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Miami Dade College wins Southern Conference Title

baseball_team_spring_09Miami, April 20, 2009 – Miami Dade College’s (MDC) baseball team is once again in the spotlight. On Apr. 17, the Sharks captured a third consecutive, and seventh in nine years, Southern Conference Championship with a 6-2 win over Indian River State College.

The Sharks ranked number five in the nation with a 37-7 record will now compete at the Florida Community College/Atlantic District tournament on May 7 – 11 in Lakeland, Fla. The winner of the tournament qualifies for the 2009 JUCO World Series event in Colorado.

“Winning the Southern Conference Championship was this team’s first goal for the season,” said MDC Athletics Director James Cox. “The students are very excited and now they are looking forward to the opportunity to realize the next goal of winning the state championship.”

MDC Sharks are third in the nation and lead Florida with a .379 batting average. Some of the top players include Mycal Jones with a .485 batting average, 11 homeruns and 23 stolen bases. Also, David Vidal with 51 runs batted and hitting at a .411 average, as well as Chris Pelaez, who leads the state in stolen bases with 34 and his hitting at a .423 average.

This year’s team joins five decades of rich MDC baseball history, including former big-league names, such as Mike Piazza, Bucky Dent and Alex Fernandez, and current Major Leaguers Raul Ibanez, Kiko Calero, Jonathan Abaladejo, and Placido Polanco, among other greats.

The baseball team’s recent win also makes it a sweep for MDC teams in all five sports – volleyball, women’s basketball, men’s basketball, baseball, and softball – qualifying for post-season play this academic year, with three of the five teams winning Southern Conference Championships.

This is the second time in the history of the Sharks program that all five teams qualified for post-season play. In May, the Sharks softball team will compete for the District title in Auburndale, Fla.

“You can’t win, or be successful, without outstanding talent and our program is able to attract the best student athletes from the local areas, around the state, nation, and the world,” said Cox. “With that talent we are also very fortunate to have outstanding coaches that are able to mold and guide the talent into a formula for winning.”

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