May 20, 2014
OMAHA, Neb. -- Five University of Iowa baseball juniors -- Jake Yacinich, Nick Day, Jake Mangler, Eric Toole and Dan Potempa -- garnered All-Big Ten recognition for the 2014 season, the Big Ten office announced Tuesday. The five honorees are the most for the Hawkeyes since 2007.
Yacinich became the first Iowa player since Ryan Durant in 2009 to garner first-team accolades after ranking in the top-five in seven Big Ten categories. The Des Moines, Iowa, native currently ranks second in the conference in steals (24), batting average (.369), hits (73), and triples (4), while being fourth in runs (43) and on-base percentage (.442).
The shortstop has started 49-of-50 games this season, where he is tied for the team lead with 22 multi-hit contests. Yacinich has converted 24-of-27 steal attempts, which are tied for the 13th-most in a single season in Iowa history.
Mangler garnered second-team honors after enjoying a breakout junior season. The second-baseman is hitting .330 as Iowa's two-hole hitter, leading the team with a career-high 44 RBIs -- the most by a Hawkeye since 2010 and the fourth-most in the Big Ten. The Clinton, Iowa, native has 20 multi-hit games and a team-best 13 multi-RBI contests. Mangler, who has reached base in each of the last 29 games, has been superb defensively, committing four errors in 239 chances for a .983 fielding percentage.
Day earned a second-team nod after being a run-scoring machine for the Hawkeyes out of the nine spot in the lineup. The third-baseman finished the regular season with a career-high .298 batting average with 36 runs and 18 RBIs, while posting 10 multi-hit games, including three three-hit contests. The Solon, Iowa, native scored at least one run in 12-straight games from March 29-April 15 and finished with a team-high 14 hit-by-pitches.
Toole was named third-team All-Big Ten after hitting .310 with a career-high 65 hits and 14 steals as a junior. The Council Bluffs, Iowa, native posted career-bests in extra base hits with nine doubles and three triples and ranked third in the league in runs (47) and tied for eighth in steals (14). The outfielder is also tied for the team lead with 22 multi-hit games. Toole was a second-team All-Big Ten selection as a sophomore.
Potempa also garnered third-team recognition as a designated hitter after posting a .325 batting average with 38 RBIs -- the second-most on the team and eighth-most in the Big Ten -- and 15 runs in his first year as a Hawkeye. The Tinley Park, Illinois, native had a team-best 12 doubles and finished with three home runs during the regular season, while slugging .452 and reaching at a .416 clip. He had 15 multi-hit and 10 multi-RBI contests.
It is the first career All-Big Ten recognition for Yacinich, Mangler, Day and Potempa.
Sophomore relief pitcher Jared Mandel was selected as Iowa baseball's Big Ten Sportsmanship Award honoree. The distinction is presented to student-athletes who display sportsmanship and ethical behavior, are in good academic standing and demonstrate good citizenship outside of athletics.
The eighth-seeded Hawkeyes return to action Wednesday, squaring off against top-seeded Indiana in the opening round of the Big Ten Tournament. Game time is set for 5 p.m. (CT) at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha. The game will be televised live on BTN.