LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. -- The 2019 ABCA/Rawlings NCAA Div. III All-Region teams and Regional Players of the Year have been announced and the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference placed seven student-athletes on the list.
Austin College senior shortstop Brett Taff was the only SCAC student-athlete to earn First Team All-Region honors. Junior third baseman Daniel Montgomery, Jr. of Southwestern University, junior outfielder Tyler Cauley of Texas Lutheran University, senior outfielder Jake Martin of Trinity University and sophomore starting pitcher Austin Smith of Southwestern each earned Second Team recognition while junior designated hitter Byron Dowdell II of Southwestern and sophomore relief pitcher Corey Cater of Trinity were Third Team honorees.
Taff, a senior shortstop from Amarillo, led the SCAC with a .413 batting average on his way to being named first team All-Conference. He also paced the SCAC with a .503 on-base percentage and a .686 slugging percentage. Taff had 11 doubles, two triples, and six home runs and drove in 33 runs on the year while scoring 38 more. He was also among the SCAC leaders with 13 stolen bases, and boasted a .969 fielding percentage with just five errors in 33 games played. Last week, he was named First Team All-West Region by D3baseball.com.
Montgomery Jr., a junior third baseman from Boling, Texas, had 60 hits this season on a .364 batting average, scoring 48 runs and driving in 45 RBI. He led the SCAC in home runs with nine and produced 15 doubles, four triples, and 10 stolen bases, finishing with 110 total bases. In an earlier release, Montgomery Jr. was named to the D3Baseball.com All-America Second Team, continuing a run of postseason accolades that include All-SCAC First Team and D3Baseball.com All-Region honors.
Cauley, a junior outfielder from Mont Belvieu, Texas, led TLU in nearly every offensive category in 2019. He hit .329 with eight home runs, four triples, 10 doubles and 47 RBI. He was the team-leader or tied for the team lead in doubles, triples, home runs and RBI, and he led the team in stolen bases with 16. He did not have a caught-stealing. Cauley, who was an ABCA and D3baseball.com Third Team All-American a season ago, was also recognized by D3baseball.com as a Second Team All-Region performer.
Martin, a senior from Edmond, Okla., was second on Trinity's team with a .343 batting average and led the Tigers with 72 hits and 45 runs scored. Martin also posted a team high of 15 doubles and tied for the lead with seven home runs. The 2019 SCAC Player of the Year and an All-SCAC First Team selection, Martin was also selected for the D3baseball.com All-West Region Second Team.
Smith, a sophomore right-hander from Cedar Park, Texas, was named the 2019 SCAC Pitcher of the Year after compiling a 7-2 record and finishing 13th in Division III in strikeouts per nine innings with 12.48 and sixth in total strikeouts with 110, leading the SCAC in both categories. In addition to earning All-SCAC First Team honors, Smith was also a recent D3baseball.com Third Team All-West Region selection.
Dowdell, a junior outfielder and designated hitter from Sugar Land, Texas, picked up ABCA All-West Region Third Team honors after earning the same recognition by D3baseball.com a week ago. Dowdell finished the regular season tied with Montgomery for the SCAC lead with nine home runs and led the conference outright in RBI (47) while batting .320 with a .547 slugging percentage and 35 runs scored.
Cater, a sophomore right-hander from Sacramento, Calif., led the Tigers with a 2.43 ERA over 74.0 innings on the mound and paced the team with 71 strikeouts. He chalked up a 7-3 record and posted a team-best five saves in earning All-SCAC First Team honors.
To see the full ABCA release, click here.