Conway grad Young, CCU teammate Owings in semis

ccubase-37trotFormer Conway High standout and Coastal Carolina junior designated hitter G.K. Young was named a semifinalist for the Dick Howser Trophy, given annually to the top player in collegiate and administered by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association.

Young is one of 43 players to be semifinalists and is the fourth Chanticleer to be considered for one of the nation’s top honors, joining Mike Costanzo (2005), Anthony Meo (2010) and Tommy La Stella (2011).

The Conway native is among the nation’s top hitters and, despite being just a junior, ranks 24th among active Division I players with 26 career home runs. Young, who has hit nine home runs over his last 20 games, leads the Big South in home runs (15) and RBI (56), is fourth in runs scored (50) and ranks 15th in the league with his.339 batting average.

Young has reached base safely (hit/walk/hit by pitch) in 48 of CCU’s 53 games this season and has a hit in 43 of 53 games. He recently had a streak of reaching base safely snap at 20 games, getting a hit in 18 of those.

* Coastal Carolina senior Connor Owings was named one of 42 semifinalists for the Gregg Olson Award, presented by Toolshed Sports. The award honors college baseball’s breakout player of the year. The annual award is given to a top amateur baseball player who elevates his game to an elite level throughout the season.

Owings, who has battled kidney disease during his collegiate career, was on the 2014 Gregg Olson Award Watch List during his sophomore season. That year, he went from a .200 hitter as a freshman to being named first team All-Big South after batting .326 with 14 doubles, four home runs and 34 RBI, while starting all 57 games.

This season, Owings, who is rated the 13th-best outfielder in the nation by D1Baseball.com, has a streak of 192 consecutive games started spanning the 2014, ’15 and ’16 seasons and ranks among the national leaders in batting average, home runs, on base percentage and slugging percentage.

After a 4-for-4 outing Thursday and going 1-for-2 with a home run Friday, Owings is batting .396 with 51 runs scored, 14 doubles, two triples, 14 home runs, a .725 slugging percentage and a .504 on base percentage. He is additionally 14-of-15 in stolen bases and he leads the team with 38 walks.

In the Big South statistics through Friday’s action, Owings ranks first in slugging, second in batting, second in on base percentage, second in total bases, third in home runs (one behind teammates G.K. Young and Zach Remillard), third in runs scored, third in walks and seventh in RBI.

Prior to Friday night’s action, Owings ranked 12th in slugging percentage, 14th in on base percentage, 21st in batting and 40th in home runs.

Photo by CCU Athletics

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