The Seahawks returned to the NCAA tournament for a seventh time and won the Colonial Athletic Association tournament for a fourth in 2015.
UNCW baseball continued to be a model of excellence both on the field and in the classroom, fashioning a 41-18 overall record and a 18-6 Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) record. The Seahawks were 28-6 at home and 10-12 while away. They went 3-0 on neutral ground.
According to UNCWSports.com, the following are takeaways from the 2015 baseball season:
- The Seahawks advanced to the NCAA tournament for a seventh time and the third time in the last four seasons. UNCW topped Tulane twice, but fell to top-ranked and host LSU twice. Both losses came by the score of 2-0. It was UNCW’s second appearance in Baton Rouge, with the first coming in 2003, the program’s first NCAA tournament bid.
- UNCW claimed its fourth CAA title as it swept three games in the post season tournament host by the College of Charleston. The second-seeded Seahawks opened the tournament with a convincing 16-7 win over third-seed Northeastern. UNCW advanced to the championship round with a 4-3 win over top-seed Charleston and topped the 13th-ranked Cougars, 7-6, in the championship game. Corey Dick was named the tournament’s most outstanding player, becoming the first season to earn the award since Chris Hatcher in 2006.
- The Seahawks finished 25th overall in the final NCAA RPI report. UNCW faced off against fellow top-25 programs LSU (3), Florida State (8), Charleston (15) and Coastal Carolina (19). The Seahawks had two games rained out against NC State (22).
- Led by a strong bullpen that totaled 28 wins, the Seahawks finished the 2015 season with a 41-18 record. It marked the sixth time the team reached 40 wins and the first time since 2008. In conference play, the Seahawks posted an 18-6 record and finished second, four games ahead of Northeastern. UNCW’s winning percentage of .695 ranked 21st nationally.
- UNCW led the CAA at the gate, leading the way in total attendance and per game average. In 2015, the Seahawks drew 37,552 for the season and average 1,173 over 26 dates. The high mark for the season was 3,581 against North Carolina in a 6-5, 12-inning loss. That total ranked third on UNCW’s list since the 199 season and the second highest against the Tar Heels. The Seahawks concluded their season playing four straight games with listed attendances above 10,500. Against LSU, the announced crowds were 11,251 and 11, 301. Both games were aired live on the SEC Network.
- The Seahawks landed three on the All-CAA squads, including Jordan Ramsey (RP), Steven Linkous (OF) and Zach Shields (OF) on the first team. Second-team honorees were Terence Connelly (3b), Gavin Stupienski (C) and Casey Golden (OF). Kennard McDowell (SS) earned third-team honors while Austin Magestro (P) was named to the All-Rookie squad. Ramsey also earned All-Academic honors.
- Ramsey was named ABCA Third-Team All-America while Stupienski and Corey Dick were named ABCA All-East second team. Ramsey became UNCW’s sixth ABCA All-America honoree since 2005 and just the second pitcher during that span (Brad Holt, 2008).
- Head coach Mark Scalf concluded the season with 799 career wins and will enter the 2016 season looking to crack the 800 mark. He is the winningest coach in the history of the athletics department. Scalf also leads the conference with 326 wins in the CAA.
- Five Seahawks were selected in the MLB draft with Ramsey going the highest to the Cincinnati Reds in the seventh round. Zach Shields also was selected by the Reds, going in the 10th round. On day three, Evan Phillips was tabbed by the Atlanta Braves in the 17th round followed by Nick Monroe in the 21st round to San Diego. William Shepley rounded out the UNCW draft list by being picked by Baltimore in the 31st round. Also being selected in the draft were incoming players, Eric Jenkins and Joe Peeler. Jenkins was selected by Texas in the second round with the 45th pick overall while Peeler signed after being selected in the 25th round by Seattle.
- Steven Linkous stole a career-high and UNCW junior season record 30 bases in 2016. The 30 steals were the most by a Seahawk since Michael Bass swiped 26 during the 2013 season. Linkous went 4-for-4 in stolen bases, also setting a career high and tying the school record last tied by Chip Gawey in 2004 against Campbell.
- Offensively UNCW exploded in 2015, ranking in the top-20 of four categories in the NCAA rankings. The Seahawks were 13th in Batting Average (.303), 16th in scoring (7 runs per game), 20th in Runs (412) and 17th in hits with 627. Linkous ranked 22nd in runs scored (62) while Terence Connelly was 23rd in on base average (.478).
- In the classroom, UNCW was one of 32 schools at the Division I level to finish in the top 10 percent of the division in APR score. It was the third straight season the Seahawks were honored.
- In January, the Seahawks received a department-record $1 million dollar gift from House of Raeford President and CEO, Bob Johnson. The gift was made to help construct an indoor hitting facility for the program.