Area Sports Briefs: Catawba’s Raper, Shepherd Academic All-Americans
AUSTIN, Texas — Catawba’s Jackson Raper and Hunter Shepherd earned spots on the 2020 CoSIDA Academic All-America® Division II baseball team, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America.
Raper, a senior third baseman, was named to the second team, while Shepherd, a senior pitcher and first baseman, claimed third team honors.
Raper achieved a 3.62 GPA while majoring in accounting. On the field, the senior was putting up solid numbers before 2020 came in an end. He was hitting .436 with nine homers and 35 RBI. For his career, Raper boasted a .355 average with 28 homers and 160 RBI. His 233 hits rank 16th all-time, while also ranking with career leaders in RBI (12th) and doubles, with 55 (7th).
In 2019, Raper earned honorable mention All-America honors from the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA). That year he repeated as a second team All-South Atlantic Conference selection and a member of the SAC All-Tournament team. Raper also received the SAC Defensive Team Award at third base.
Shepherd posted a 3.64 GPA as a communications major. In 2020, Shepherd was 3-0 on the mound over six starts. He had a 2.63 ERA over 27 and a third innings with 28 strikeouts and only six walks. At the plate, the senior was batting .447 with nine homers and 26 RBI. Over his career, Shepherd has a 23-6 record with two saves. His wins stand 12th all-time and he ranks 20th with 211 strikeouts.
Shepherd had twice been a SAC Player of the Week in 2020. In 2019, he was the SAC Tournament MVP. Shepherd was the 2017 SAC Freshman of the Year and a second team All-SAC selection.
Despite the cancellation of spring competition during COVID-19, CoSIDA continued its sponsorship of the Academic All-America awards program. Student-athletes were selected based on career statistics.
FIRST TEAM Pos – Name (School, GPA, Yr, Major)
P – J.J. Niekro (Florida Southern, 4.00, Sr, Sports Communications & Marketing)
P – Walter Pennington (2) (Colorado School of Mines, 3.94, Sr, Mechanical Engineering)
C – Chris Gambert (3) (Bellarmine, 3.70, Sr, Exercise Science)
INF – Aaron Anderson (3) (Flagler, 4.00, Sr, Accounting / Business Administration)
INF – Jacob Buchberger (1) (Davenport, 3.76, Sr, Medical Case Management)
INF – Josh Finerty (Bellarmine, 3.90, Sr, Biology)
INF – Daulton Martin (Tusculum, 3.53, Sr, Business Management)
OF – Clayton Engel (Drury, 3.78, Sr, Management)
OF – Riley Johnson (Augustana, 3.51, Sr, Mathematics)
OF – Logan Soole (Metropolitan State, 3.96, Sr, K-12 Physical Education)
DH – Derek Daly (Colorado School of Mines, 3.62, Sr, Chemical & Biochemical Engineering)
SECOND TEAM P – Eric Mullet (Malone, 3.76, Sr, Business Administration & Finance)
P – Brandon Weed (UC San Diego, 3.33, Sr, International Business)
C – Spencer Bramwell (Colorado Mesa, 3.46, Jr, Health & Fitness Promotion)
INF – Jackson Kritsch (San Francisco State, 3.90, Sr, Accounting)
INF – Nathan Mark (1 (Rockhurst, 3.98, Jr, History/Political Science/Theology)
INF – Nathan Neff (Concord, 3.97, Sr, Business/Accounting & Finance)
INF – Jackson Raper (Catawba, 3.62, Sr, Accounting)
OF – Manny Lopez (Southern Indiana, 3.93, Sr, Mechanical Engineering)
OF – Cole Swiger (Bloomsburg, 3.55, Sr, Finance)
OF – Tyler Thompson (Carson-Newman, 3.53, Jr, Biology)
DH – Joseph Kim (Azusa Pacific, 3.92, Sr, Accounting)
THIRD TEAM P – Hunter Shepherd (Catawba, 3.64,Sr, Communications)
P – Devin Smith (Kentucky Wesleyan, 3.70, Sr, Business Administration)
C – Dalton Robison (Salem, 3.79, Sr, Biology)
C – Tyler Stofiel (Chico State, 3.94, Sr, Business Administration)
INF – Tyler Adams (Lincoln Memorial, 3.44, Sr, Exercise Science)
INF – Matt Clarke (Colorado-Colorado Springs, 3.69, Sr, Business Management)
INF – Palmer Ford (Alabama-Huntsville, 4.00, Sr, Biology)
INF – John Mooradian (Mercy, 3.75, Sr, Nursing)
OF – Daschal Johnson (NW Oklahoma State, 3.97/3.93, Gr, Health & Sports Science)
OF – Colby Johnson (Charleston, 3.33, Sr, Biology)
OF – Jacob Vasquez (St. Edward’s, 3.91, Sr, Pre-Physical Therapy)
DH – Carson Mittermaier (Ashland, 3.32, Sr, Business Management)
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