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NCBWA 2017 Stopper Of The Year Preseason Watch List
GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- Ohio baseball redshirt junior right-handed pitcher Jake Roehn (Sandwich, Ill.) has been named to the 2017 Stopper of the Year Preseason Watch List, as announced by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association on Monday (Feb. 13).
The Stopper of the Year Award is given to the top relief pitcher In NCAA Division I baseball. Roehn is one of 60 players across the country to be named to the preseason watch list and is the lone representative from the Mid-American Conference.
Roehn sported a team-best 2.18 ERA and led the Bobcats with seven saves in 2016 after missing the '15 campaign due to an injury. He fanned 43 over 23 appearances and 45.1 innings of work while surrendering just 11 earned runs on 42 hits and nine walks. His seven saves in 2016 tie him with Doug Stackhouse (1983) for the fourth-most in a single season in program history.
Texas hurler J. Brent Cox won the inaugural Stopper of the Year Award in 2005, with Don Czyz of Kansas claiming the honor in 2006 and Luke Prihoda of Sam Houston State winning it in 2007. Georgia's Joshua Fields topped the field in 2008, San Diego State's Addison Reed grabbed the honor in 2009 and Texas' Chance Ruffin earned the honor in 2010. The Longhorns' Corey Knebel won in 2011, with Southeastern Louisiana's Stefan Lopez picking up the honor in 2012. UCLA's David Berg was crowned the winner in 2013, Louisville's Nick Burdi took home the 2014 honor and Berg became the award's first two-time winner in 2015. Miami (Fla.)'s Bryan Garcia was honored as the 2016 recipient.
The NCBWA, founded in 1962, presents the Dick Howser Trophy to the nation's top player. It also selects All-America Teams for all Divisions, a Division I Freshman All-American team, Division I, II and III Players of the Week and Division I, II and III Players of the Year.
Under fifth-year head coach Rob Smith, the Bobcats returns 26 players from 2016's 23-win team, including Roehn, senior infielder Ty Black (Waynesville, Ohio), senior right-handed pitcher Jake Rudnicki (Toledo, Ohio) and sophomore infielder/catcher Rudy Rott (Holmen, Wis.), who was named to the 2016 Louisville Slugger Freshmen All-American Team as a first baseman as selected by Collegiate Baseball newspaper. The Bobcats welcome 11 new faces to their 2017 roster.
Ohio opens the 2017 campaign this weekend in Lexington, S.C. The Bobcats are set to open the season on Friday (Feb. 17) with a 5 p.m. ET matchup against La Salle. Ohio will take on the Explorers again on Saturday (Feb. 18) at 11 a.m. ET before taking on Butler at 3 p.m. ET. The Bobcats will close out the weekend on Sunday (Feb. 19) with a 1 p.m. ET matchup against the Bulldogs.