The Kutztown baseball team has had no shortage of offense this season. The Golden Bears are batting a cumulative .304 batting average, which is seventh in the PSAC. KU is also fifth in the PSAC in RBI’s and sixth in hits.
These numbers have been key factors in Kutztown winning 23 of its last 30 games, which included an 11 game winning streak over that span. KU also recently ended a five game winning streak in which they scored 43 runs total. Last week, the Golden Bears scored a season-high 17 runs against Philadelphia University, breaking their previous season best in which they scored 16 runs against Adelphi University.
The main pulse of the offense has been provided by a powerful one-two-three punch in the middle of the lineup with sophomore Brandon Martinez, senior Matt Albaugh and senior Brett Hauck. Albaugh and Martinez, who played together and graduated from North Penn High School, are each in the top ten in the PSAC for on-base percentage.
From an individual standpoint, Albuagh has been one of the most productive players on the roster, as he is in the top five in every offensive category on the team this season. Two noted performances by Albaugh were when he went 3-5 with a home run along with five RBI in a sweep against Bloomsburg and when he went 4-6 with three runs scored against Shippensburg.
To add to his accolades, the senior was recently named to the Tino Martinez award watch list, a yearly award given to the best baseball player in Division II.
Martinez is fifth in the PSAC in batting average and leads the team in hits. The Lansdale native was also recently named PSAC East Athlete of the Week. The sophomore has clearly been one of KU’s most consistent players this season with his imposing presence at the plate.
When asked about Martinez’s success swinging the bat, head coach Chris Blum accredited it to his work ethic and desire for improvement.
“Brandon had a little flaw in his swing when he came to KU, and worked all fall and winter working on that flaw.” Blum said. “It’s good to see the hard work paying off for him.”
Hauck, a local guy who grew up in Kutztown, is second on the team in runs scored and doubles. Hauck is also third on the team in hits. Two memorable performances by him this season were when he went 6-7 with an RBI with a run scored in a sweep over Mansfield and when he went 6-8 with an RBI and scored two runs against Shippensburg.
As the regular season comes to a close, the maroon and gold have looked very cohesive offensively and that should likely entail a deep playoff run. With the Golden Bear offense clicking, this should be a good sign of things to come.
The Golden Bears are currently ranked 29th in Division II and are second in the PSAC east with a 14-6 record in their division, and a 29-11 record overall.
By Steve Maugeri