Kulbacki and Bach earn National Player of the Week honor

FROM NCBWA RELEASE
DALLAS - The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA)­ released the Pro-Line Athletic National Player of the Week awards for the period ending April 17, today. James Madison senior outfielder Kellen Kulbacki was named National Hitter of the Week, while Monmouth junior right-handed pitcher Brad Brach was named National Co-Pitchers of the Week. The NCBWA Board reviews candidates from each Division I conferences each week and names winners each Tuesday throughout the season.

Kulbacki went 11-for-16 (.688) last week with five walks to reach base in 16 of 21 plate appearances (.762 on-base percentage). He hit four home runs in four games, including his third multiple-home run game of the season, and added three doubles for 26 total bases and a 1.625 slugging percentage. He also scored 10 runs, drove in 11, and stole a base. Kulbacki's week included a span of six consecutive at bats with base hits and eight consecutive plate appearances reaching base. He had multiple hits in each of the four games and nine total bases on Wednesday and Friday.

Brach hurled the NEC's first no-hitter in nearly three years on Friday in a 2-0 win over visiting Long Island. The Freehold, N.J., native was perfect through eight and a third innings, allowed a walk with one out in the ninth on a 3-2 pitch for his only blemish. Brach, who led the conference in ERA a year ago, struck out six and improved to 4-1 on the season with a 3.21 ERA following his second straight nine-inning, complete game effort. It marked the first no-hitter in the NEC since Long Island's John Dooley and freshman Ryan Ekberg combined to no-hit Fairleigh Dickinson, 4-0, on April 29, 2004. The last no-hitter by an NEC pitcher in a solo effort came on April 27, 2002 when Sacred Heart's Dan Scott stymied Long Island, 2-0. The gem was also the first for a Monmouth pitcher since Glenn Spencer turned the trick against Mount St. Mary's in 1990.

With this week's honor, Brach automatically are named to the watch list for Roger Clemens Award, given to the national collegiate pitcher of the year, sponsored by the Greater Houston Baseball Organization.