BAY CITY, Mich. – Lake Erie first baseman/outfielder Lucas Raley has been named 2014 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year.
The honor, awarded via a vote of the GLIAC's 12 head coaches, comes at the tail end of a season that has seen the 6-foot-3 freshman slugger pile up big numbers. Through May 7, Raley is batting .365 (58-of-159) with 10 doubles, one triple, nine home runs and 38 RBIs. He ranks in the league's top-10 in numerous categories including batting average (ninth), home runs (second) and slugging percentage (second). The Hinckley, Ohio, native was twice decorated as the GLIAC Player of the Week during the regular season, and his exploits with the bat, in the field and on the base paths have helped lead Lake Erie to a program record for wins (28) in a year that has the Storm headed to the GLIAC Tournament as a No. 3 seed.
Splitting time at first base and in left and center field, the versatile newcomer has been a standout defensive player for Lake Erie, and his speed has resulted in seven stolen bases and multiple "singles turned into doubles." Raley's bat has come through often in clutch situations: when leading off an inning, he owns a .513 on-base percentage and he has logged a .432 (16-of-37) batting average with runners in scoring position.
The circuit's freshman of the year has been spectacular in conference games. Raley batted .410/.470/.675 (batting/on-base/slugging) in 33 GLIAC games. Since April 12, he is batting .441 (26-of-59) with nine extra-base hits and 20 RBIs.
In addition to being tabbed as the league's top freshman, Raley was named a first team outfielder on the All-GLIAC Team. He is the only freshman on the 16-man team.
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