APPLETON, Wisc. – The NCAA Division III Baseball Championship will begin on Friday, and as is the standard schedule, the pre-championship banquet was held on Thursday night. Part of the event includes the announcement of the Elite 89 Award, and for the second time this academic year, Salisbury has earned the honor, as junior Dan Fein won the award.
The Elite 89, an award founded by the NCAA in 2009, recognizes the true essence of the student-athlete by honoring the individual who has reached the pinnacle of competition at the national championship level in his or her sport, while also achieving the highest academic standard among his or her peers. The Elite 89 is presented to the student-athlete with the highest cumulative grade-point average participating at the finals site for each of the NCAA's 89 championships.
Fein, a junior from Southbury, Conn., carries a 4.0 GPA with a major in math. His GPA is the highest of any player on the eight teams which have qualified for the national championship. On the field, Fein has posted an 8-1 record with a 3.71 ERA.
This marks the third Elite 89 Award ever for Salisbury as Haley Quillen picked up the honor this past fall for field hockey, while Sean Hickey picked up the award for men's lacrosse in 2010.
Fein and the Sea Gulls will begin their quest toward the first national championship in program history on Friday, taking on the State University of New York at Cortland. First pitch is scheduled for 5:30 p.m., eastern time.