Maryland Wins a Nail Biter, Beats Towson 4-3

The Terps stay hot as they defeat the Towson Tigers, 4-3, on a cold afternoon in Towson, Maryland.

Junior left fielder Bobby Zmarzlak was the hero the Terps needed after Towson came back to tie the game in the bottom of the ninth. Zmarzlak hit his eighth home run of the season to begin extra innings and take Maryland’s lead back.

“I was just trying to put a ball in play,” Zmarzlak said. “I rolled over a few balls earlier in the game. I just wanted to hit a ball to right field and I’m glad I got it done.”

Unlike the last time these two teams played, it took a long time for the bats to get going for Maryland. After a 26-8 win against the Tigers in late March, not many people could have expected this game to be close.

However, entering the fifth inning the game was still tied, 0-0.

After sophomore second baseman Kevin Keister hit a RBI single to open the door for the Terps, sophomore designated hitter Luke Shliger busted it open. A two-run home run over the right field wall scored Keister and gave the Terps a three run lead.

While it appeared that Maryland may coast to a 3-0 win, Towson never quit.

The Terps made a change to their pitching staff as Logan Ott did not start the game as he normally does on Tuesday. Instead, Head Coach Rob Vaughn elected to start freshman pitcher Andrew Johnson.

After two scoreless innings, Vaughn turned to sophomore pitcher Logan Ott who was making his first appearance out of the bullpen. Ott pitched well for the Terps, lowering his ERA from 6.67 to 5.94.

“You can throw Logan Ott whenever you want. That guy’s going to roll out of bed throwing strikes with three pitches,” Vaughn said.

Towson threatened in the sixth inning after back-to-back base hits with two outs. Freshman pitcher Ryan Van Buren made his 11th appearance of the season and ended the potential Towson rally.

Falco Jr. got a second chance to end the game for the Terps and did not disappoint. Falco earned the win after a 1-2-3 10th inning to send the Terps home with their 30th win of the season.

“We found a way to get it done,” Vaughn said. “I’d love for all 30 of them to be clean and pretty and perfect [but] that’s just not baseball.”

The Terps will travel to Champaign, Illinois to face the Fighting Illini this weekend. First pitch is scheduled for 9:00 p.m. Friday night. Junior Nick Dean is the probable starter for game one, followed by junior Ryan Ramsey and sophomore Jason Savacool.

Midweek Preview: Towson

No. 24 Maryland continued its good conference play this past weekend as the Terps improved to 7-2 in the Big Ten following a sweep of Ohio State. The Terps managed to win two close games to begin the weekend before exploding offensively on Sunday. Maryland scored 16 runs fueled by six doubles and two solo home runs.

The Terps now turn their attention to the Towson Tigers. The first game between the two teams was not pretty for Towson as Maryland won the game, 26-8. Nick Lorusso, Maxwell Costes, Matt Shaw and Troy Shreffler Jr. all homered in the first game against the Tigers.

Towson Tigers (9-26)

Last season:

Towson’s 2021 was better than their 2022 has been so far. A 21-36 record with an 11-12 conference record gave them a second place finish in the Colonial Athletic Association North Division. The team struggled at the plate finishing as the worst team in batting average and slugging percentage in their conference.

The pitching wasn’t any better for Towson as the team finished with a 5.60 ERA last year. The Tigers best relief pitcher Kody Reeser was a graduate student who is no longer on the team. Reeser finished the season with 2.02 ERA and made 25 appearances for the team.

This season:

Towson has struggled to get anything going this season. The Tigers are 0-9 in conference play this season and are currently on a six-game losing streak. Pitching remains the top concern for Towson as the team does not have a starting pitcher with a sub 5.50 ERA.

Hitters to watch:

Jack McLaughlin continues to be the Tigers best all around hitter this season. The senior infielder has a .357 batting average, .960 OPS and a .500 slugging percentage. Junior catcher Burke Camper brings the power for the Tigers as he has a team leading seven home runs and a .554 slugging percentage. While no qualified hitters have an average over .300 – outside of McLaughlin – the Terps pitching staff will still need to limit giving up the long ball as hitting home runs is the Tigers strength.

Pitchers to watch:

While the pitching staff has struggled as a whole, the Tigers closer Jake Pecilunas has been a bright spot this year. In 2022, the graduate student has a 2.25 ERA, 1.05 WHIP along with four saves. After allowing three runs in his first appearance of the season he has been lights out. Just two earned runs allowed in his last 19 innings of work.

Probable pitching matchup

Logan Ott vs. Teddy Blumenauer

Ott is familiar with this role as he has made eight starts for the Terps this season which is tied for the third most on the team. Ott enters with a 6.67 ERA and a 1-0 record. Ott struggled in his last outing against James Madison as he gave up five earned runs in 2 2/3 innings of work.

Blumenauer has had a rocky season so far posting a 15.19 ERA in seven appearances, five of them being starts. Blumenauer has not pitched since April 10 and could be on the bump to start for the Tigers. No matter who starts the game for Towson, they likely plan to throw a lot of different pitchers.

Maryland Extends its Winning Streak to Four With a Win Against UMBC

No. 22 Maryland continues to stay hot at the plate as it defeated UMBC, 13-7, in College Park, Maryland on Tuesday.

Although the game took place in College Park, the Terps were the away team for the game.

They wasted no time scoring as sophomore catcher Luke Shliger hit a double to start the game and came around to score on a double from junior third baseman Nick Lorusso.

Lorusso’s double extends his hitting streak to six games. Lorusso talked about the team’s offensive success over the past few games after the win. “I think a lot of our guys are starting to build this confidence now where we can hit anything on any given day,” said Lorusso.

The game looked like it could get out of hand as Maryland scored its third run of the game when junior left fielder Bobby Zmarzlak hit a solo home run over the batter’s eye in center field.

Following the home run, freshman designated hitter Sean Lane doubled, sophomore second basemen Kevin Keister tripled and Shliger singled to add two more runs for the Terps and extend their lead to four.

A three run fourth inning by the Retrievers would knock Maryland’s starter Logan Ott out of the game.

The Maryland offense began to do more damage in the top of the sixth inning. After a bases-loaded walk scored one, fifth year centerfielder Chris Alleyne hit a fly ball into right field that allowed Zmarzlak to score from third. The throw from senior right fielder Ian Diaz was cut off as Shliger got caught between first and second base. The rundown allowed Keister to round third and hustle home to score the Terps’ seventh run of the game.

Maryland Head Coach Rob Vaughn talked about his offense’s performance at the plate against UMBC.

“I thought the offense was just really relentless all day,” said Vaughn. “I told them good teams make mistakes but good teams learn from their mistakes and don’t let it happen again.”

UMBC fought all game as they added three more runs in the bottom of the seventh and cut Maryland’s lead back to three.

Entering the ninth inning with a three run lead the Terps finally broke the game open once and for all. Keister got his fourth hit of the day on a double to centerfield to highlight a four-run top of the ninth for Maryland.

Keister has 10 hits in his last 17 at-bats for the Terps. Vaughn discussed Keister’s hot stretch at the plate.

“When the opportunity presented itself he’s taken advantage of it,” said Vaughn. “His at-bats are just really tough right now. He’s hitting with two strikes, he’s hitting some doubles and doing some different things.”

The Retrievers attempted to mount a comeback in the bottom of the ninth but sophomore pitcher David Falco finished the victory off.

Maryland will travel to the Lone Star State this weekend as it takes on the Dallas Baptist Patriots. First pitch is at 7:30 p.m. on Friday with Nick Dean listed as the probable starter for the Terps.

Midweek Preview: UMBC Retrievers

Maryland is coming off an impressive weekend against Siena. The Terps pulled off a sweep fueled by their offense.

The Terps played a double header to begin the weekend against Siena. In game one, Maryland scored 14 runs on 15 hits.

A 7-0 victory to end the day was another dominant performance from junior Ryan Ramsey. Ramsey pitched six innings, allowed one hit, and struck out 11 batters.

In the team’s most impressive performance this season, Maryland beat Siena, 19-2. The Terps’ offense erupted for 18 hits, four home runs and just three strikeouts.

Sophomore Jason Savacool continued his excellent season on the mound. He recorded seven shutout innings with 14 strikeouts and one hit allowed.

UMBC Retrievers (8-11)

Last Season

The 2021 season started great for UMBC. The team started the year 6-0 and scored more than 10 runs in five of the six games. They struggled in conference play, going 12-26. Ian Diaz was UMBC’s best power hitter last year. Diaz had eight home runs and 29 RBI.

This Season

The Retrievers have had an interesting season to this point. They are 8-5 at home this season but are 0-6 on the road. This game against Maryland was originally scheduled to take place in UMBC’s home ballpark. However, while UMBC is still considered the home team, the game will take place in College Park.

Hitters to Watch

UMBC’s offense is headlined by graduate student Myles Nicholson who has a .420 batting average, 1.129 OPS and 14 stolen bases. In the Retrievers first game against Maryland, first basemen Luke Trythall had two hits in three at-bats against the Terps. Trythall is hitting .276 with 19 RBI.

Pitchers to Watch

Senior Colton Bare enters with the lowest ERA in the Retrievers bullpen. Bare has appeared in six games and has allowed one run in eight innings pitched.

Probable Starting Pitching Matchup

Logan Ott vs Keegan Leffler

Ott has pitched during the week multiple times this season for the Terps. He enters this game with a 6.59 ERA in 13 2/3 innings pitched. During his last performance, Ott pitched three innings and did not allow a batter to reach base.

Leffler is a left-handed pitcher who has pitched in 18 innings for UMBC this season. He has a 1-2 record to go along with a 4.50 ERA. Leffler is not a traditional starting pitcher. His longest outing this year was against Niagara where he pitched six innings and allowed three runs in a Retrievers victory.

Costes Stays Hot, Maryland beats Georgetown 5-1

A Monday night game at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium was all Terps as No. 24 Maryland defeated Georgetown, 5-1.

First baseman Maxwell Costes extended the Terps lead to three in the fifth inning when he a two-run home run. That long ball from the senior was his seventh on the season and extended his home run streak to three games.

Costes spoke pregame about his recent success at the plate.

“I found something mechanically that I think is working for me and now adding that into a good process that I already had, I think that this is reaping the benefits of it,” said Costes.

The Hoyas began the scoring in the top of the second inning when graduate student and first baseman Ubaldo Lopez hit a no-doubt home run in the second inning over the wall in left field. That home run was all the damage the Hoyas managed against the Terps.

Junior starting pitcher Jason Savacool had everything working today and did not allow another hit until the top of the seventh inning when Lopez hit a double down the left field line. Savacool finished the game with eight innings pitched, and he allowed just three hits and one run while striking out nine.

While Savacool was excellent for Maryland tonight, he gave some of the credit to the man behind the plate for the Terps, sophomore catcher Luke Shliger.

“I’m a guy who throws a two-seam, sometimes those two-seams leak into the dirt and he’s there to block it,” said Savacool. “He’s huge behind the plate, he’s always huge for this pitching staff.”

Freshman Zach Martin made his first start for the Terps tonight starting in right field and batting ninth. Following the win, head coach Rob Vaughn discussed the Maryland natives performance.

“It’s so hard to not just try to do extra to show coach I should play tomorrow,” said Vaughn. “He went out and gave us really good at bats.”

Junior third baseman Nick Lorusso was a problem all night for Georgetown, as he hit his second home run of the season and finished the game a triple shy of the cycle.

“I try to treat every day like it’s a new day, like it’s opening day,” said Lorusso. “I saw pitches over the middle of the plate that I can hammer and that’s exactly what happened.”

Senior pitcher Sean Heine came in to pitch the ninth inning for the Terps. With the crowd giving Heine a standing ovation, he struck out Lopez to end the game and seal the victory.

Maryland will play its third day in a row as the Terps head to Newark, Delaware, to play the Delaware Blue Hens tomorrow at 3:00 P.M. The Terps will have reinforcements on the way to help their bullpen as coach Vaughn said the team will get sophomore David Falco and graduate student Nick Robinson back.

Ryan Ramsey Sets a New Career High in Strike Outs as Maryland Beats Cornell

The Terps dominated on a cold day at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium as Maryland defeated Cornell, 12-5.

Junior starting pitcher Ryan Ramsey was electric for the Terps as he struck out a career-high 13 batters in six innings of work against the Big Red.

Ramsey had his best stuff from the first pitch and he credited his approach to some of his success.

“My biggest thing today is just making sure that I’m getting ahead of guys,” said Ramsey. “Having command the whole entire game, especially with the changeup, having that and having a fastball command as well.”

For the second straight game, Maryland’s offense got started early.

After a scoreless first inning, senior first basemen Maxwell Costes got Maryland on the board with a two-run home run to right center field.

That long ball was the senior’s sixth home run of the season and he spoke postgame about his hot stretch.

“I made a couple of adjustments to not only my mechanics but also how I go about hitting,” said Costes. “I feel like I’ve become much more aggressive at the plate.”

The Terps broke the game open in the fourth inning. Junior outfielders Bobby Zmarzlak and Troy Schreffler Jr. pulled off a double steal to set up Jacob Orr for a RBI infield single.

Junior starting pitcher Spencer Edwards lost the strike zone towards the end of his outing for Cornell. With the bases loaded, Edwards walked Luke Shliger, hit Chris Alleyne with a pitch, and walked Matt Shaw before being replaced.

The Terps managed to bat around in the fourth inning and extend their lead to 10.

Freshman pitcher Michael Walsh made his Maryland debut in relief of Ramsey and struck out two batters in his first inning of work.

Cornell tried to get back in the game as junior second basemen Ryan Ross hit a grand slam in the eighth inning to cut Maryland’s lead down to six.

Junior pitcher Matt Orlando came in to get the last six outs in what was his third consecutive game out of the bullpen for the Terps and halt the Big Red’s comeback.

Maryland’s head coach Rob Vaughn spoke about Orlando’s impact out of the bullpen this season.

“That guy was a third basemen until about three weeks before the season,” said Vaughn. “Every time he’s touched a baseball he’s gotten a little bit more confidence. He’s gotten better and better.”

Maryland will play Georgetown again on Monday night at 6:00 p.m. in College Park. Sophmore Jason Savacool is the probable starting pitcher for the Terps and will look to earn his third win of the season.

Terps Go Home Happy After a Walk off Home Run from Matt Shaw

A walk off homerun by sophomore shortstop Matt Shaw at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium gives No. 24 Maryland a 10-9 victory over Georgetown in College Park, Maryland on Friday night.

The Terps felt like they were down the entire game but never quit. At one point, Maryland trailed 9-5. Junior third basemen and pitcher Nick Lorusso pitched three shutout innings for the Terps and kept them in the. “The approach was attack, attack them and trust the defense behind me to make plays.”

Head Coach Rob Vaughn spoke about the Maryland pitching tonight.

“The story of that game is Orlando and Lorusso and the fact they were able to get some zeros in the middle and give us a chance,” said Vaughn.

On a 2-0 count in the bottom of the ninth, Shaw hit an opposite field home run that barely stayed fair down the right field line.

Shaw spoke about the game after his celebration with his teammates.

“Being able to stay positive is hard,” said Shaw. ”But you really don’t have a choice.”

The Hoyas wasted no time getting a lead when sophomore right fielder Jake Hyde took the first pitch of the game and put it over the batters’ eye in center field.

Maryland immediately counter punched as fifth year center fielder Chris Alleyne tied the game up during his first at bat with a solo home run. A few minutes later, senior first basemen Maxwell Costes gave the Terps a two-run lead with a two-run home run.

After a clean second inning, sophomore pitcher Logan Ott had the bases loaded with nobody out in the third. Junior shortstop Andrew Ciufo hit a grand slam to retake the lead for the Hoyas and knock Ott out of the game.

Maryland got a run back on a sacrifice fly from Shaw.

Georgetown answered back in the fourth with a monster three-run home run over the left field wall off the bat of graduate student second basemen Ethan Stern.

Another sacrifice fly from Maryland cut the deficit to three until sophomore center fielder Andrew Bergeron hit a solo home run into right-center field to extend the lead back to four.

“I thought our dugout fully expected us to win that game,” said Vaughn. “I don’t think anyone felt nervous.”

Down 9-5 in the seventh, the Terps loaded the bases for Lorusso, who hit into a fielder’s choice to score one run. Junior left fielder Bobby Zmarzlak came through with a clutch two out two-RBI single into left field to bring the home crowd back to life and bring the game within one run.

The Terps got leadoff hitter Alleyne on base after a Hoyas error. That error opened the door for Shaw to send the Terps home happy.

Maryland now turns its attention to Cornell, who they will be facing on Sunday after the game on Saturday was moved due to bad weather.  

Weekend Preview: Georgetown, Cornell

Maryland enters the weekend ready to face two teams in three days. The Terps host Georgetown University on Friday in College Park, before turning their attention to Cornell who they play Saturday. The Terps close the weekend series on the road as they take on Georgetown in Bethesda, Maryland.  

While the Terps were scheduled to play two games against VCU during the week, a postponement prevented game two from happening. In their only game against VCU, the Terps walked away with an 8-6 win over the Rams.

Maryland wasted no time showing off its power as Chris Alleyne and Nick Lorusso each hit a solo home run in the bottom of the first inning. Alleyne didn’t stop with one home run as he added another solo shot in the third inning. Bobby Zmazlak hit his second home run of the season and the Terps fourth of the game. Luke Shliger had three RBI on the day including a double which gave the Terps the lead in the sixth inning.

Freshman Ryan Van Buren toed the rubber for the Terps on Tuesday. Van Buren finished the outing with three runs on three hits in three innings pitched. Five Terps relievers got some to see some action following Van Buren’s outing, including Will Glock who made his sixth appearance for the Terps and earned his first save of the season.

Georgetown Hoyas (8-4)

Last Season

The Hoyas had a difficult 2021 season finishing with a 6-25 record. Georgetown struggled on the mound and at the plate last year. The team had a .195 batting average with six home runs. The team’s pitching staff had a combined 5.83 ERA.

This Season

Georgetown has managed to completely turn their hitting around to start this season. In their 12 games, the Hoyas have a .271 average with 19 home runs. The team has had a few breakout players who have fueled their offense through this point in the season.

Hitters to Watch

Two hitters have carried the Hoyas offense so far this season. Jake Hyde, a sophomore, enters this weekend with a .480 batting average and three home runs. Andrew Ciufo has led the power surge with a team-leading four home runs and 14 RBI.

Pitchers to Watch

The Terps will potentially face Andrew Williams in one of this weekend’s games. Williams made his first start of the season against UMass, and he finished with two runs allowed in five innings pitched. On the season, Williams has a 1.93 ERA in three total appearances.

Cornell Big Red (2-4)

Last Season

Cornell’s baseball season was canceled in 2021 due to the pandemic. In 2020, they played just nine games and had a 1-8 record before the season was cut short.

This Season

Cornell has had an interesting start to the season so far. In its two wins, the Big Red have outscored their opponents 25-12. However, in their losses this year they have been outscored 81-14. They last played against Coppin State on March 6, losing 21-2 against the Eagles.

Hitters to Watch

Joe Hollerbach is currently leading the team average, home runs and RBI. The junior third baseman is the third hitter in the Big Red lineup and has managed a .542 batting average to go along with two home runs, six RBI and a 1.607 OPS.

Pitchers to Watch

Cornell weekend rotation has consisted of Spencer Edwards, Luke Yacinich and Kevin Cushing thus far. The pitching staff as a whole has struggled to begin the season posting a team ERA of 14.04.

Probable Starting pitching matchups:

Friday, 4:00 p.m. ET

Jr. RHP Nick Dean (2-0, 0.93 ERA) vs Fr. LHP Andrew Williams (0-1, 1.93 ERA)

Nick Dean started the year off with 14 shutout innings against Baylor and Campbell. Dean took on Michigan in his last start and pitched 5.1 innings while allowing four hits and two earned runs.

A freshman from Atlanta, Williams has made three appearances for Georgetown this season. The lefty has struck out 16 batters in 9 1/3 innings pitched.

Saturday, 12:00 p.m. ET

Jr. LHP Ryan Ramsey (3-0, 3.72 ERA) vs Jr. LHP Spencer Edwards (1-1, 8.31 ERA)

Through his three starts, Ramsey has a perfect 3-0 record with eight earned runs allowed in 19 1/3 innings pitched.

Edwards is coming off his best start of his career where he held Coppin State to two earned runs in six innings while striking out eight.

Sunday, 4:00 p.m. ET

So. RHP Jason Savacool (2-1, 3.27 ERA) vs Sr. LHP Kyle Salley (2-0, 8.18 ERA)

Savacool took his first loss of the season against East Carolina last weekend. He pitched seven innings and allowed five earned runs on nine hits.

A senior, Salley spent the first three years of his college career at Duke. He is coming off a win against UMass where he pitched 4 1/3 innings and gave up four earned runs.

Preseason Countdown No. 4: Infield Preview

With the Terps losing a plethora of infielders including Austin Chavis, Tommy Gardiner and Benjamin Cowles, Head coach Rob Vaughn and his staff are entering the season with a diverse class of nine infielders.

Meet the infield.

FR INF Jacob Orr
A shortstop during his high school career, Orr was ranked the No. 2 shortstop in Maryland and the No. 10 overall recruit. Orr is from Frederick, Maryland and played his high school baseball at Thomas Johnson.

SR INF Maxwell Costes
Costes is entering his fourth year at Maryland. The Terps starting first basemen, Costes was excellent in 2021 as he had a .310 batting average with .512 on base percentage. Costes started 110 games during his time at Maryland and has 24 home runs and 94 RBI over that span.

SO INF Matt Shaw
Shaw’s freshman season was a successful one as the Terps second basemen finished with a .332 batting average, seven home runs and 30 RBI. Shaw’s freshman season earned him a spot on the 2021 Big Ten All-Freshman team and was named a 2021 collegiate baseball freshman All-American.

SO INF Kevin Keister
Keister played in 17 games during the 2021 season, starting in 12 of them. Keister had a batting average of .098 during his first year with a .245 on base percentage. While he mostly saw time at second base last year, Keister came to College Park as the second-ranked shortstop prospect in Delaware, according to Perfect Game.

JR INF Matt Orlando
Orlando has spent time at first base and third base during his collegiate career. Orlando has a lifetime .181 batting average across 32 games. In 2021, Orlando saw his on base percentage increase from .270 to .307 while also raising his slugging percentage from .212 to .292.

JR INF Drew Grace
A transfer from Kentucky, Grace appeared in 28 games for the Wildcats. Grace had a .160 batting average with 7 RBI across 28 games in Lexington. Perfect Game rated Grace as the No. 64 shortstop in his high school class.

FR INF Sean Lane
From New York, Lane was rated as the best first basemen in his class from the state of New York by Perfect Game. The 6 foot 4 freshman was named to the 2021 Perfect Game preseason All-American team.

JR INF Nick Lorusso
Lorusso joins the Maryland team after spending time at Villanova University. Lorusso had a .294 batting average with five home runs and 49 RBI in 88 games. He was named Big East Freshman of the Year and second team All-Big East will at Villanova.

JR INF Michael Bouma
Bouma has two seasons under his belt in College Park. He has appeared in 8 games in his career with a .400 batting average in five at-bats. Bouma has seen time at first base as a defensive replacement as well.

Preseason Countdown No. 9: Meet the newcomers — Transfers

The Terps and Head Coach Rob Vaughn may have lost some of their best players this offseason — Benjamin Cowles, Justin Vought, and Randy Bednar to name a few. But a new year means a new wave of transfers who could very well replace the impact that those players had.

With three players transferring to the University of Maryland over the offseason — all juniors or older — the Terps come into the 2022 season with a fresh batch of experience.

Meet the newcomers:

GR RHP Nick Robinson — University of Rhode Island

Graduate student Nick Robinson is joining Maryland’s pitching staff after spending his first five college years at the University of Rhode Island. Robinson’s older brother, Alex, pitched at Maryland from 2013-2015 before the Minnesota Twins drafted him.

Robinson stands at 6-foot-5 and posted a 0.84 ERA in the 2021 season in 10 2/3 innings pitched. Robinson has experience as a starter and reliever, having appeared in 44 games and starting in 14 of them. In 2019, Robinson made 10 starts in 14 games for the Rams. He pitched 61 2/3 innings that season and finished with a 6.13 ERA.

JR INF Nick Lorusso — Villanova University

Former Villanova University infielder Nick Lorusso is joining Maryland for his junior season. Lorusso played three seasons at Villanova where he had a .294 batting average with five home runs and 49 RBI in 88 games. In 2019, he was named Big East Freshman of the year and second team All-Big East. Lorusso made the Big East All-Academic team three times and the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll four times.

JR INF Drew Grace — University of Kentucky

A Pennsylvania native, Grace spent his last two years at the University of Kentucky where he played in 28 games for the Wildcats. In seven starts, Grace had a .160 batting average with seven RBI and a perfect fielding percentage. Grace made SEC first-year academic honor roll during his time in Lexington, Kentucky. In 2019, Perfect Game rated Grace as the No. 64 shortstop in the nation before committing to Kentucky.