Porricelli first NCBWA All-American in five years for Merrimack

photo: Merrimack Athletics

Junior Joey Porricelli was named the first National Collegiate Baseball Writers of America All-American in five years for the Merrimack College baseball program, earning an All-American Honorable Mention designation by the NCBWA.

Porricelli’s marvelous junior campaign adds an All-American notch after the third-year Warriors already received Northeast-10 Conference Co-Player of the Year and Division II Conference Commissioners Association (D2CCA), NCBWA and American Baseball Coaches of America/Rawlings All-East Region accolades. The Monroe, Conn. native still awaits potential All-American nods from the D2CCA and ABCA.

The NE10 All-Conference First Team selection is just the third purely athletic All-American for the program this century, joining Casey Cotter ’13 and Frank Crinella ’15. During that time, Joe Mantoni (2013) and senior Matthew Ronai (2018) received Academic All-American honors, as well. The third baseman is the 10th All-American overall in program history.

Porricelli enjoyed a career year that featured Northeast-10 Conference Co-Player of the Year honors after he led Merrimack’s offense from the leadoff spots. The Warriors’ table-setter set career highs in homers (9), triples (5), RBI (41), OPS, (.946), slugging percentage (.551), on-base percentage (.395) and stolen bases (33). Defensively, Porricelli also committed the fewest errors of his career (9), while registering a career-best .950 fielding percentage at third base that marked a 29-point increase from his sophomore season and near 100-point improvement from his rookie campaign. He tied for the team high with 20 multi-hit games – seven of which were of the three-hit variety – and paced the Warriors with 14 multi-RBI contests. He enjoyed a 29-game on-base streak during the season, and reached base in 34 of his last 35 games overall.

In the conference rankings, Porricelli led the league in steals, triples and runs scored (52), and ranked among the top three in homers, total bases (113), extra-base hits and base hits (65). Nationally, the league’s top base stealer ranked in a tie for 10th in total steals and 10th in thefts per game (0.69). The right-handed slugger hit the most homers by a Merrimack player since 2002, posted just the third-ever 30-steal campaign in school history and already sits in fourth in program history in career runs scored (132).

Other honors from the program were also unveiled, with the New England Intercollegiate Baseball Association announcing its postseason honors and award winners on Wednesday. Fifth-year head coach Nick Barese was named NEIBA Division II Coach of the Year while seniors Cam Monagle and Ronai earned NEIBA All-Star selections. The NEIBA All-Star game will be played tomorrow afternoon at 12 p.m. at Dunkin Stadium in Hartford, Conn.

Monagle’s decorated season included a NE10 All-Conference First Team selection, emerging as Merrimack’s staff ace and top starting pitcher. The Cambridge, Mass. native also received All-East Region honors from the D2CCA, NCBWA and ABCA/Rawlings after finishing among the nation’s leaders in ERA, WHIP and wins. Ronai completed a decorated four-year career with his fourth all-league honor in as many tries, landing on the NE10 All-Conference Third Team as an outfielder. The Orange, Conn. native also was spectacular in the classroom, earning his third straight CoSIDA Google Cloud Academic All-District selection.

Barese earned recognition after a 28-win campaign that saw the head man guide Merrimack to its second straight appearance in the NE10 Championship game. Over five years, Barese boasts 128 wins, and moved into second place on Merrimack’s all-time wins list earlier this spring. The 128 triumphs to start his career is the most of any five-year period in Merrimack College history.

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