Worcester, Mass. – After a dominating sophomore campaign, Clark University star hurler Cal Slepkow (Rehoboth, Mass.) has been named the 2017 Worcester Area Pitcher of the Year it was announced on Wednesday afternoon after a vote of the area Sports Information Directors.
In addition to the major honor, Slepkow collects first-team honors ad does teammates Kyle Bonicki (Waterbury, Conn.) and Teddy Downing (Cambridge, Mass.), while Adam Chochrek (Foxboro, Mass.) garners second-team accolades.
For Slepkow the award comes after earning 2017 NEWMAC Pitcher of the Year honors in a season in while he went 6-1 overall with a 2.70 ERA. He tossed 66.2 innings, finishing up with 52 strikeouts and only 13 walks and held opponents to just a .247 batting average.
A 2016 All-Worcester Second-Team selection, his best performance in 2017 might have come against West Division rival WPI, where he went the distance, shutting out the league's best hitting team and holding them to just four hits in a complete game shutout.
In addition to that showing, he struck out a career-high ten batters in eight innings of work in a no-decision against Emerson and also had eight strikeouts in eight innings in a win over Coast Guard.
So far in his career, Slepkow is 10-2 overall with a 3.06 ERA and 105 strikeouts in 123.1 innings pitched.
The honors continue to roll in for Bonicki who was named New England Player of the Year and first-team by D3Baseball and first-team all-region by the American Baseball Coaches Association on Tuesday.
All those awards come on the heels of his second straight first-team all-conference selection and now his second consecutive First-Team Worcester All-Star nod.
Bonicki finished the year ranked in the top ten in the NEWMAC in several statistical, including batting .391 (4th), scoring 50 runs (3rd), collecting 61 hits (3rd), smacking 20 doubles (1st), legging out seven triples (1st), swiping 12 bases (5th), posting an on-base percentage of .462 (5th) and a slugging percentage of .686 (3rd).
He had at least one hit in 33 of the 39 games this season, recorded 20 multi-hit games and had four separate hitting streaks of seven games or more.
In addition to those incredible numbers, Bonicki set single season school records in doubles (20), runs scored (50), at-bats (156) and total bases (107).
Downing grabbed first-team honors at the utility spot after emerging as one of the region's most versatile players during a breakout campaign, where he earned first-team all-conference honors from the NEWMAC and was named the Clark University Male Cougar of the Year.
He was spectacular from start to finish emerging as the most versatile player in the league while helping the Scarlet and White to a school-record 26 victories and their first postseason berth since 2010.
At the plate, he hit a team-best .411 and collected 62 hits – both good for second in the league - and had 20 games with multiple hits and an 11-game hitting streak in the middle of the season.
In addition to those numbers, Downing ranked third in the league in triples (4), fourth in on-base percentage (.480), ninth in stolen bases (11) and in tenth in runs scored (32).
Earlier in the season he eclipsed the 100 career hit mark and already ranks in the program's top ten with 115 all-time.
On the mound, Downing was just as dominant, finishing the season with a school-record six saves and a 1.98 ERA. He tossed 13.2 innings while striking out 25 batters and holding his opponents to a .160 batting average.
Chochrek, meanwhile snags second-team honors after capping off his collegiate career in style, blasting a school-record seven homeruns and driving in a school-record setting 47 runs – both totals ranking in the top six of the league standings.
During the year Chochrek had several monster performances, including a 3-for-5, two homerun game against Rivier, a 4-for-4, four runs scored game in a win over MIT and a 5-for-5, four runs scored, five RBI showing in a win at Springfield.
Not just a power bat, Chochrek hit .333 this season and eclipsed the 100 career hit barrier and finishes his career ranked fifth on the school's all-time hits list (135).
In addition, he ranks first in games played (133), third in at-bats (441), fourth in doubles (29), fourth in total bases (205) and eighth in runs scored (75). His career totals of 13 homeruns and 90 RBI both rank second in school history.