The Golden Eagles Senior-Laden Squad Reach Ninth Consecutive NCAA Regional
It was déjà vu for the 2011 Southern Miss baseball team as
they returned to the site that started
their first-ever run to the College
World Series just two years before.
With its 7-3 decision over Rice
in Hattiesburg on the final day of
the regular season, Southern Miss
captured a share of the Conference
USA regular-season title. It was
their second C-USA regular-season
championship and first since 2003,
propelling top man Scott Berry to the league’s
Coach of the Year honors. He was the first sec-ond-year Golden Eagle coach to ever register that
award on the strength of finishing 39-19 during
the year as the school reached their ninth consecutive postseason appearance and 12th overall.
Behind Berry’s seven All-Conference USA
selections, the Golden Eagles collected at least
five wins in a row on five separate occasions during the campaign, including a season-best seven-game winning streak during mid-March.
Their strong showing throughout the season got
them in the talks for potentially hosting a regional,
but Southern Miss returned to Russ Chandler
Stadium for the second time in three years.
Tyler Koelling led the way for the Golden
Eagles as the school’s first-ever winner of the Boo
Ferris Trophy for the top collegiate baseball player
in the state of Mississippi. Koelling beat out teammate, B.A. Vollmuth and Mississippi State’s Jarrod
Parks, the other two finalists, for the trophy which
was awarded May 23. The Luling, La., native
paced the team in hitting with a .362 batting average to go along with a team-best 18 doubles and
46 runs batted in.
His offensive numbers also included a triple
and four home runs. In league play, he hit .370
with 11 doubles, three home runs and 25 RBI.
Koelling was one of the toughest to strikeout in
the country this season as he ranked nationally in
the Top 10 with just nine on the year.
Koelling was one of five seniors that registered
All-Conference USA honors. Fifth-year senior and
right-handed pitcher Todd McInnis was awarded the
league’s Pitcher of the Year, as well as All-American
honors, on the strength of a 8-3 record to go along
with a 2. 65 earned run average. He fanned 87 over
98 2/3 innings, including his first complete game of
his career, a 6-1 victory over Tulane in the opening
game of the C-USA Tournament in Pearl.
The other first-teamers for Southern Miss were
the junior infielder Vollmuth, along with outfielder
Marc Bourgeois and starting right-handed pitcher
Geoffrey Thomas. Senior first baseman Adam Doleac and senior right-handed closer Collin Cargill earned
second team honors. Catcher Jared
Bales made the All-Freshman Team.
Vollmuth led the Golden Eagles
in both homers ( 12) and RBI ( 49)
to go along with a .301 batting
average, while Bourgeois hit .358
with seven home runs and 38 RBI.
Thomas posted a 10-3 mark with a
3.09 ERA in 14 starts.
Doleac added a .335 batting average with a
pair of homers and 39 RBI while Collin Cargill
added a 6-4 pitching record with eight saves to
become the school’s all-time leader in the category with 30.
Bourgeois added to his awards off the field
as well as he was chosen to the 2011 Capital
One Academic All-America® Baseball First Team
as designated hitter, as selected by the College
Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
Bourgeois was the ninth different Southern Miss
baseball student-athlete to be honored with this
award since its first selection in 1991, and was
the seventh overall first-team selection for the program. Bourgeois, who has played both in the outfield and at the designated hitter spot, held a 3. 82
grade point average in Construction Engineering.
Fellow seniors, McInnis and Doleac, were named
to the All-District Academic First Team.
The threesome also garnered C-USA All-
Academic Team honors as the Golden Eagles had
the most recipients of any school to capture this
accolade. Since the inception of the All-Academic
team in 2007, the Golden Eagles have been honored 11 times and this is the second time that the
program has posted three players on the team.
The other year was 2008.
The Golden Eagles used their experience and
solid hitting, pitching and defense to post a 37-11
record through May 13, but the Golden Eagles
behind the suspension of weekend starting pitchers
Thomas and Jonathan Thompson for the remainder
of the season due to academic and injuries down
the stretch to both Koelling and Doleac, the Golden
Eagles lost eight of their final 10 of the season.
It was off to Atlanta for the postseason and,
unfortunately for the Golden Eagles, the results
weren’t as special as they had been during 2009.
In meeting Mississippi State in the opener of the
event, the two schools met for the first time in the
postseason and the Bulldogs posted a 3-0 decision over Southern Miss. The Golden Eagles then
lost to the Yellow Jackets the following day 6-2 to
complete their season.
Despite the disappointing finish to the season,
Southern Miss enjoyed one of the better runs
over and finished with at least 39 victories for
the eighth time in the last nine campaigns. For
the third straight season, Southern Miss reached
the 80-plateau in double plays finishing the 2011
campaign with 81 and leading the nation for the
third consecutive year.
First Row (L-R): student trainer Danielle Jones, Justin Diliberto, Chase Horn, Isaac Rodriguez, Andrew Furr,
Michael Sterling, Joe Martin, Jay Myrick, Taylor Eads, student equipment manager Brett McIntyre.
Second Row (L-Rt): student athletic trainer Brittney Moore, Chase Fowler, Jonathan Thompson, Dillon Day,
James McMahon, Austin Roussel, Ashley Graeter, Marc Bourgeois, Collin Cargill, student equipment manager Lackey
Simon. Third Row (L-R): student trainer Neal Tice, Pamela Workman ATC, Mark Ellis, Todd McInnis, assistant coach
Michael Federico, assistant coach Richy Harrelson, head coach Scott Berry, assistant coach Chad Caillet, Travis Creel,
Paxton King, Tyler Koelling, Kameron Brunty, Josh Rogers, director of baseball operations Michael Shields.
Fourth Row (Left to Right): Boomer Scarborough, Seth Hester, Jared Bales, Josh Thomason, Matt Warren,
Adam Doleac, Jake Drehoff, B.A. Vollmuth, Geoffrey Thomas, Jackson Posey, Matthew Shaw.