In conjunction with the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) and Rawlings, the NJCAA Division III Baseball Committee named Colby Maiola of Northern Essex (Mass.) the ABCA/Rawlings NJCAA DIII Baseball Player of the Year on Tuesday.
Proving to be one of the best extra-base hitters at the DIII level, Maiola led the country with a .932 slugging percentage that was highlighted by seven triples – tying for fifth-most across the land. The sophomore added 12 doubles and tied for tenth in home runs with 10, while driving in 43 RBIs on the year. Beyond his power, Maiola displayed his efficiency at the plate with a .453 batting average and a .587 on-base percentage – the third-highest in the nation – and his speed on the base paths with 14 stolen bases.
A reliable asset in the outfield, Maiola fell victim to just one error in 66 chances this season for a .985 fielding percentage. He recorded 64 outs on fly balls from his spot in center field and even threw out one runner for a double play.
Maiola’s efforts in 2016 propelled Northern Essex (Mass.) to a 24-16 record and a title-game appearance at the NJCAA DIII Baseball World Series. Posting a .400 batting average with two doubles, a triple, three RBIs and four stolen bases at the championship, Maiola earned a spot on the all-tournament team.
Prior to advancing to the national tournament, Maiola enjoyed one of his best collegiate performances with the Knights’ 8-0 win over Massasoit (Mass.) in the NJCAA District H Championship Game. On a 4-for-5 day at the plate – the first four-hit game of his career – Maiola tallied two doubles, a home run and drove in two runs while scoring three of his own.
A native of North Reading, Massachusetts, Maiola intends to remain in the Bay State to finish out his collegiate playing career by moving on to UMass Lowell at the NCAA DI level next season.
About the ABCA
The ABCA, founded in 1945, is the primary professional organization for baseball coaches at the amateur level. Its over 8,200 members represent all 50 states and 23 countries. Since its initial meeting of 27 college baseball coaches in June 1945, Association membership has broadened to include eight divisions: NCAA Division I, II and III, NAIA, NJCAA, Pacific Association Division, High School and Youth. The 73rd annual ABCA Convention will be held Jan. 5-8, 2017 in Anaheim, California.
About Rawlings Sporting Goods Company
Rawlings Sporting Goods Company, Inc. is an innovative manufacturer and marketer of sporting goods worldwide. Founded in 1887, Rawlings is an authentic global sports brand, trusted by generations of athletes of all skill levels. Rawlings' unparalleled quality, innovative engineering and expert craftsmanship are the fundamental reasons why more professional athletes, national governing bodies and sports leagues choose Rawlings. Rawlings is the Official Ball Supplier and Batting Helmet of Major League Baseball®, the official baseball of Minor League Baseball™ and the NCAA®, and the approved baseball, basketball, football and softball of the National High School Federation®. For more information, please visit Rawlings.com or by phone at (314) 819-2800.