AMERICUS -- Georgia Southwestern outfielder Michel Coffey and designated hitter Corey Benson were named to the 2011 All-Peach Belt Conference Second Team as announced by the PBC this weekend at a banquet in Columbus on the eve of the league's championship tournament at Golden Park.
Coffey, a sophomore from Dublin, started all 48 games this spring for the Hurricanes and led the team in several categories, including: batting average (.360), hits (73), total bases (89) and stolen base percentage (.857). His 20 multi-hit games were a team best and he ended the season on a 10-game hitting streak. Coffey finished the regular season ranked third in the PBC in hits and 11th in batting average.
Benson, a freshman from Loganville, started 47 games for GSW in 2011. He was the team leader in slugging percentage (.440) and home runs (4). Benson compiled 12 multi-hit games, as well as seven-game and six-game hitting streaks during the spring. He finished the season with three or more hits in two of the last four games and was named PBC Freshman of the Week on Apr. 25.
For the first time, the conference awarded co-Players of the Year for Francis Marion's Buddy Sosnoskie and Georgia College's Shawn Ward. The honor for Sosnoskie was the start of a big night for FMU, which swept all the major awards with Don Sandifer named the Pitcher of the Year, Michael Wilson the Freshman of the Year and Art Inabinet the Coach of the Year.
REIGNING PLAYER OF YEAR CREWS HELD OUT OF DWS GOLF'S STATE TOURNAMENT AS KNIGHTS FINISH FOURTH:
ST. SIMON'S ISLAND -- Not having Josh Crews turned out to be a game-changer for the Deerfield-Windsor golf team.
Crews, The Herald's reigning co-Player of the Year and last year's GISA Class AAA state low medalist, didn't make the trip with the team to the state tournament Monday as Deerfield finished fourth after shooting one of its worst scores of the season -- a 326 -- at a most inopportune time.
DWS coach Gordy Gruhl, who declined to say why Crews was held out of the state tournament, did say that having Crews, a sophomore, in the lineup would've given the Knights a far better chance.
"You have to have at least one player (shoot a low score) to have a chance to win this tournament and we didn't do that (Monday)," Gruhl said. "But I'm not displeased with fourth place out of 13 teams."
John Leach, Hunter Brooks and eighth-grader Charlie Ellis -- making his first varsity start in Crews' place -- all shot team lows of 81, while Carson Glass fired an 83.
Stratford won the tournament with a 294, followed by Tiftarea (326) and Mount de Sales (324).