Navy announces baseball newcomers

This year's Navy incoming class is comprised of nine pitchers, five infielders, four outfielders and two catchers. The Navy baseball Class of 2010 comes to Annapolis with a long list of accolades, including one collegiate Freshman All-American, one high school All-American, two high school preseason All-Americans, one state player of the year, five all-state players and four team MVPs.

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - After winning 32 games in his first season at the helm of the Navy baseball program last season, head coach Paul Kostacopoulos and the coaching staff has announced its 20 newcomers for the 2007 campaign. This year's incoming class is comprised of nine pitchers, five infielders, four outfielders and two catchers. The Navy baseball Class of 2010 comes to Annapolis with a long list of accolades, including one collegiate Freshman All-American, one high school All-American, two high school preseason All-Americans, one state player of the year, five all-state players, four team MVPs and seven team captains.

"We are pleased to have 20 accomplished student-athletes joining us at the U.S. Naval Academy this season," stated Kostacopoulos. "Certainly with their credentials, we hope that this will be a very strong group of players. The excitement and enthusiasm of having our first recruiting class is something that we look forward to as we head towards fall workouts."

Ridge Alkonis - LHP - BL/TL - 6'1" - 179 - Claremont, Calif./Claremont

Notes: Served as team captain his senior year ... Academic All-Baseline League selection as a senior ... named to Bob Skapik Memorial All-Tournament Team during his senior season ... team posted a 23-7 record in 2005 and followed with a 19-8 mark during his senior season in 2006 ... in both years, Claremont went to the California Interscholastic Federation semifinals.

Stats: Posted a 2-3 record with a 3.75 ERA in 28.0 innings on the hill last season ... fanned 17 batters and hurled a shutout as a senior.

Jonathan Berkowitz - INF - BR/TL - 5'11" - 190 - Parkland, Fla./North Broward Prep

Notes: Two-time PUMA Preseason All-American selection ... named third-team all-state ... earned first-team all-county twice during his high school career ... served as team captain ... named team's MVP three times ... a four-year varsity starter at North Broward Prep ... helped his team to a 15-12 record and a runner-up finish in District 13 play as a senior.

Stats: Registered a .363 career batting average with 21 home runs and 86 RBIs, including a .503 on-base percentage ... he batted .391 with seven round-trippers, 15 RBIs and 17 walks during his senior campaign ... as a sophomore, he posted a .400 batting average and led Broward County with 12 home runs and 40 RBIs.

Kendall Bolt - INF - BR/TR - 5'11" - 175 - Stockton, Calif./Lincoln Notes: Named to 2006 PUMA High School All-American Team ... selected All-San Joaquin AA in his junior season ... earned two varsity letters in baseball and three in soccer ... helped Lincoln to a San Joaquin AA Championship in his senior year as the team recorded a 20-8 mark ... a four-year member of the nationally ranked Nor Cal Baseball Team (U15-U18) ... his older brother, Karl, is a rising senior baseball captain at the United States Air Force Academy.

Stats: Batted .475 during his senior season with six doubles, a triple and eight RBIs ... as a junior, he hit at a .305 clip with six doubles, three triples, two home runs and 26 RBIs ... in that season, he also walked 21 times and was hit by a pitch 17 times for a .509 on-base percentage.

Todd Carlson - RHP - BR/TR - 6'2" - 190 - Boca Raton, Fla./Olympic Heights

Notes: Lettered in baseball at Olympic Heights High School ... member of the Florida State Champion Treasure Coast Knights at the 2004 IBC Super Series ... two-year competitor with the South Florida Bombers in the Mickey Mantle League ... that team earned a share of the state title in 2002.

Stats: Posted a 3.75 ERA in 28.0 innings of work during nine appearances in his senior season ... nearly struck out a batter per inning, as he fanned 27 batters on the season ... led the team in ERA, innings pitched, appearances and strikeouts as a senior.

Matthew Curley - INF - BR/TR - 5'10" - 170 - Boston, Mass./Boston College

Notes: Selected All-Catholic Conference at Boston College High School ... served as team captain and was named a Scholar-Athlete Award winner ... helped his team to a South Section Championship and finished only one game away from the state championship ... team posted an 18-8 record during senior season ... as a junior, the Eagles went 14-7 ... despite playing middle infield, he led the team in fielding percentage.

Oliver Drake - RHP - BR/TR - 6'3" - 195 - Gardner, Mass./Northfield Mount Hermon

Notes: First-Team All-Central New England Prep School League selection as a junior and senior ... named team captain during his junior and senior seasons ... winner of the Thompson Blanket Award, Ralph E. Jillson Award and Nettie M. Johnson Memorial Award as a senior. Stats: Recorded a 3.34 ERA in 44.0 innings of work during his senior year on the mound ... averaged more than a strikeout per inning as he struck out 55 hitters ... as a junior, he went 4-4 with a 3.59 ERA in 37.0 innings ... fanned 46 batters while allowing 38 hits ... at the plate, he batted .373 as a junior with three doubles, four triples, two home runs and 12 RBIs ... during his senior campaign, he hit at a .322 clip, including four doubles, two triples, 12 RBIs and five stolen bases.

Yale Eckert - LHP - BL/TL - 6'7" - 215 - La Selva Beach, Calif./Aptos

Notes: All-Santa Cruz Coast League selection as a senior at Aptos High School and a junior at Monte Vista Christian High School ... helped Aptos to a 17-10 record in 2006 ... named to the all-tournament team at the Super Series National Championships in 2005 ... played for the United States in the Goodwill Series in China (2005) and Australia (2004).

Stats: Struck out 73 batters while issuing only 12 walks in 56.0 innings on the hill at Aptos ... as a junior at Monte Vista Christian, he fanned 37 and walked only 10 in 42.0 innings ... as a hitter, he batted .387 at Monte Vista Christian with seven doubles ... one year later, he recorded a .342 average with three doubles and a home run.

Tim Garza - OF/C - BR/TR - 6'0" - 185 - Parkland, Fla./Westminster Academy

Notes: All-Florida State selection during his senior season at Westminster Academy ... four-year varsity baseball letterwinner ... named to all-district and all-county in his junior and senior years ... served as baseball team captain ... recipient of the Jack Moundy Athletic Award in 2005 ... helped his baseball team to four-consecutive 2A District and state regional championships from 2002-05 ... during that time, his team posted a combined record of 116-13 (.899).

Stats: Hit at a .379 clip during his junior campaign. Michael Hoosier - OF - BL/TR - 5'10" - 200 - Pomona, N.Y./Don Bosco Prep (N.J.)

Notes: Lettered in baseball at Don Bosco Prep in New Jersey ... helped his squad to a 27-6 record during his senior season ... as a senior, his team won the Bergen County Championship.

Stats: Posted a .388 batting average and a .746 slugging percentage during his senior campaign ... belted 14 doubles, six triples and four home runs while driving in 25 runs.

Drew Lydon - INF - BR/TR - 5'10" - 172 - White Plains, Md./Riverdale Baptist

Notes: 2006 PUMA Preseason All-American infielder ... an All-Prince Georges County selection during his junior and senior years ... honorable mention All-Met shortstop as a senior ... helped his team win over 30 games for the 12th-consecutive season ... played at same high school as current Navy baseball rising junior Bill Maugeri.

Stats: Registered a .508 batting average with 67 hits and 63 runs scored during his senior campaign ... belted 18 doubles, three triples and six home runs while driving in 37 runs, stealing 47 bases and walking 28 times ... as a junior, he batted .350 with seven doubles, three triples and six home runs ... he swiped 21 bases and posted a .979 fielding percentage.

J.D. Melton - RHP - BR/TR - 6'0" - 180 - Myrtle Beach, S.C./Myrtle Beach/Wofford

College Notes: Named a 2006 Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American relief pitcher at Wofford College ... came out of the bullpen in 29 games to post a 7-4 record with seven saves and a 4.74 ERA ... the freshman had a hand in 14 of Wofford's 20 victories in 2006 ... his seven saves established a freshman record at Wofford ... in 49.1 innings of work, he held the opposition to less than a hit per inning with 34 strikeouts ... his seven saves ranked ninth in the Southern Conference and 23 games finished tied him for fifth in the league ... hurled five innings of one-hit, shutout baseball against South Carolina, ranked 10th in the country at the time, and struck out four as Wofford won, 9-8, in 13 innings ... the win marked Wofford's first over the Gamecocks since 1947 ... in that appearance, he retired the last-11 batters he faced after entering the game tied at eight in the ninth inning ... in addition to pitching, he also served as a reserve infielder, batting .197 with three! doubles, one home run and four runs batted in ... belted a walk-off home run in the back-end of a doubleheader against Albany to pick up his first collegiate win on Feb. 25 ... the home run marked his first collegiate hit.

High School Notes: Named AAA All-State in baseball and played in the South Carolina Baseball Coaches Association All-Star Game ... a five-year varsity starter at Myrtle Beach High School, he was selected Region VII AAA Player of the Year and earned First-Team Toast of the Coast honors ... played for Conway American Legion Post 111 team that advanced to the state championship series in 2004 ... in addition to baseball, he was an All-American quarterback for Myrtle Beach ... named Mr. Football in South Carolina during his senior season, as he threw well over 3,000 yards and 34 touchdowns ... tied state record with eight touchdown passes in a game and ranks second in state history with his 222 pass completions in 2004.

High School Stats: Posted a 6-4 record and a 3.50 ERA with 54 strikeouts during his senior year ... batted .389 in his junior year and followed up with a .357 batting average in 2005.

Kyle Millerd - RHP - BR/TR - 6'5" - 205 - La Quinta, Calif./La Quinta Notes: Lettered in baseball at La Quinta High School ... helped his team advance to the quarterfinals of the California Interscholastic Federation playoffs, the furthest the team had advanced in school history ... pitched and recorded the win in the second round of the playoff run ... the Blackhawks went 18-9 in his senior season and posted a 19-9 mark in 2005.

Stats: Went 6-3 with a 2.40 ERA in 46.2 innings on the hill during his senior season ... as a junior, he boasted a 1.82 ERA in 54.0 innings while registering a 4-2 record.

Jeffrey Murdza - LHP - BL/TL - 6'1" - 180 - Hamilton, N.J./Lawrenceville Prep

Notes: Named All-New Jersey Prep School Player of the Year ... selected Player of the Year by the Newark Star Ledger ... first-team all-state prep school pitcher ... earned All-Mercer County Player of the Year accolades ... also a first-team all-league selection at first base ... served as team captain during his junior and senior seasons ... two-time recipient of the Jackson Weeks Osborne Award ... with his help, the team went 17-6 during his senior season and won the New Jersey "Prep A" State Championship.

Stats: Recorded a 3.03 career ERA over 143.0 innings on the mound, as he struck out 155 and posted a 15-8 record ... during his senior season, he held the opposition to a .163 batting average while going 8-1 with a 2.41 ERA and 69 strikeouts in 61.0 innings ... as a hitter, he batted .427 during his career with 17 doubles, two triples, eight home runs and 71 RBIs ... he belted five doubles, two triples, five home runs and drove in 25 runs while hitting .493 in 2006.

Chris Murray - LHP - BL/TL - 5'10" - 180 - Navarre, Fla./Navarre/South Alabama

College Notes: Redshirted his freshman season with South Alabama in 2006.

High School Notes: A second-team all-area selection during his senior season at Navarre High School ... earned three letters in both baseball and football ... earned the team's Best Pitcher Award in his junior and senior years ... recipient of the FCA Challengers Award ... served as team captain of the football as a senior. High School

Stats: Boasted a 1.03 ERA during his senior year on the mound.

Stuart Slavin - OF - BR/TR - 6'1" - 170 - Duluth, Ga./Northview

Notes: Four-year baseball letterwinner at Northview High School ... started in all four seasons and was one of only two four-year varsity letterwinners ... served as team captain during his senior year ... attended the Perfect Game Southeast and Academic Showcases in 2005 ... also competed with Team One South at Georgia Tech in 2005.

Steven Soares - C - BR/TR - 5'11" - 200 - Miami, Fla./Taravella

Notes: A five-time All-Broward County selection ... named the team's Most Valuable Player in his senior year ... earned Best Defensive Player Award during his junior season at Taravella ... helped his squad to a 22-9 mark during his senior campaign.

Stats: Posted a .450 batting average during his senior season, including nine home runs.

Matt Sweisthal - OF - BL/TL - 5'7" - 162 - Spring, Texas/Klein Oak

Notes: An 18-4A All-District selection during his senior year at Klein Oak High School ... three-year baseball letterwinner and earned one letter in football ... helped his team advance to the bi-district playoffs as a senior ... competed with 2005 Connie Mack South Zone State Champions and advanced to the Regional Final Four ... went 4-for-9 with six walks and five steals during the regional to help his team a fourth-place finish ... led his Perfect Game teams in on-base percentage and stolen bases in 2004-05 ... participated with third-place squad at the Elite Amateur National Finals in 2004 ... earned MVP Outfielder Award at the University of Houston Tournament in 2004.

Stats: Led Klein Oak with a .481 on-base percentage and 18 stolen bases during his senior year.

Michael Thomas - RHP - BR/TR - 6'2" - 190 - Kernersville, N.C./Bishop McGuinness

Notes: Second-Team All-North Carolina 1A member ... named to All-Piedmont Conference Team in his junior and senior seasons ... finished second in the conference player of the year voting ... selected as his team's MVP during his senior season ... played for American Legion Post 36 team in his junior and senior years.

Stats: Registered a 7-4 mark with a 1.72 ERA in 10 starts at Bishop McGuinness in 2006 ... in 61.0 innings of work, he struck out 120 batters for an average of 1.97 strikeouts per inning ... hurled five complete games and held the opposition to a .184 batting average ... in his junior year, he went 4-2 with a 4.36 ERA in seven starts ... he fanned 46 hitters in 25.2 innings for an average of 1.79 strikeouts per inning ... as a hitter, he batted .355 as a senior with five doubles, two triples, one home run and was a perfect 17-for-17 in stolen base attempts ... he hit at a .388 clip his junior campaign with five doubles, four triples, one home run and 24 RBIs.

Jacob Walls - C - BR/TR - 6'3" - 175 - Austin, Texas/Stephen F. Austin

Notes: Earned All-District 16-5A honors at catcher in his sophomore, junior and senior seasons at Stephen F. Austin High School ... helped his team make the post-season in each of those seasons ... competed on a squad went 24-12 during his junior campaign and won the district and area championships ... followed with a 21-11-1 record in 2006 to finish second in the district ... played for the Austin Baseball Club that advanced to the semifinals of the WWBA 17-under National Championship in 2005

Stats: Has started every game since the second game of his sophomore year ... recorded a .271 career batting average and .384 on-base percentage ... as a sophomore, he hit at a .379 clip ... he batted .267 and reached base safely .410 during his senior campaign.

Jacob Ware - INF - BR/TR - 5'11" - 160 - Statesboro, Ga./Statesboro

Notes: Played for the Southeast Georgia squad in the Georgia State All-Star game following his senior season ... nominated for the Georgia Underclassmen Top-80 Showcase in his junior year ... played on the Nike D-1 Tour in the summer and fall following his junior season ... named team MVP during his senior year ... his team went 20-13 during his junior year and won the Region 2-AAAA Championship, advancing to the AAAA Sweet Sixteen that season ... his father, Mitch, coaches receivers and quarterbacks for Navy's football team from 1998-01 and coached at Georgia Southern from 2002-06 ... played Little League Baseball in Annapolis and served as a ball-boy for the Navy football team from 1998-01.

Stats: Posted a school-record .530 batting average with three home runs and 45 RBIs during his senior year ... as a junior, he batted .453 while belting four round-trippers and driving in 36 runs. Top Stories