LA JOLLA, Calif. - The new coaching staff of the nationally-ranked UC San Diego baseball team has assembled an inaugural recruiting class of six that will join the Triton family in the fall of 2012. The announcement was made Tuesday by head coach Eric Newman.
The class consists of a right-handed pitcher, three infielders, an outfielder and a combination first baseman/outfielder. All six are currently high school seniors.
Dallas Bacon is a five-foot-11, 180 pound infielder playing for Hart High School in Newhall under head coach Jim Ozella.
- Hit .396 with a .595 slugging percentage and a .446 on-base percentage as a junior
- Recorded 11 doubles and three home runs in 2011
- Selected to play in the 2011 Jesse Flores Memorial All-Star Game
- A Valley Invitational Baseball League All-Star in 2010 and 2011
- Played in the Southwest Future All-Star Game
- MVP of the South squad at the CBCA North-South Series
- Also played with the So Cal Cardinals Scout Team and the Colton Nighthawks
Troy Cruz is a five-foot-eight, 150 pound infielder that plays for Vince Gervais at Bonita Vista High School in Chula Vista.
- Picked up All-Mesa League honors and was named BVHS' defensive MVP as a junior
- Hit .300 while playing shortstop as a junior
- Was also the Barons' No. 1 starting pitcher as a junior, going 5-5 with a 2.50 ERA and 74 strikeouts in 64 innings
- Threw a one-hit complete game vs. Chula Vista, struck out 14 vs. Longmont (Utah) and tossed a complete game two-hitter against No. 1 La Costa Canyon
- As a sophomore, batted .350 and went 3-0 on the mound
- Was 2-0 and started a CIF semifinal game vs. Grossmont as a freshman
- Played for the San Diego 2012s travel team that won the prestigious Sophomore Classic in Arizona
- Batted .500 and threw a complete game no-hitter in the first playoff game in Arizona
Justin Donatella is a six-foot-six, 190 pound right-handed pitcher out of Santa Clarita's Saugus High School. He is currently coached by John Maggiora.
- Named captain of the 2012 team
- Won Saugus' Kevin English Most Improved Player Award in 2011
- Also earned a Scholar-Athlete Award as a junior
- Went 3-5 with a 3.74 ERA as a junior in 2011
- Struck out 32 and walked just 13 over 48.2 innings pitched in 2011
Austin Hensley is a six-foot-one, 200 pound first baseman/outfielder from Valhalla High School in El Cajon, where Mike Wilson serves as the head coach.
- Named captain of the 2012 squad
- VHS' Offensive Player of the Year in 2010 and 2011
- Tabbed First Team All-Grossmont League South in 2009 and Second Team in 2010
- In 2011, a Second Team All-Grossmont League Hills selection
- Hit .435 with three home runs and 22 RBI as a freshman
- As a sophomore, batted .365 with four homers and 27 RBI
- In 2011, hit .370 with seven home runs and 28 RBI
- Also played with the Seattle Mariners Scout Team and the San Diego Gamers travel team
Andrew Hobson is a five-foot-nine, 180 pound infielder playing for coach Shawn McHugh at Dublin High School in Dublin, located in the San Francisco Bay area.
- A first team all-league pick and gold glove winner in 2011
- Also tabbed First Team All-Diablo Foothill Athletic League in 2010
- Named the Gaels' MVP in 2011
- As a junior, hit .348, slugged .457 and held a .412 on-base percentage
- Batted .329 with 12 runs scored and nine RBI in 2010
- Also played with the Danville Hoots in 2011 and won the team's MVP award
- A three-time CIF Scholar-Athlete
Gradeigh Sanchez is a five-foot-seven, 145 pound outfielder playing for Bob Zamora at Capistrano Valley High School in Mission Viejo.
- A First Team All-South Coast League selection
- Leads the Cougars in triples, bunts and sacrifice hits
- Tabbed the MaxPreps Player of the Week on Mar. 20, 2011
- Recognized as a 2011 Scholar-Athlete
- Also played for the Chicago White Sox scout team
"We are extremely excited about this group of young men and the talent they will bring to UCSD on the field, in the classroom and in the community," said Newman, who's entering his first season at the helm of the Triton program. "Coach Sergio Brown and Coach Rob Avila have worked very hard to bring in a group of players that we feel will continue to grow the strong tradition of Triton baseball."
UC San Diego finished its 2011 campaign with a 42-15 record and won its third straight California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) regular season and tournament titles. The Tritons, ranked No. 1 in the country for part of the season, advanced to their fifth consecutive NCAA postseason.
- UCSDtritons.com -