Joe Tonelli, Anthony Alicki ECC baseball's best

Six members of the University of Bridgeport baseball team, along with head coach Joe Tonelli, have been recognized by the East Coast Conference with selections to the 2015 All-ECC baseball teams as chosen by votes of the league’s coaches and released on Wednesday afternoon.

Four Purple Knights earned first team All-Conference honors, two have been selected second team All-ECC, and head coach Tonelli has been named the 2015 East Coast Conference Coach of the Year.

Earning spots on the 2015 All-ECC Baseball first team are senior shortstop John Ascenzia (West Haven), senior designated hitter Tim Bickford (Wallingford), junior starting pitcher Rob Anderson (Stratford) and freshman relief pitcher PJ Martino (Medford, N.Y.)

Freshman second baseman Jose Negron (New Haven) and sophomore starting pitcher Anthony Alicki (Milford) received 2015 All-ECC second team accolades.

Ascenzia, who became Bridgeport’s career leader in hits earlier this season, leads the team with a .324 batting average, .a 411 on base percentage and in hits with 44, plus he is second on the club in runs batted in with 26. In the field, he has made only three errors so far this season handling 166 chances at shortstop.

Bickford, who moved into the top spot on the UB career doubles list this season, leads the Purple Knights in home runs with four and RBI with 29 so far in 2015. He has a .277 batting average, plus a .415 slugging percentage.

Anderson, in his first season in a Bridgeport uniform, heads into this weekend’s ECC Championship Tournament with a 6-0 record and a 1,66 ERA. In 48.2 innings pitched so far this year, he has limited the opposition to a batting average against of only .176 allowing only 30 hits, plus he has struck out 47 and walked only 19.

Martino has three saves so far in 2015. He leads the team in appearances with 14 and has allowed only 23 hits in 41.1 innings pitched which is a .162 batting average against.

Negron is second on the team in batting average at .319, and Jose leads the team in stolen bases with 14.

Alicki leads the Purple Knights in wins with six so far this season (6-3 record) and strikeouts with 72 in 65.1 innings pitched. He has limited opponents to a.198 batting average against giving up just 46 hits in those 65.1 innings on the mound.

Tonelli was named the Coach of the Year by his peers after guiding the Purple Knights to a share of the East Coast Conference regular season title for the first time in program history.

Under Tonelli’s leadership, the Purple Knights have compiled a 23-22 overall, 15-9 ECC record on the season and are currently ranked No. 9 in the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) East Region poll.

The UB baseball season continues on Thursday, May 7, when the Purple Knights open play in the double-elimination 2015 East Coast Conference Championship Tournament versus St. Thomas Aquinas College at 12 p.m.

This year’s ECC Baseball Championship will be hosted by Molloy College at Mitchell field in Uniondale, N.Y. The winner of the ECC Championship Tournament will received an automatic bid to the 2015 NCAA Division II Baseball Championship Tournament.