News release date: May 13, 2003

Whitman's Pearsall Only Freshman to Make All-NWC First Team

WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- Drew Pearsall, a freshman on the Whitman College baseball team, has earned First-Team All-Northwest Conference baseball honors as a utility player.

Pearsall (Phoenix, Ariz. / Brophy College Prep), who hit a team-high .333 in 23 NWC games, was the only freshman to make the 17-man first team. Playing left field, first base and third base, Pearsall collected three doubles, two triples and one home run in conference play, in addition to swiping seven bases in eight attempts.

"Drew is a great competitor and an outstanding team player," Whitman baseball coach Casey Powell said. "He never knew which glove to pull out of the bag when he got to the yard; it was usually different every day. He never complained about getting moved from one position to the next. He was willing to play any position to help the team."

Meanwhile, senior shortstop Blake Fisher (Seattle, Wash. / Blanchet HS) earned a spot on the All-NWC Honorable Mention team for the second time in three seasons. Fisher hit .304 in 24 NWC games with seven doubles and one home run.

"Blake was the core of our team," Powell said. "When things were going well for him, we had a much better chance to win."

On the season, Pearsall hit .311 in 30 games, while Fisher maintained his average at .304 in 32 games. Fisher, who led Whitman in RBI with 23, was a team captain this spring along with senior pitcher Jake Jensen (Portland, Ore. / Central Catholic HS). Fisher also hit .304 as a sophomore and .310 as a freshman.

While pleased that Pearsall and Fisher earned post-season honors, Powell was disappointed that Whitman outfielder Sean Kinney (Kenmore, Wash. / Blanchet HS) was left off the all-conference list. Dividing his time between left and center fields, Kinney hit a team-high .328 on the season, which included a .323 clip in 24 NWC games.

Hitting all season in the lead-off spot, Kinney paced Whitman in runs scored with 23 and doubles with nine. He swiped 10 bases in 14 attempts. Kinney also handled his outfield chores flawlessly, handling 97 chances without committing an error.

"When Sean was on base, which was often, he was always a threat to score or produce a run," Powell said.

Kinney earned all-conference honorable mention recognition last year as a freshman, when he hit .331.

One factor that worked against Kinney this season, in terms of making the all-conference team, was the number of talented juniors and seniors around the league playing in the outfield. Three seniors and a junior earned First-Team recognition as outfielders, while four seniors and a junior received honorable mention recognition.

Jordan Takaki, a Whitman sophomore playing his first season of collegiate ball, hit .311 this spring in 20 NWC games. Takaki (Honolulu, Hawaii / Punahou HS), who plays first base and right field, had 14 hits in 45 plate appeaarances.


Dave Holden, Whitman Sports Information, (509) 527-5902