FORT MYERS, Fla. – The three-time Atlantic Sun Conference regular season champion Florida Gulf Coast baseball program, and head coach David Tollett, announced its first seven signees for its 2013 signing class on Thursday afternoon.
The 2013 class features two junior college transfers and five high school players, including pitcher Jake Hansen (Ft. Macleod, Calif./F.P. Walshe HS/Pensacola State College), catcher Blake Berger (Jacksonville, Fla./Mandarin HS/Santa Fe College), infielder Chase Turner (Odessa, Fla./Steinbrenner HS), pitcher Mario Leon (Naples, Fla./Gulf Coast HS), catcher Kalam (KK) Daniel (St. Johns, Fla./Bishop Kenny HS), infielder Sterling Koerner (Fort Pierce, Fla./John Carroll Catholic HS) and outfielder Gage Morey (Wellington, Fla./Palm Beach Central HS).
“Recruiting coordinator Rusty McKee, and the rest of our staff, have done another outstanding job of putting together a very talented and complete recruiting class,” coach Tollett said. “I have high hopes for this class and I feel that every single one of these players has the ability to come in and contribute right away.”
Hansen pitched 56.2 innings, going 4-2, with a 3.97 ERA last season for Pensacola State College. He went on to strike out 48 batters, while only walking 18. He was selected 912th overall in the 30th round of the 2011 First Year MLB Draft by the New York Mets. Hansen also played with the Canadian Junior National Team in high school.
Berger batted .235 with 16 hits, 10 runs scored and 10 RBI last season for Santa Fe College. He originally committed to, and attended, the University of Tennessee coming out of high school in 2010-11. Berger was also named to the 2010 Rawlings/Perfect Game Preseason Florida All-Region second team.
Turner hit .354 with 17 runs scored, five doubles and nine RBI in 87 plate appearances last season as a junior for Steinbrenner High School. He is currently ranked 30th in the state of Florida and 240th nationally by MaxPreps.com. Turner also won the 2011 Rookie of the Year award at Steinbrenner.
Leon had a dominant junior season at Gulf Coast High School as he pitched 51 innings, only allowing 36 hits, with a 1.78 ERA. He had 52 strikeouts, with only 17 walks, while finishing with a .174 opponent batting average. Leon was also named as a 2012 Perfect Game USA Preseason HS Underclassmen All-American honorable mention.
Daniel had a stellar junior campaign at Bishop Kenny High School as he put up some gaudy numbers hitting .416 with 12 doubles, four homeruns and 28 RBI. He also was named a 2012 Perfect Game USA Preseason HS Underclassmen All-American high honorable mention.
Koerner pitched 69.2 innings, going 7-3, with a 1.81 ERA in his junior year at John Carroll High School. He struck out 58, while walking only eight batters. Koerner was also named a 2012 Perfect Game USA Preseason HS Underclassmen All-American honorable mention. He went on to hit .298 with 23 hits, six doubles and 28 RBI in 77 plate appearances last season as well.
Morey was solid in his junior year at Palm Beach Central High School as he finished with a .342 batting average, 27 hits, 24 runs scored and 14 RBI in 79 plate appearances. For his efforts he was honored as an All-Area honorable mention and a 2012 Perfect Game USA Preseason HS Underclassmen All-American honorable mention.
The Blue and Green will get the 2013 season underway on Feb. 15 in Sarasota, Fla. when they take on St. John’s as part of the Snowbird Baseball Classic. First pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m. The Eagles return 18 student-athletes, including eight position starters and two starting pitchers, from a season ago. Fans can get updates and information on FGCU baseball all season long by visiting www.FGCUATHLETICS.com or following the team on twitter @FGCU_Baseball.