Six named to All-OVC football teams
BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – Six Eastern Illinois football players were honored on Tuesday by the Ohio Valley Conference as the league announced its post-season All-OVC awards. EIU finished the season at 3-8 overall, 3-5 in the OVC.
Alexander Hollins was named a first-team All-OVC selection while Isaiah Johnson, James Sheehan, Levi Watson and Nick Bruno were named to the All-OVC second team. Johnathan Brantley was named to the All-OVC Newcomer Team.
Hollins was the lone Panther on the OVC first team after ranking among the nation's top wide receivers all season. On Monday he was named one of 25 finalists for this year's Walter Payton FCS Offensive Player of the Year Award. Hollins was second in the FCS with 16 touchdown receptions. He had 80 catches for 1,102 yards during the season with both totals ranking in the top 15 in the FCS. Hollins had five games with multiple touchdown catches and five games with 100 or more yards receiving. He was an All-OVC Newcomer selection as a junior in 2017.
Johnson was named a second-team All-OVC running back for the second straight season. He finished the year as the Panthers top rusher with 708 yards and seven rushing touchdowns. Johnson added 30 catches for 215 yards. Johnson ended the season with three straight 100-yard rushing games and posted four 100-yard rushing games for the season.
Sheehan was a second-team All-OVC selection at tight end as he ranked first among OVC tight ends in catches this season with 50. Sheehan had 544 yards and three touchdowns. His best receiving day was 108 yards at Eastern Kentucky. He had seven games during the season with five or more catches including a high of eight against Tennessee State.
Watson was a second-team All-OVC selection at defensive tackle as he was the team leader with three sacks on the season. Watson finished the year with 55 tackles including ten tackles for loss, three pass break-ups and four quarterback hurries. He posted a season-high 10 tackles against UT Martin.
Bruno was the second team All-OVC selection at both placekicker and punter. The senior was 12-of-14 in field goal attempts this season and perfect from inside of 40-yards. He was 37-of-40 on extra points as he finished his EIU career ranking second in both career field goals made and career extra points made. As a punter, Bruno averaged 40.4 yards per punt and ranked first in the OVC with 20 punts pinned inside the 20-yard line.
Brantley was named to the All-OVC Newcomer Team after starting nine of the 11 games at quarterback this season. The Tulane transfer set the OVC record for consecutive pass attempts without an interception at 230. He passed for 2,016 yards with 14 passing touchdowns and another six rushing touchdowns. Brantley's passing numbers for the season were 200-of-307 as he is completion percentage of 65.1 percent ranked eighth in the nation.
EIU baseball signs 7 for 2020 roster
CHARLESTON — The Eastern Illinois baseball team and Head Coach Jason Anderson have announced the addition of seven new members that will join the program for the 2020 season. The Panthers will bring in two junior college transfers as well as five high school commits. EIU added three impact arms to their pitching staff with Jason Jennerjohn, Jalen Cardinal, and Trevor Nicholson. Coble Crim, Sean Lynch, Ben Snapp, and Talon File look to bring more speed and power to the EIU lineup.
"We are very pleased to announce the new additions to the baseball team for the 2020 season" said Coach Anderson. "We have made a lot of progress with the program over the last few years which has put us in a position to search for the type of players that would compete for a conference championship in the OVC on a consistent basis. This group of players, combined with the young players already in the program, will be exciting to watch on the field and continue to represent EIU in the highest regards off the field as well. Coach Godinez and our staff have done a tremendous job in identifying prospects and showing them everything our university has to offer."
Crim is an outfielder and left-handed pitcher that attends Paducah Tilghman High School where he has been named an academic all-state honorable mention in each of his four years. He was voted to the Paducah All-Purchase team in each of his first three years of high school while also being selected to the All-Region team. At Paducah Tilghman, Crim is coached by Chris Johnson and Greg McKeel. During the summer, he plays for the Kentucky Prospects coached by Trumaine Donald.
"Colbe is a two-way player that really impressed us with his physicality as a left-handed pitcher and hitter. He is also a successful football player that brings a great mentality to the baseball field," Anderson said. "Colbe instantly shot up to the top of our recruiting board when we saw him at our showcase in February. He is going to thrive in the conference as he develops as a hitter and pitcher."
Jennerjohn is a right-handed pitcher from Hortonville High School where as a junior he threw 36.1 innings while posting a 2.89 ERA and striking out 44 batters. In the spring of 2018, Jennerjohn was a unanimous selection for First Team All-Conference in the Fox Valley Association. At Hortinville, Jennerjohn is coached by Greg Yeager.
"We committed Jason early in the process after he displayed a great mix of pitches. He has a nice fastball that is complemented by a good slider and changeup," Anderson said. "He is also coming from a great organization in the Wisconsin Panthers that has already brought Grant Emme to EIU. Jason will fit into our program perfectly with his athleticism and competitiveness on the mound."
Lynch is an outfielder from Carmel Catholic High School in Illinois where he has been awarded the IHSA Scholastic Academic Achievement award. At Carmel Catholic, Lynch plays for Coach Bill Taylor who is an EIU baseball alum. During the summer, He plays for Slammers Baseball where he is coached by Frank Berry, Matt Pitzulo, Ed Tolzien and Gary Bennett.
"Sean is another very physical athlete that we are excited about. He has a unique combination of strength and speed that should develop into an impact player in this league," Anderson said. "He is also an exceptional football player that will bring a tough mentality into the program. Sean possesses the ability to win a game in a lot of different ways on offense and defense."
Snapp is a catcher who attends Madison Central High School in Richmond, Kentucky. Ben has been a 3-year starter in both baseball and football. He has seen time throughout his high school career behind the plate and around the infield. As a junior, Snapp hit .355 while leading his team with 45 RBI's and 5 triples. He was named to the Region 11 All-Tournament Team while helping his team advance to the state tournament. Snapp was named to the Kentucky East/West All-Star Team each of the past two years as well. Snapp is coached by Steve Roof at Madison Central and by David Rice in the summer for Elite Baseball Club.
"Ben fits the mold of what we are looking for in a high school baseball player. He has excelled on both the football and baseball diamond as a two-sport athlete," Anderson said. "He displays a combination of skills that are going to make him an exciting multidimensional player during his time at EIU. He is an outstanding catcher with a great arm that can run and hit for power. Ben will also bring great communication and leadership to a pitching staff when he is behind the plate."
Cardinal is a left-handed pitcher that attends Vincennes Lincoln High School in Vincennes, Indiana. As a freshman, Cardinal started on the mound but missed his sophomore year due to an injury. He bounced back to have a solid junior year and will be a big piece for them this upcoming season. During the past 2 summers, Cardinal pitched for Demand Command based out of Bedford, Indiana. They are coached by Jim Wells and Zach McClellan.
"Jalen is a presence on the mound, standing at 6 feet 5 inches tall. We were really impressed with Jalen this summer," Anderson said. "He shows a different look for hitters while locating his fastball to both sides of the plate. Jalen also has great athleticism for his size and will develop into a unique left-handed pitcher that we have not seen at EIU in a while. We are excited to add his size and pitching ability to our pitching staff."
Nicholson is a left-handed pitcher for Rend Lake College. As a freshman, he lead his team in innings pitched with 73.2 while striking out 74 batters and walking only 18, earning a 3.05 ERA. At Rend Lake, Nicholson is coached by Tyler O'Daniel.
"Trevor is going to be a force on our pitching staff and in the league. He displays everything I look for in a pitcher and has a history of success to back it up," Anderson said. "He is blessed with a great arm and a bulldog mentality on the mound. Trevor also has an advanced feel for pitching that will give him a chance to have immediate success at the D1 level."
File is an infielder that plays for Lincoln Land College in Springfield, Illinois. As a freshman, he started in 56 games. File hit .278 in 194 at bats while collecting 54 hits, 13 doubles, 2 triples and leading his team with 10 home runs and 48 RBI's. File was awarded the MWAC Academic All-Conference award. He plays for Ron Riggle at Lincoln Land College.
"Talon is fun to watch and is an absolute gamer. We have followed him since the first time we saw him as a freshman at Lincoln Land and he has never disappointed," Anderson said. "He has a great combination of athleticism and a strong swing. He has the ability to affect the game on both offense and defense with his versatility. He will fit in perfectly with a group of infielders that will be special over the next few years."
Escott named Summit League Male Swimmer of the Week
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — Eastern Illinois swimmer Ivan Escott was named the Summit League Male Swimmer of the Week.
Escott, a sophomore, broke the oldest EIU record during the prelims of the 100-fly with a time of 50.70 seasons. The previous record was 50.86 and had stood since 1982.
Escott earned two top 10 finishes at the House of Champions meet this past weekend. He finished in the top-10 in the 400-yard medley relay and the 200-yard medley relay. It is his first first career swimmer of the week honor.
EIU swimmers finish strong in HOC finale
Indianapolis – In the final day at the midseason House of Champions meet, the Eastern Illinois men's and women's swimming teams earned a combined 15 top 25 finishes.
The women combined for five top 25 finishes to close out the House of Champions. Lauren Oostman was the top finisher for the women as she earned sixth place honors in the 200-Back (2:02.96). Katy Black earned 25th in the 200-Back at 2:10.29. Rachel Manderscheid earned 25th place honors in the 200-Breast with her time of 2:32.19.
The men combined for ten top 25 finishes to close out the weekend. Scott House was the top finisher for the men as he earned 13th place honors in the 100-Free touching the wall at 45.92. His time moved him up in the EIU record books two positions. Ethan Dolan found his way into the EIU records books in the 200-Back with his time of 1:54.98, Andrew Crouse finished 23rd at 1:57.61, and Joel Talley placed 25th at 1:57.08. Griffin Lewis placed 25th in the 100-Free, touching the wall at 46.95. In the 200-Fly Jake Gleeson placed 21st at 1:58.87, Austin Kueck placed 22nd at 1:59.09, and Ivan Escott placed 25th at 1:59.12.
The women's quartet of Sarah Lohman, Oostman, Grace Kennedy, and Martee Grainger closed out the House of Champions meet with a ninth-place finish in the 400-Free Relay (3:35.90). On the men's side, the quartet of House, Lewis, Forrest Baumgartner, and Nick Harkins touched the wall eighth at 3:09.28.
Following the House of Champions the Panthers will travel to Terre Haute, Indiana where they will compete in the Indiana State Relay Meet on Dec. 1st.