January 17 - Jacob Hardney’s decision to transfer to Marymount over the winter break looked to have hit a snag last weekend.
The 6-foot-3, 210-pound right-hander, a resident of Arlington who enrolled at Purdue after his senior season at Gonzaga (D.C.) last spring, wrote Saints coach Frank Leoni early on Saturday that he’d decided to transfer in after just one semester at the Big 10 Conference school.
However, his late decision to switch schools presented a problem: Marymount started classes on Monday, and the school’s admissions office indicated it wouldn’t have time to process his application and get Hardney enrolled for the spring semester.
Then Mother Nature intervened.
Sunday’s snowstorm cancelled the first day of classes, giving the admissions office the additional time necessary to process Hardney’s application and get him enrolled. He was on campus on Tuesday for the first day of classes and tossed a bullpen in a player-run workout that night.
“I was driving my son to Marymount to move into his dorm for the semester on Saturday, and reached out to admissions,” Leoni said. “They didn’t think they’d have time to process everything with his application. But the snow cancelling classes [on Monday] bought us some time to process his application and get him into school.”
Hardney, who had his fastball clocked as high as 91 MPH during fall workouts at Purdue, gives Marymount a proven freshman arm after pitching against some of the area’s top prep teams in the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference. He was 2-4 with a 2.75 ERA and 34 strikeouts in 40.2 innings last spring with the Purple Eagles, and perhaps his best outing of the season came on April 11 in a 4-0 loss to Paul VI Catholic, who was then the No. 1-ranked team in the Northern Virginia Top 10 Poll.
Hardney went six innings that day, striking out seven while allowing three runs (one earned) on three hits. Now Leoni hopes he will provide a lift to a Saints team looking for its first winning season since 2016 in its first year in the new Atlantic East Conference.
“We don't always get that kind of blue chip Division I caliber recruit,” Leoni said. “We've gotten them, but they don't always fall into our lap like that. It's exciting to have a kid this physical with the long and loose arm action. He's got all the physical tools and he's got some really good stuff.”
Multiple Schools to Send Coaches to Mason’s Showcase Camp on Monday
George Mason’s winter showcase camp will also have Catholic, Marymount and Mary Washington and two community colleges, Paul D. Camp and Patrick Henry, with coaches in attendance on Monday.
The Patriots’ coaching staff confirmed the other three schools would be attending, and that others could commit to send coaches to the one-day showcase held on the school’s campus in Fairfax. The camp is open to all high school players and junior college players who are NCAA qualifiers.
For more information or to register, visit www.billbrownbaseballcamps.com.
College World Series Schedule Released
The College World Series will begin on June 15 and run through June 25/26 at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, NE.
The double-elimination CWS consists of the final eight teams from the NCAA Tournament, which consists of 64 Division I teams that qualify as conference champions or through at-large berths. It is being held in Omaha for the 70th consecutive year after being hosted in Kalamazoo, MI for two years from 1947-48 and in Wichita, KS in 1949.
Oregon State defeated Arkansas to win the national championship last year.
Sponsor: The magazine’s College Notebook is sponsored by the R&D Baseball Academy. For more information on the academy, visit its website at www.rdbaseballacademy.com.
Photo of Jacob Hardney courtesy of Gonzaga Baseball