It was a memorable season in more ways than one for Chapman graduate Tyler Peck and he has one more piece of hardware to remember it by. The American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) announced that Peck has been selected as the NCAA Division III Pitcher of the Year.
Peck, who was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals earlier in the month, becomes just the second Panther to earn a top national honor in the program's storied history. He joins Kurt Yacko '11, who was the Co-Player of the Year in 2007 to earn the national distinction.
Previously, Peck has collected All-SCIAC First Team honors, ABCA West Region Pitcher of the Year honors (from D3baseball.com and the ABCA) and All-America First Team honors (again, from both organizations). He also helped Chapman to win its third national championship in program history, joining the teams from 1968 and 2003 in the elite club.
The Corte Madera, Calif., made 18 starts and struck out 156 batters to lead the all of Division III in both categories. He went 8-4 with a 2.22 ERA in his senior season, accumulating 113.2 innings pitched. Opponents hit just .219 against him.
His 156 strikeouts set a Chapman record for strikeouts in a season and led the Panthers to set the Division III record for team strikeouts in a season with 524.
After a dominant regular season, the Panthers went to Peck to start the clinching games of the SCIAC Tournament, the Regional and the Super Regional. He went 1-0 in the three crucial starts with a 1.00 ERA and 25 strikeouts over 18 innings. He went on to pick up the win in the first game of the Championship Series, holding Birmingham Southern to three runs on six hits through seven innings.
After March 15, Peck made a run of 10 consecutive quality starts and finished the season with 13 quality starts. He had eight games with double digit strikeouts, including a career-best 16-strikeout performance over nine dominant innings against George Fox.
Peck is just the second pitcher to earn ABCA Pitcher of the Year honors at the Division III level after the organization began handing out the award in 2018. After signing with the Cardinals, he was assigned to the Rookie advanced affiliate in Johnson City, Tenn. He has not yet made his professional debut.
One more award came through with for the Chapman baseball team after the conclusion of the Division I season. The ABCA recently announced head coach Scott Laverty as the NCAA Division III National Coach of the Year.
Laverty led the Panthers to the program's third national title in 2019. On the way to the national championship, the Panthers set the school record for wins in a season and set the NCAA Division III record for strikeouts in a season.
Chapman went 44-12 on the year, going 30-9 through the regular season and claiming the school's first SCIAC regular season title. The Panthers hosted the SCIAC Tournament for the first time ever, hosted an NCAA Regional for the first time since 2007 and hosted one of the first Super Regionals in the NCAA Tournament.
Chapman swept through its conference tournament, beat Whitman in a best-of-five regional, swept Concordia (TX) in the best-of-three Super Regional, emerged from the loser's bracket at the NCAA Division III World Series and finally swept Birmingham Southern in the Championship Series.
Laverty is the second coach in Chapman's history to earn the ABCA's top coaching award, joining Tom Tereschuk from 2003. He garnered Chapman's 10th ABCA West Region Coach of the Year honor.
In his 20th season as a head coach, and sixth at Chapman, Laverty claimed his first coaching award with the SCIAC Coaching Staff of the Year honor at the end of the regular season. His owns a career record of 482-345-1 with a record of 184-84 at Chapman.
-- Courtesy of Chapman Sports Information --