Warwick, R.I. – May 8, 2015: The 2015 NJCAA Region XXI All-Region team was announced this week and six Knights made First Team All-Region and they had one honorable mention. The Knights baseball team had five sophomores and one freshman named All-Region. The players selected for the Knights were Co-Captains Eddie Apice (CF)and TJ Boyajian (RF), Dave Hopkins (SS), Ryan Rotondo (2B), Austin Barry (3B) and James Riley-Garnett (DH), while Dan Autiello (C) was named All-Region honorable mention for the Knights.
Head Coach Ken Hopkins had this to say about his 2015 All-Region players, “Great leadership from the Captains, Apice and Boyajian. They were a tremendous group of players to coach and gave their best effort but fell just a bit short to a very good UCAP team.”
Co-Captains Eddie Apice (North Kingstown, RI)and TJ Boyajian (Warwick, RI) were both selected as outfielders to the team after outstanding years. Apice finished the season with a .405 average, 34 hits and 18 RBI’s. The centerfielder for the Knights also led the team with nine steals and 34 runs scored. Apice not only played the field everyday but also would pitch for the Knights. He pitched 21 innings on the season while striking out 24 and allowing less than a hit per inning. Boyajian had an excellent season himself, finishing the year with a .411 average, eight stolen bases, 11 RBI’s, nine doubles and 27 runs scored. Boyajian was continually getting the Knights offense going from the top of the lineup while also playing superb defense that would constantly spark the team and get them rolling. Coach Hopkins had this to say about his Co-Captains, “Apice was so much of a threat that many teams decided to pitch around him and let him walk rather than let him beat them. His versatility and offensive power will be difficult to replace. TJ Boyajian is one of my favorite players of all time, his leadership skills and contributions to the program are some of the greatest that I have witnessed at CCRI.”
The Knights two starting middle infielders both also earned All-Region honors in 2015. Dave Hopkins (East Greenwich, RI) and Ryan Rotondo (Warwick, RI) played excellent baseball offensively and defensively all year from the second base and shortstop positions. Hopkins, the shortstop, finished the season off with a .355 average, 25 runs, 21 RBI’s, and four steals while leading the team with 64 assists defensively 11 double plays turned on defense. Hopkins also showed he can pitch too by throwing a seven inning one-hit shutout against Region XXI opponent Holyoke CC. Rotondo, the second baseman, was the only Knights freshman to earn All-Region honors and he certainly deserved it. The Warwick native led the Knights with a .421 average and ended the season tied for the team lead with 25 RBI’s. Rotondo also added eight doubles, two triples and 27 runs scored on the year. Coach Hopkins added “Dave Hopkins was one of our most versatile players and did a tremendous job of solidifying the shortstop position. Ryan Rotondo was our most consistent hitter all season and will be counted upon very heavily to lead the team next season.”
Austin Barry (North Kingstown, RI) and James Riley-Garnett (Newport, RI) were two of the most versatile defensive players on the Knights team this season but their bats were what led them to the All-Region honors. Barry ended the year with a sound .419 average while leading the Knights with 44 hits. He also led the team with 12 extra base hits, and was co-leader for RBI’s with 25. Barry also swiped five bases on the year and scored 20 runs. Riley-Garnett, who was probably the teams most improved player from last year, finished the season with a .391 average, five steals, 13 runs scored, 27 hits and 21 RBI’s. Riley-Garnett was named to All-Region as the DH but he was regularly called to play the field and pitch when the team needed him. Coach Hopkins added “James Riley-Garnett was the most improved player on the team. He worked very hard in the off season to make himself a better player. Austin Barry carried the offense most of the season and had an MVP season.”
Dan Autiello (Orlando, FL) was named All-Region honorable mention for the Knights. Autiello led the Knights with two home runs on the year while serving as the team’s primary catcher, the Floridianalso added a .383 average, 15 RBI’s, 14 runs and 10 extra base hits.
TJ Boyajian was also recognized nationally for his defensive performance during the 2015 season. Boyajian was nominated for the National Gold Glove award as an outfielder and the winners will be named in the near future. The Warwick native threw out multiple runners at home on the year while leading the Knights with five outfield assists. Boyajian also finished the year with a perfect fielding percentage by not committing a single error.
Hopkins finished with this to say about his team, “I wish this group of sophomores nothing but the best. They will be greatly remembered but sorely missed.”
The Community College of Rhode Island, New England’s largest comprehensive community college, enrolls nearly 18,000 students in credit courses and thousands more in non-credit and job training classes. Its athletic program boasts 12 varsity programs and an academic support program for all student-athletes.