Central Islip, N.Y. – Angelo Navetta (Staten Island, N.Y.) of Molloy College, Matt Kostalos (Staten Island, N.Y.) of St. Thomas Aquinas College, and Chris Cepeda (Port Jefferson Station, N.Y.) of Dowling College have been selected as East Coast Conference Baseball All-Conference major award winners in a vote by the league's coaches. Navetta has been named the Player of the Year, Kostalos earns the Pitcher of the Year honor, and Cepeda is the Rookie of the Year. Dowling head coach, Tom Caputo, and St. Thomas Aquinas head coach, Scott Muscat wrap up the major awards by sharing the Coach of the Year award.
Navetta, a sophomore first baseman, earns the Player of the Year honor after leading the ECC in hitting during the regular season. He has compiled a .385 batting average on an ECC-high 70 hits. Navetta is among the conference's leaders in numerous other offensive categories, as well. He also tops the league with 93 total bases and ranks in the top-10 with 39 runs scored, 10 doubles, three homeruns, 31 runs batted in, eight hit-by-pitches, a .447 on-base percentage, and a .511 slugging percentage. In addition, Navetta has also been outstanding with the leather at first base. He has handled all 481 chances on the year without an error for a 1.000 fielding percentage.
Kostalos wraps up his outstanding career at St. Thomas Aquinas as the Pitcher of the Year after a dominant 2016 season on the mound. In 12 appearances and 11 starts, Kostalos has compiled a perfect 7-0 record with a 1.43 earned run average while only allowing opponents to hit .199 against him. His win total is tied for the most in the ECC and his ERA is second in the loop. Kostalos is also the conference leader with 92 strikeouts and 81.2 innings pitched. His name can also be found among the Division II leaders, as well. He currently ranks in the top 20 in the nation with 6.39 hits allowed per nine innings and a 0.97 WHIP (walks and hits per inning pitched).
Cepeda has been named the conference's top newcomer after posting a 6-0 record on the hill for the Golden Lions. Cepeda, who started the season in the bullpen before working his way into Dowling's rotation, has a 2.83 ERA to go along with 40 strikeouts in 60.1 innings pitched on the year. The one-time ECC Rookie of the Week also added one save to his totals.
Caputo earns a share of the Coach of the Year award after leading the Golden Lions to the No. 2 seed in the upcoming ECC Championship tournament with a 14-10 conference record. Under Caputo's guidance, the Golden Lions also turned around their season after a rough start. Dowling finished the regular season with a 21-11 record over their final 32 games after beginning the season 3-11.
Muscat is the other half of the Coach of the Year duo after leading St. Thomas Aquinas to a 35-13 overall record and the program's first ECC Regular Season Championship since the 2013 season. Muscat has also guided the Spartans to a No. 22 national ranking in the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) Division II Top 25 poll and the No. 3 spot in the NCAA East Region poll.
Joining Navetta and Kostalos as All-Conference First Team selections are Michael Rizzitello (Sr., C, Dowling); Brandon Fischer (Sr., 2B, St. Thomas Aquinas), Casey McCone (Jr., 3B, Bridgeport), Kevin Kolesar (Jr., SS, Queens), Rob Andreoli (So., OF, LIU Post), RJ Going (Sr, OF, Dowling), Ben Torres (So., OF, Bridgeport), Alnaydo Rodriguez (Sr., DH, Bridgeport), Greg Dawber (Jr., UTL, St. Thomas Aquinas), Rob Anderson (Sr., SP, Bridgeport), Ronald Bauer (Jr., SP, Molloy), Cody McPartland (Jr., SP, Dowling), and George Navadel (Jr., RP, St. Thomas Aquinas).
Second Team honorees include Thomas Asbaty (Jr., C, LIU Post), David Groeneveld (Sr., 1B, LIU Post), Jose Negron (So., 2B, Bridgeport), Kevin Podell (Jr., 3B, Molloy), Joseph Pena (So., SS, St. Thomas Aquinas), Anthony Alberghina (Jr., OF, Molloy), Giovanni Dingcong (So., OF, St. Thomas Aquinas), Anthony Galanoudis (Jr., OF, Molloy), Deilyn Guzman (Sr., DH, Molloy), Joe Morris (Jr., UTL, Queens), Joseph Broderick (Jr., SP, Queens), Jake DeCarli (Jr., SP, LIU Post), Dan Jagiello (Jr, SP, LIU Post), and Matt Snyder (Gr., SP, Mercy).
Molloy and St. Thomas Aquinas tied for the most selections with six each. Bridgeport was next with five.
2016 ECC Baseball All-Conference
C - Michael Rizzitello, Dowling
1B - Angelo Navetta, Molloy
2B - Brandon Fischer, St. Thomas Aquinas
3B - Casey McCone, Bridgeport
SS - Kevin Kolesar, Queens
OF - Rob Andreoli, LIU Post
OF - RJ Going, Dowling
OF - Ben Torres, Bridgeport
DH - Alnaydo Rodriguez, Bridgeport
UTL - Greg Dawber, St Thomas Aquinas
SP - Rob Anderson, Bridgeport
SP - Ronald Bauer, Molloy
SP - Matt Kostalos, St. Thomas Aquinas
SP - Cody McPartland, Dowling
RP - George Navadel, St. Thomas Aquinas
C - Thomas Asbaty, LIU Post
1B - David Groeneveld, LIU Post
2B - Jose Negron, Bridgeport
3B - Kevin Podell, Molloy
SS - Joseph Pena, St. Thomas Aquinas
OF - Anthony Alberghina, Molloy
OF - Giovanni Dingcong, St. Thomas Aquinas
OF - Anthony Galanoudis, Molloy
DH - Deilyn Guzman, Molloy
UTL - Joe Morris, Queens
SP - Joseph Broderick, Queens
SP - Jake DeCarli, LIU Post
SP - Dan Jagiello, LIU Post
SP - Matt Snyder, Mercy
Player of the Year: Angelo Navetta, So., 1B, Molloy
Pitcher of the Year: Matt Kostalos, Sr., St. Thomas Aquinas
Rookie of the Year: Chris Cepeda, Fr., SP, Dowling
Co-Coach of the Year: Tom Caputo, Dowling
Co-Coach of the Year: Scott Muscat, St. Thomas Aquinas