NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Philadelphia University baseball team tied a school record with four players earning a place on the All-Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference Baseball Team on Monday, highlighted by first baseman Steven Wells (Yardley, Pa./The Hun School) being selected as the 2017 CACC Player of the Year.
Wells—one of three Rams named to the All-CACC first team—is the second straight Philadelphia University player to take home the Player of the Year award and the third in program history. Fernando Garza was the conference player of the year in 2015 and Tyler Mentzer was given the honor in 2010.
An All-CACC first team player for the second consecutive year, Wells is ranked in the top-five in nine offensive categories. He is the CACC leader in total bases (113) and slugging percentage (.729), second in home runs (14), third in on-base percentage (.471) and runs scored (44), fourth in walks (30), and fifth in batting average (.355), doubles (12), and runs batted in (37).
The CACC Player of the Week on April 17, Wells has 55 base hits to sit seventh in the CACC.
In the preseason, Wells was named as a Collegiate Baseball Newspaper Preseason Second Team All-American and a National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Preseason All-East Region second team selection.
Joining Wells on the All-CACC first team by utility player David McTaggart (Wilmington, Del./St. Elizabeth) and starting pitcher Abraham Almonte (Danbury, Conn./Danbury). Left fielder Brandon Quaranta (Poughkeepsie, N.Y./Arlington) was named to the All-CACC second team.
It is the first time in program history that the Rams have had three All-CACC first team players. The Rams had four all-conference selections was 2007 when they had four second-team honorees.
McTaggart—who has spent time at shortstop, third base, and second baseman this season—is having a career season in 2017. The senior has career highs in batting average (.304), runs scored (32), doubles (9), triples (4), home runs (5), total bases (80), slugging percentage (.506), RBI (34), and stolen bases (9).
Almonte is one of the league's top pitchers as he leads the CACC in strikeouts (66) and strikeouts per game (11.28) and is ranked fifth in earned run average (ERA) (2.05). He has three wins this season and opponents are hitting just .192 off of him. In CACC play, Almonte has a 1.55 ERA.
A Collegiate Baseball Newspaper preseason player to watch, Quaranta is first in the CACC with a career-high 15 home runs. He is second in runs scored (45) and slugging percentage (.651), third in total bases (97) and walks (32), fourth in RBI (40), and ninth in on-base percentage (.432). Quaranta has a .289 batting average.
Philadelphia (19-27) reached the double-elimination portion of the CACC Tournament for the second straight season. The Rams open play against Chestnut Hill on Thursday, May 11 at 3 p.m. at Municipal Stadium in Waterbury, Conn.