RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Felician University senior Matt Diesel (Massapequa Park, N.Y./Massapequa) has been named the 2018 NCAA Division II East Region Baseball Player of the Year by all three recognized All-Region programs.
The ABCA/Rawlings D-II All-Region Teams were announced today by the American Baseball Coaches Association. On May 16 and 18, the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) and Division 2 Conference Commissioners Association (D2CCA) publicized their regional award winners within a 40-hour period. The D2CCA teams were coordinated and voted upon by members of the College Sports Information Directors of America.
Diesel, a 6-foot, 195-pound outfielder, was also the Player of the Year in the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC). He is the third Regional Player of the Year in baseball for Felician, but the first consensus winner. First baseman Frank Quintana was honored by the Daktronics (now D2CCA) program in 2007, and shortstop Aaron Brill was the Daktronics 2014 East winner.
"I am truly honored to win an award like this," Diesel said. "There are so many other great players in the region. I am thankful to my coaches, teammates, and family for always supporting me and pushing me to strive for greatness."
Diesel enjoyed one of the most prolific offensive seasons in the 19-year history of the Golden Falcon program. He ranks sixth nationally in Division II with a .435 batting average, and slugged .700 with a .500 on-base percentage. In 55 games, he set single season school records for hits (87), doubles (25), and runs batted in (65) to go along with eight triples, four home runs, and 51 runs scored.
Diesel handled 66 defensive chances without an error, splitting time between left field, center field, and designated hitter.
"Coming into to this season, knowing it was going to be my last one as a Golden Falcon, I wanted to go out on a high note," Diesel said. "I put in a lot of work in the off-season, which helped lead to my success."
A three-time All-CACC and two-time First Team All-Region selection, Diesel is Felician's all-time leader in triples (25). He ranks second in school annals in career hits (231), runs (161) and RBI (154).
Diesel advances to the national ballot for each organization's Player of the Year award and All-America team.
The NCAA Division II East Region consists of the CACC, East Coast Conference, and Northeast 10 Conference, totaling 34 baseball-playing institutions.
Felician University, the Franciscan University of New Jersey, is a liberal arts, coeducational Catholic university founded in 1942 and sponsored by the Felician Sisters. True to its mission, Felician University welcomes a diverse student population and embraces its educational needs. With campuses in Lodi and Rutherford, New Jersey, Felician University currently enrolls more than 2,400 students and offers more than 55 undergraduate and graduate programs, in the classroom and online, in the arts and sciences, business and management sciences, health sciences and teacher education. Felician University also sponsors 14 varsity intercollegiate sports that compete at the NCAA Division II level.