Scrolling Headlines:

UMass women’s basketball handles Duquesne at home -

January 16, 2017

UMass men’s basketball’s late comeback falls short after blowing 15-point first-half lead -

January 15, 2017

UMass hockey outlasted at home against No. 6 UMass Lowell -

January 14, 2017

Hailey Leidel hits second buzzer beater of the season to give UMass women’s basketball win over Davidson -

January 13, 2017

UMass football hosts Maine at Fenway Park in 2017 -

January 12, 2017

UMass men’s basketball snaps losing streak and upsets Dayton Wednesday night at Mullins Center -

January 11, 2017

UMass women’s track and field takes second at Dartmouth Relays -

January 10, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 5 Boston University at Frozen Fenway -

January 8, 2017

UMass professor to make third appearance on ‘Jeopardy!’ -

January 8, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers brutal loss on road against Saint Joseph’s -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops thirds straight, falls to VCU 81-64 -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops tightly-contested conference matchup against George Mason Wednesday night -

January 4, 2017

Late-game defense preserves UMass women’s basketball’s win against rival Rhode Island -

January 4, 2017

AIC shuts out UMass hockey 3-0 at Mullins Center -

January 4, 2017

UMass professor to appear as contestant on ‘Jeopardy!’ Thursday night -

January 4, 2017

Penalties plague UMass hockey in Mariucci Classic championship game -

January 2, 2017

UMass men’s basketball falls in A-10 opener to St. Bonaventure and its veteran backcourt -

December 30, 2016

UMass woman’s basketball ends FIU Holiday Classic with 65-47 loss to Drexel -

December 29, 2016

UMass men’s basketball finishes non-conference schedule strong with win over Georgia State -

December 28, 2016

Brett Boeing joins UMass hockey for second half of season -

December 28, 2016

UMass baseball announces awards from 2016 season

(Judith Gibson-Okunieff/ Daily Collegian)

(Judith Gibson-Okunieff/ Daily Collegian)

The Massachusetts baseball team announced its 2016 recipients of its annual baseball awards last Wednesday as John Jennings, Dylan Morris and Mike Hart received the three awards at the team’s annual golf outing earlier this month.

Jennings was honored as the team’s most valuable player of 2016. The catcher had a standout final season for the Minutemen as the co-captain hit .298 with a team-high nine home runs, which no UMass player has accomplished since Peter Copa in 2011. After an injury-plagued 2015 season, Jennings rebounded nicely as he was one of two players to start in every game for the Minutemen, including 40 games at catcher. In addition to earning UMass honors, Jennings was also named to the Atlantic 10 all-conference second team. He was fourth in the conference in slugging percentage, hitting10 doubles and two triples, and also led the Minutemen in multiple categories including runs batted (32) and runs scored (30). Jennings also had a team-high nine multi-RBI games.

Newly announced captain for the 2017 season Dylan Morris earned the Dennis DellaPiana Memorial Award for exemplifying courage, determination and sportsmanship. The award was first instituted in May 1966 and honors the memory of Dennis DellaPiana, a student-athlete at UMass who tragically died in April of 1966 during his senior year after a long battle with Hodgkin’s disease.

Morris was the only other player to start in all 45 games in 2016 along with Jennings. He ranked second behind Jennings in RBIs and runs scored with 30 and 28, respectively. The outfielder hit .253 finishing the season with 47 hits, two home runs and eight doubles. Morris also had the team’s longest hitting streak of the season with hits in 14 straight games. He will be looked upon for leadership and a strong presence at the top of the lineup in his final season for the Minutemen.

Hart, the other captain for the upcoming season, was given the coaches award for most improved player of 2016 in recognition of his breakout season for the Minutemen. Hart played in all but two games, ending the season with a team-best .313 batting average with 14 RBIs. The Lowell, Massachusetts native scored 25 runs and hit three home runs and seven doubles. In his first season as a full-time starter, Hart proved worthy of the decision.

Hart and Morris will take their leadership into the 2017 season that features a veteran squad. Losing Jennings in the middle of the order will hurt, but the team is returning six starters with three players ready to step in for the graduated seniors. 2016 was a disappointing season for the Minutemen, who finished 18-27 (11-13 A-10), but with a team poised to make a jump, it will be imperative for Morris and Hart to lead this team.

Along with Hart and Morris entering their senior season, the 2017 season will be UMass coach Mike Stone’s last with the program. The long-time coach announced his impending retirement after the 2016 season.

Tyler Fiedler can be reached at tfiedler@umass.edu, and followed on Twitter @Tyler_Fiedler.

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