and Carson Baranik was named the Pitcher of the Year as the second-ranked Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns baseball team landed nine student-athletes on the 2014 All-Sun Belt Conference Baseball teams, the league office announced on Tuesday evening.

"Anytime you have a player that is picked by the peers in the conference for their hard work and effort it's a good thing," head coach Tony Robichaux said. "This is a game that is very tough to be good and consistent in. When you are the best player in your conference it says a lot. This is an enormous accolade for Jace and Carson and I feel like they both deserve it. Jace has played with a lot of energy and intensity all year. This is what happens when you can do that for an entire season. You usually separate yourself from the rest of the field."

Conrad became the first Ragin' Cajuns player in program history to earn Sun Belt Player of the Year honors. On the year, Conrad is hitting .367, which ranks second in the Sun Belt. He is also second in hits (79) and hit by pitch (16), third in runs (51) and doubles (19), fourth in RBI (53), fifth in total bases (125), sixth in slugging (.581) and on base percentage (.440), seventh in sac bunts (8) and eighth in triples (3). The junior is tied for the team lead with 24 two-out RBI. Conrad was named a semifinalist for the Dick Howser Award and was also added to the Gregg Olson Award watch list.

Baranik is the fourth Cajuns pitcher to earn Pitcher of the Year honors joining Hunter Moody (2006), Austin Faught (2005) and Scott Dohmann (2000). The Bossier City, La., native became the first 10-game winner since Moody in 2006. Baranik ranks 11th in the nation in wins and ranks second in the Sun Belt in opponents batting average (.222), fourth in innings pitched (90.1), fifth in ERA (2.99) and seventh in strikeouts (66). Baranik was named the conference pitcher of the week twice this season and was also named the Collegiate Baseball Hall of Fame Pitcher of the Year watch list.

"Carson has been consistent for us all season long," Robichaux added. "This is an award where you can't be good for just one weekend or one good month and be all-conference. You have to do it throughout the entire season, and night in and night out he has been good for us. It's good that he has been rewarded for his hard work and effort. He went through a tough time in his life and he was able to get through it and it has made him both a better pitcher and a better person."

Robichaux earns his fourth Sun Belt Coach of the Year award with his last coming in 2007 after guiding the squad to the most regular season wins in conference history and tying the school record for wins.

Conrad and Baranik were two of five Cajuns to be named to the All-Sun Belt First Team. Baranik was named as a starting pitcher along with senior Cody Boutte (7-0, 2.77 ERA). Boutte stepped into the starting role in conference play an excelled with the second best ERA in the league and was tied for third in wins.

Conrad was named as a second baseman and joins shortstop Blake Trahan (.326, 3 HR, 37 RBI) and outfielder Caleb Adams (.375, 10 HR, 35 RBI) as the Louisiana position players on the list. Trahan was named to the Brooks Wallace Award watch list, while Adams is both a semifinalist for the Golden Spikes Award and the Dick Howser Award. Adams leads the league in average, on base percentage (.496), slugging percentage (.690), runs (57), and triples (6).

Starting pitcher Austin Robichaux (7-2, 3.06 ERA), catcher Mike Strentz (.242, 9 HR, 36 RBI), third baseman Ryan Leonards (.318, 4 HR, 30 RBI) and outfielder Seth Harrison (.338, 9 HR, 57 RBI) were named to the All-Sun Belt Second Team.

"I think the number of players we have on this list is reflective of our record and our body of work," Robichaux said. "I appreciate the other coaches who took the time to vote for our players. To have your peers vote for you means a lot."

A complete list of the all-conference awards follows:

2014 All-SBC First/Second Teams and Postseason Award Winners

2014 Sun Belt Baseball First Team All-Conference

Carson Baranik (Louisiana, Junior, SP)

Cody Boutte (Louisiana, Senior, SP)

Justin Hageman (WKU, Senior, SP)

Ian Tompkins (WKU, Junior, RP)

Joey Roach (Georgia State, Sophomore, C)

Nic Wilson (Georgia State, Senior, 1B)

Jace Conrad (Louisiana, Junior, 2B)

Blake Trahan (Louisiana, Sophomore, SS)

Ben Crumpton (UALR, Sr., 3B)

Chase Raffield (Georgia State, Senior, OF)

Caleb Adams (Louisiana, Junior, OF)

Ryan Bottger (UT Arlington, Junior, OF)

Matt Shortall (UT Arlington, Senior, DH)

Cory Geisler (Texas State, Sophomore, UTL)

2014 Sun Belt Baseball Second Team All-Conference

Austin Robichaux (Louisiana, Junior, SP)

Taylor Black (Texas State, RS-Junior, SP)

Austen Williams (Texas State, Junior, SP)

Marc Skinner (Troy, Freshman, RP)

Michael Strentz (Louisiana, Junior, C)

Ryan Church (WKU, Junior, 1B)

Garrett Pitts (Troy, Senior, 2B)

Garrett Mattlage (Texas State, Junior, SS)

Ryan Leonards (Louisiana, Senior, 3B)

Seth Harrison (Louisiana, Junior, OF)

Cole Gleason (South Alabama, Junior, OF)

Anderson Miller (WKU, Sophomore, OF)

David Hall (Troy, Junior, DH)

Tanner Rockwell (UALR, Junior, UTL)

2014 Sun Belt Baseball Player of the Year

Jace Conrad (Louisiana, Junior, 2B)

2014 Sun Belt Baseball Pitcher of the Year

Carson Baranik (Louisiana, Junior, SP)

2014 Sun Belt Baseball Freshman of the Year

Marc Skinner (Troy, Freshman, RP)

2014 Sun Belt Baseball Ron Maestri Coach of the Year

Tony Robichaux, Louisiana