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Baseball Announces 2011-12 Recruiting Class
 
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Head Coach Billy Godwin announces 2011-12 recruiting class.
 
Head Coach Billy Godwin announces 2011-12 recruiting class.
 
 

Nov. 12, 2010

2011-12 Recruiting Class Photo Gallery

GREENVILLE, N.C. - Three junior college players and 10 high school seniors have committed to play baseball at East Carolina University in 2012, head baseball coach Billy Godwin announced today. The latest group of standouts will enroll at ECU in the fall of 2011 and will take the diamond for the Pirates in 2012.

The class, which includes an AFLAC All-America and Under Armour All-America selection, is made up of seven pitchers (John Allen, Jharel Cotton, Dylan Dickens, Ryan Gupton, Jeff Hoffman, David Lucroy and Shawn Morimando); three two-way players (Tyler Bolton, Rookie Davis and Nick Thompson); two catchers (Geno Escalante and Cameron Gallagher) and an infielder/outfielder (Jay Cannon).

"Our coaching staff is extremely excited about this group of young men," said Godwin. "This recruiting class is deep in pitching. We have the chance to lose 75 percent of our innings in 2011. This group of pitchers will be expected to help us compete immediately when they step on campus in August.

"We added depth behind the plate and brought in guys that are athletic and can play multiple positions at a high level. Recruiting is about addressing your needs that will compliment the players returning. The talent in this class is as good as any we have assembled during my tenure at East Carolina. I look forward to working with these young men as they will strive to help the Pirates win championships and play in OMAHA."

John Allen - LHP - 6-4 - 180 - Kerr-Vance Academy (Creedmoor, N.C.)
Helped the Spartans to a three-year record of 67-19 including the 2010 2A EPIC state title under coach Dave Cline ... Earned eight varsity letters (baseball, cross country and soccer) ... Posted a 2.71 ERA as a freshman ... Named EPIC Co-Player-of-the-Year, EPIC All-Tournament and all-state honors as a sophomore after boasting an impressive 0.73 ERA on the hill ... As a junior sported a 1.13 ERA ... Took home EPIC All-Conference honors and was named team Most Valuable Player ... Teammate of fellow ECU signee Tyler Bolton ... Played travel baseball for Ricky Keith of the Carolina Cubs where he posted a 4-1 record with a 1.30 ERA ... Personal: Full name is John Thomas Allen ... Born October 5, 1992 ... Son of Ray and Vickie Allen ... Has one sibling (Elaine) ... Intended major is business administration.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "John is a quality left-handed pitcher. He is very good now and with his size and development, he has a chance to be a special guy before he leaves East Carolina."

Tyler Bolton - 3B/RHP - 6-4 - 195 - Kerr-Vance Academy (Wake Forest, N.C.)
Nine-time letterwinner for the Spartans (baseball/4, basketball/3 and soccer/2) ... Teammate of fellow ECU signee John Allen ... Helped the Spartans to a three-year record of 67-19 including the 2010 2A EPIC state title under coach Dave Cline ... Batted .341 with a home run and 20 RBI as a freshman ... Named to 2008 EPIC All-Tournament Team ... During sophomore season batted .469 (38-for-81) with eight home runs, six doubles and then a school-record 35 RBI ... Fanned just seven times in 81 at-bats ... Posted a 4.26 ERA on the mound ... Took home all-state and all-conference honors ... In 2010 set school-records for batting average (.604/67-for-111), home runs (18) and RBI (68) ... Roped 13 doubles and struck out just once in 111 at-bats ... On the mound posted an 8-2 record with one save ... Fanned 98 batters while walking 16 ... Allowed 14 earned runs in 57 innings with a sporting an impressive 1.72 ERA ... Earned EPIC Player-of-the-Year honors and was a repeat all-state and all-conference selection ... Played travel ball for Ricky Keith of the Carolina Cubs ... Member of the Henderson-Post-Kerr Lake American Legion squad under the direction of Tony McGhee ... National Honor Society ... Two-time Honor Roll member ... Personal: Full name is Tyler Wesley Bolton ... Born January 27, 1993 ... Son of Bill and Lisa Bolton ... Has two siblings (Whitney and Cale) ... Intended major is business management with a minor in marketing.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "Tyler has a quality fastball that has touched in the low 90's and he has a good curve ball. He also has a chance to swing the bat when not pitching."

Jay Cannon - INF - 6-1 - 186 - Brunswick Community College (Angier, N.C.)
Batted .331 (56-for-169) as a freshman ... Named second-team all-region after helping the Dolphins to a 34-17 record ... Smacked five home runs and drove in 35 RBI in 46 games played ... Scored 32 runs, roped six doubles and was a perfect 7-for-7 on the base paths ... Recorded a career-best four RBI against Potomac State College (2/28/10) ... Hit a home run in both games of the twin bill against Southeastern Community College-Whiteville (4/28/10) ... Collected 18 multi-hit games and four 3-hit contests ... Recorded 56 putouts and 108 assists at shortstop ... Played summer baseball for the Fayetteville Swampdogs of the Coastal Plain League ... Named started for the American All-Star squad ... Started 31 of 32 games played where he batted .364 (47-for-129) ... Hit two home runs, 12 doubles, two triples and drove in 18 RBI ... Slugged .535 and posted a .407 on-base percentage ... Swiped 10 of 14 bases ... Personal: Full name is Johnny Nazier Cannon, III ... Born August 31, 1990 ... Son of John Cannon and Stacie Benton ... Has three siblings (Amber, Blake and Paul) ... Intended major is history with a minor in political science ... Graduated from Harnett Central High School in 2009.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "Jay is a versatile and athletic player that can play both infield and outfield. He can really hit and has a chance to make an impact right away for us."

Jharel Cotton - RHP - 6-0 - 189 - Miami Dade College (St. Thomas, Virgin Islands)
Earned second-team All-Southern Conference honors as a freshman ... Posted a 4-2 record on the mound with a 2.77 ERA, which ranked third in the state ... Fanned 62 and walked 22 in 61.2 innings ... Allowed 24 runs, 19 earned in 11 games ... Played summer ball for the Peninsula Pilots of the Coastal Plain League ... Named CPL Rawlings Co-Pitcher-of-the-Week ... Posted a 3-2 record with a 3.33 ERA ... Started eight games ... Struck out 57 and walked 11 in 46.0 innings ... Allowed 18 runs (17 earned) ... Held opposing hitters to a .204 average ... Rated as the No. 18 CPL prospect by PG Crosschecker ... Turned down free agent contract by the Los Angeles Dodgers after successful summer for the Pilots to return to Miami Dade College ... Teamed up with current Pirate Austin Chrismon to lead Menchville HS to the 2009 National Championship (USA Today) and Virginia 3A state crown ... As a senior was named second-team Peninsula All-District ... On the mound he was 4-1 with two saves ... Started 4 of 15 games ... Posted an impressive 0.76 ERA allowing 18 hits in 36.2 innings ... Struck out 74 and walked 13 ... Held opposing batters to a .144 average ... Personal: Brother Jamaine was plays in the Houston Astros organization after being drafted in the 15th round of the 2010 Major League First-Year Player Draft.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "Jharel is a polished right-handed pitcher that has shown a fastball in the low 90's. His best pitch is a changeup, which is a plus pitch. He is a great competitor. With his experience he should come in and be a front line guy right away."

Rookie Davis - 1B/RHP - 6-5 - 225 - Dixon High School (Sneads Ferry, N.C.)
Named Under Armour All-American as a junior ... Led the Bulldogs to three-consecutive Coastal Plain Conference Championships, two-straight Touchstone Classic titles and the 2010 Eastern Regional crown ... Helped coach Jack Brown to a three-year record of 61-22 ... Earned three letters and was named team captain as a junior ... Three-time all-conference, all-area and all-state selection ... As a freshman batted .493 with three home runs and 38 RBI ... Followed that up with a .536 average with nine home runs and 36 RBI ... In 2010 smacked 14 round-trippers, batted .596 and drove in 58 ... On the mound was 13-4 with a 1.05 ERA ... Fanned 186 and walked 35 ... Named conference Player-of-the-Year, all-area Player-of-the-Year and NCHSAA 1A Player-of-the-Year ... Selected to participate in the East Coast Pro Showcase ... Listed as the 93rd-best senior prospect in the country and the fourth-best senior prospect in North Carolina by PGCrosschecker.com ... Played travel ball for Ricky Keith of the Carolina Cubs and Chad Raley of the Marucci Elite ... Personal: Full name is William Theron Davis, III ... Born April 29, 1993 ... Son of Billy and Lisa Davis ... Father played baseball and basketball at Louisburg College ... Has one sibling (Ayrien) ... Intended major is sports marketing with a minor in communications ... National Honor Society and Key Club member.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "Rookie is arguably one of the best two-way players in the country. He has shown a fastball up to 93 with a plus breaking ball. He is a disciplined right-handed hitter with power. Rookie will make a direct impact on our program as a pitcher and a middle of the lineup hitter."

Dylan Dickens - RHP - 6-0 - 200 - Person Senior High School (Roxboro, N.C.)
Helped the Rockets to 37 wins over the last three years under coach John Koket ... Three-time letterwinner and Pac 6 All-Conference selection ... During freshman season posted a 6-3 record with one save ... Fanned 55 and walked 16 in 56.0 innings allowing 12 earned runs with a 1.50 ERA ... Named 2009 Bobby Murray Tournament MVP as a sophomore ... Went 5-3 with two saves ... Allowed eight earned runs in 54.1 innings with 49 strike outs and 20 walks ... In 2010 posted a 6-7 record with one save ... Fanned a career-best 71 while walking a career-low 14 hitters ... Surrendered 15 earned runs in 68.1 innings ... Tossed complete game shutout (1-0) against FTB Mizuno Cardinals in the National Semi-Final game in Jupiter, Fla. at the World Wood Bat Championships ... Played travel ball for Andy Partin of the Dirtbags ... Personal: Full name is Dylan Dickens ... Born August 15, 1992 ... Son of Richard and Penny Dickens ... Has two siblings (Jordan and Christian) ... Intended major is education ...Honor Roll member
Coach Godwin's Comments: "Dylan will be a fan favorite and a candidate to be a closer right away. He is a fierce competitor that throws strikes. His side-arm delivery gives him tremendous deception as hitters don't take good swings off of him. He will be a great Pirate."

Geno Escalante - C - 5-11 - 205 - Chipola Junior College (Fairfield, Calif.)
Transferred to Chipola JC in the fall of 2010 from Cal State Fullerton ... Played 13 games (two starts) for the Titans in 2010 ... Batted .154 (2-for-13) with a RBI and one run scored ... First collegiate hit came at Pepperdine (5/12/10) in his first career start where he finished 2-for-4 with an RBI ... Was a four-year letterman at Rodriguez High School under coach Jason Chatham ... Helped lead the Mustangs to three-straight CIF postseason appearances ... Was a three-time All-Solano County League honoree earning MVP honors as a sophomore ... Led the team in hits (40) and doubles (11) while hitting .426 with five home runs and 29 RBI as a senior ... Hit .308 (3 HR, 21 RBI) and .411 (2 HR, 29 RBI) his junior and sophomore seasons, respectively ... Was listed as Baseball America's No. 31 high school prospect in 2008 ... Played with the Milwaukee Brewers Area Code Team ... Drafted in the 28th round by the Milwaukee Brewers in the 2009 MLB First-Year Player Draft ... Was also a football star for the Mustangs, lettering three times and earning All-Solano County League Offensive Player-of-the-Year honors as a running-back ... Personal: Full name is Eugene Escalante, III ... Born June 25, 1991 ... Son of Eugene and Marcie Escalante ... Has one sibling (Marissa) ... Intended major is business.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "Geno is an athletic and strong physical player. He will bring a great amount of experience with him, playing at one of the top junior college programs in the country (Chipola). Geno has a great feel for hitting and is a leader on the field."

Cameron Gallagher - C - 6-3 - 210 - Manheim Township High School (Lancaster, Pa.)
Earned AFLAC All-America honors in 2010 after batting .477 with 10 home runs, eight doubles and 27 RBI ... Three-year letterwinner ... Helped the Blue Streak and coach Bill Sassaman to a three-year record of 54-17, which included a pair of sectional championships (2008, 2010) ... Two-time team captain ... Named to three-straight all-section squads ... Two-time Lancaster Lebonan all-league honoree (2008, 2010) ... Batted .338 with 11 doubles and 17 RBI as a freshman ... During sophomore campaign hit .417 with four home runs, six doubles and 22 RBI ... As a junior was named conference Player-of-the-Year ... Participated in the East Coast Professional Showcase and Area Code Games ... Listed as the 37th-best senior prospect in the country and the second-best senior prospect in Pennsylvania by PGCrosschecker.com ... Played travel ball for Mick Chroninger and the Mid Atlantic Rookies ... Personal: Full name is Cameron Joseph Gallagher ... Born December 6, 1992 ... Son of Glenn and Gwen Gallagher ... Has one sibling (Austin) ... Father played baseball and football at Clemson University and was drafted in the third round by the Toronto Blue Jays in 1981 ... Brother was drafted in the third round by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2007 ... Intended major is business.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "Cam is undoubtedly one of the top high school catchers in the country. He has physical ability and will bring everything with him from a tools standpoint to be an everyday guy. Offensively, he is a middle of the lineup type of bat."

Ryan Gupton - RHP - 6-4 - 190 - D.H. Conley (Winterville, N.C.)
Two-year letterwinner for coach Jason Mills ... Named Vikings Most Outstanding Pitcher as a junior ... Sported a 2.66 ERA as a sophomore with a 6-4 record in 10 starts ... Struck out 84 and walked 27 in 50.0 innings of work ... Fanned 10-or more hitters five times with a career-best 12 against Havelock and Washington ... During junior campaign was named first-team all-conference after boasting an impressive 2.08 ERA ... Was 6-5 on the season with 92 strikeouts and 27 walks ... Started 11 of 14 games ... Allowed 54 hits and 43 runs (21 earned) in 70.2 innings ... Held opposing hitters to a .200 average ... Played travel ball for Andy Partin and the Dirtbags ... Personal: Full name is Ryan Edward Gupton ... Born November 18, 1992 ... Son of Eddie and Charlotte Gupton ... Has one sibling (Scott) ... Intended major is undecided.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "Ryan is a right-handed pitcher with three quality pitches, including an outstanding breaking ball. He has a tremendous upside and a great amount of projectability at this level."

Jeff Hoffman - RHP - 6-4 - 165 - Shaker High School (Latham, N.Y.)
Four-year lettermen (baseball/2, basketball/2) ... Named team captain as a junior for coach Steve Frank ... Helped the Blue Bison to a 15-5 record as a junior ... First-team All-Suburban Council selection after posting a 7-0 record on the mound ... Struck out 26 and walked five in 34.0 innings of work with a 2.06 ERA ... Received the Justin Perry Courage Award on the diamond ... Named 2009-10 Most Improved Player on the basketball court ... Played travel ball for Bill Carroll and the Greenbush Devilcats posting a 4-2 record with an 0.81 ERA ... Fanned 49 while walking just seven in 39.0 innings ... Personal: Full name is Jeffrey Robert Hoffman ... Born January 8, 1993 ... Son of Jeff and Michele Hoffman ... Has two siblings (Arianna and Tyler) ... Intended major is physical education.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "Jeff is a high level right-handed pitcher with a fastball that tops out in the low 90's and a great feel for a quality breaking ball and change-up. He is a great competitor and has a tremendous amount of potential. Jeff has a chance to pitch right away as a freshman."

David Lucroy - RHP - 6-3 - 205 - Umatilla High School (Umatilla, Fla.)
Four-year letterwinner for the Bulldogs ... Named team captain as a junior for coach Keith Walsh ... Has posted a 10-5 overall record on the mound ... As a sophomore was 3-3 with a 3.95 ERA in 11 games ... Struck out 33 and walked eight in 23.0 innings ... In 2010 went 7-2 with a 2.12 ERA in 11 outings ... Posted a 4.4 to 1 strikeout to walk ratio (84 Ks, 19 walks) in 56.0 innings ... Played travel ball for Sal Lombardo and the Orlando Scorpions ... Member of three championship squads (16U USA, 16U Perfect Game BCS and 17U Perfect Game World Wood Bat) ... Participated in East Coast Professional and Florida Diamond Club Showcases ... Posted a 6-1 ledger with a 2.62 ERA in 33.0 innings ... Fanned 51 and walked 19 and helped the Scorpions to a 30-8 overall record ... Listed as the 372nd-best senior prospect in the country and the 45th-best senior prospect in Florida by PGCrosschecker.com ... Personal: Full name is David Aaron Lucroy ... Born September 3, 1992 ... Son of Steve and Karen Lucroy ... Has two siblings (Jonathan and Matthew) ... Brother Jonathan played college baseball at Louisiana-Lafayette and was drafted in the third round by the Milwaukee Brewers in 2007 ... Made Major League Debut on May 21 in Minnesota ... Intended major is political science with a minor in business.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "David is another outstanding talent from state of Florida. He has three above average pitches, a sinking fastball and is a strike throwing machine. His fastball has topped out in the low 90's and he should compete for innings right away as a freshman."

Shawn Morimando - LHP - 6-0 - 173 - Ocean Lakes High School (Virginia Beach, Va.)
Four-year lettermen for the Dolphins ... Named team captain as a junior for coach Gary Spedden ... Helped the Dolphins to a 47-23 three-year record, which included a pair of Beach District Tournament crowns (2008, 2010) and a regular season district title (2010) ... As a freshman posted a 1-1 record on the mound ... Followed that with a 1-2 ledger during sophomore campaign ... In 2010 he was 9-1 on the mound with a 2.07 ERA ... Fanned 76 batters in 57.0 innings of work ... At the plate batted .456 with four home runs, 31 RBI and scored 25 runs ... Named Beach District and Eastern Regional Player-of-the-Year, first-team all-district, All-Eastern Region and All-Tidewater ... Honorable mention all-state ... Participated in the East Coast Pro Showcase ... Listed as the 247th-best senior prospect in the country and the seventh-best senior prospect in Virginia by PGCrosschecker.com ... Played travel ball for Lee Banks and the Tidewater Orioles ... Personal: Full name is Shawn Peter Morimando ... Born November 20, 1992 ... Son of Frank Morimando and Teressa Van Bortel ... Has one sibling (Jessica) ... Three-year honor roll student ... Intended major is sports studies with a minor in communications.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "Shawn is a polished left-handed pitcher and is arguably one of the best left-handers in Virginia and on the East Coast. He has the ability to make an impact in our program right away."

Nick Thompson - INF/RHP - 6-1 - 195 - Western Branch High School (Chesapeake, Va.)
Five-time letterwinner (baseball/3, swimming/2) ... Helped the Bruins to a 54-20 three-year record under coach Roland Wright ... Owns a 24-5 three-year record on the mound including a perfect 5-0 ledger in post-season play ... One win shy of tying the school-record for career wins (25-record) ... Tossed 13 career complete games where he owns an 11-2 record ... Led the Bruins to the 2008 Southeastern District regular season and 2009 tournament titles ... Member of the 2010 Eastern Regional Championship squad that went to the Virginia 3A state semi-finals ... As a freshman was named honorable mention All-Southeastern as a pitcher ... Sported a 5-1 record with a 1.85 ERA ... Struck out 27 and walked four in 37.0 innings of work ... Batted .259 (7-for-27) with three RBI, three doubles and five runs scored ... Named Bruins Offensive Player-of-the-Year, second-team all-conference (shortstop) and honorable mention all-conference (pitcher) as a sophomore ... Owned a 8-2 record on the bump ... Logged 60.0 innings of work with 69 strikeouts, 15 walks and boasted an impressive 0.93 ERA ... Batted .459 with four home runs, 22 RBI, 27 runs and nine doubles ... During junior campaign took home team Offensive Player-of-the-Year honors for the second-straight season ... Also named first-team all-conference as a pitcher and shortstop, first-team All-Eastern Region (pitcher), honorable mention All-Eastern Region (shortstop), honorable mention all-state (pitcher), Virginia Preps All-State, Tidewater Player-of-the-Year, first-team All-Tidewater and Norfolk Sports Club Outstanding Metro Scholastic Player-of-the-Year ... Fanned 71 and walked 20 in 69.0 innings of work ... Tallied an 11-2 overall record (3-0 in post-season) and sported a 1.44 ERA ... At the plate batted .560 (.607 in regular season) with four home runs, 32 RBI, 32 runs, 10 doubles, 27 walks and seven stolen bases ... Listed as the 306th-best senior prospect in the country and the ninth-best senior prospect in Virginia by PGCrosschecker.com ... Played travel ball for Doug Collins and the Canes North where helped them to the 16U Wood World Bat Championship (2009) ... Batted .400 with 16 RBI, 21 runs, five doubles and two triples ... Invited to play in the 2009 Mariners Cup by the Seattle Mariners ... Named Most Valuable Player of the 2010 South Atlantic Border Battle ... Personal: Full name is Nicholas Reid Thompson ... Born November 13, 1992 ... Son of Gerry and Diane Thompson ... Has two siblings (Andrew and Lindsey) ... National Merit Semi-Finalist, Western Branch Junior Scholar Athlete-of-the-Year, Associated Press Scholar with Distinction and National Honor Society member ... Intended major is mathematics.
Coach Godwin's Comments: "Nick is one of the best student-athletes to ever commit to East Carolina. In addition, he is very talented on the diamond. Nick can really hit and projects to be a quality two-way guy for the Pirates. With roster limitations, quality two-way guys like Nick don't grow on trees."

2011-12 East Carolina Recruiting Class

Name - Position - Height - Weight - School (Hometown)
John Allen - LHP - 6-4 - 180 - Kerr-Vance Academy - Creedmoor, N.C.
Tyler Bolton - 3B/RHP - 6-4 - 195 - Kerr-Vance Academy (Wake Forest, N.C.)
Jay Cannon - INF - 6-1 - 186 - Brunswick Community College (Angier, N.C.)
Jharel Cotton - RHP - 6-0 - 189 - Miami Dade College (St. Thomas, Virgin Islands)
Rookie Davis - 1B/RHP - 6-5 - 225 - Dixon High School (Sneads Ferry, N.C.)
Dylan Dickens - RHP - 6-0 - 200 - Person Senior High School (Roxboro, N.C.)
Geno Escalante - C - 5-11 - 205 - Chipola Junior College (Fairfield, Calif.)
Cameron Gallagher - C - 6-3 - 210 - Manheim Township High School (Lancaster, Pa.)
Ryan Gupton - RHP - 6-4 - 190 - D.H. Conley (Winterville, N.C.)
Jeff Hoffman - RHP - 6-4 - 165 - Shaker High School (Latham, N.Y.)
David Lucroy - RHP - 6-3 - 205 - Umatilla High School (Umatilla, Fla.)
Shawn Morimando - LHP - 6-0 - 173 - Ocean Lakes High School (Virginia Beach, Va.)
Nick Thompson - INF/RHP - 6-1 - 195 - Western Branch High School (Chesapeake, Va.)