WSU Notebook

WSU PITCHER J.D. Leckenby, one of four Cougars taken in the major league baseball draft last week, told the Times-News of Twin Falls, Idaho, that he and teammate Jason Monda are giving strong consideration to staying at WSU for their senior seasons.

"Finishing school and getting my degree is a top priority," Leckenby said. "I have some decisions I need to make.

"But at (WSU) we have a great team bond, and my roommate (Monda) and I are really thinking about coming back. We have to a chance to be a regional team (in the NCAA tournament) next year."

Leckenby, a native of Buhl, Idaho, was drafted by the New York Mets in the 14th round. Monda went to Philadelphia in the sixth, Adam Nelubowich to Houston in the 18th and Trace Tam Sing to Kansas City in the 26th.

Meanwhile, Asheville (N.C.) Tourists right fielder Derek Jones, WSU's career leader in home runs, has been selected to play in the South Atlantic League All-Star Game on June 18 in Lakewood, N.J.

Jones is batting .263 with seven home runs, 15 doubles and 29 RBIs in 52 games with the Colorado Rockies' Class A farm club.

Fans of the classic baseball movie "Bull Durham" may recall that Crash Davis, Kevin Costner's character in the movie, broke the minor league record for career home runs after joining the Tourists following his release from the Durham Bulls.

The Tourists play at McCormick Field, a picturesque ballpark built into the side of a hill in 1924. Some scenes from "Bull Durham" were shot at McCormick.

The right field fence is only 297 feet from home field, an inviting target for a left-handed power hitter like Jones. However, the fence is 36 feet tall, just 14 inches lower than the famed "Green Monster" in left field at Boston's Fenway Park.

One of Jones' former WSU teammates, catcher-outfielder Collin Slaybaugh, has been named a first-team Academic All-American.

Slaybaugh, a movement studies major, carries a perfect 4.0 grade point average. The junior led the Cougars this season with a .317 batting average, 27 runs and 12 stolen bases.

Former Cougar basketball standout Derrick Low earned honorable mention on the Ukraine Superleague all-star team recently.

Low averaged 15.3 points for Dnipro and finished second in the league with 6.9 assists. Normally a deadly shooter from 3-point range, Low hit just 30.7 percent of his shots from beyond the arc.

WSU senior Katie Dick became the first Cougar crew team member to win Academic All-America honors when she was named to the second team.

Dick, who graduated with a 3.98 GPA and a degree in philosophy, helped the Cougars finish 14th at the NCAA Championships.

Cougar BUCK/DE Logan Mayes' court date in his hit-and-run case has been rescheduled for July 11.

The WSU football player was involved in what Pullman police described as a minor accident last month. Police said Mayes has admitted his involvement.

Mark Hendrickson continues to meet with mixed results in his bid to return to major league baseball after sitting out last season.

The former WSU and NBA basketball player, who played only one season of college baseball, is 0-1 with a 4.11 earned run average in 16 games with the Class AAA Norfolk (Va.) Tides. The Tides are the top farm club of the Baltimore Orioles.

Hendrickson, pitching as a middle reliever and set-up man, has yielded only 21 hits and seven walks in 30 2-3 innings while holding opposing hitters to a .193 batting average. He's struck out 24, but he's given up five home runs.

The 6-foot-9 left-hander, one of only 12 men who have played in the NBA as well as baseball's major leagues (Cougar Gene Conley is another), turns 39 on June 23.

Former Cougar baseballer Jesse Hoorelbeke, who ranks among the all-time home run leaders in the independent leagues, might have a future as a comedian.

Now retired from baseball and working as a photographer in Fargo, N.D., Hoorelbeke recently tweeted, "The wind is blowing so hard here, I just watched a chicken lay the same egg three times."

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