Posted: June 14, 2017
[ SOURCE: HIURoyals.com ]
FULLERTON, CA – Hope International University proudly announces yet another remarkable first for its fledgling baseball program in the 2017 season – a player selected in the First-Year Player Draft of Major League Baseball. Royals centerfielder Cameron Baranek (JR/Orange, CA) was chosen by the Miami Marlins in the ninth round with the 269th overall pick.
After two seasons at Santa Ana College, Baranek transferred to HIU in 2016 and led the team in most major offensive categories on his way to an NAIA All-American recognition and an All-GSAC selection. His .364 batting average, 14 home runs and 20 stolen bases are single-season school records.
"I'm just so thankful to God for everything He's done for me, and I could not be more grateful to the coaching staff and all my teammates for helping me along the entire way pushing me to always be better,” Baranek shares of his career at HIU. “[What we did this year], it's a team effort, and we couldn't have gotten [as far as we did] in 2017 without everybody doing their part."
// For more on Cameron’s journey to Major League Baseball, click here.
// To read the OC Register article announcing Cameron’s draft, click here.
Additionally, the Royals Baseball and Softball teams both earned several notable recognitions from the NAIA Conference in their 2016-2017 seasons.
Baseball set a number of new career marks and season bests over the course of their second season, including their first conference title, their first NAIA Opening Round Championship, and the result of that Championship, a trip to NAIA World Series. The final NAIA Baseball Coaches’ Postseason Poll ranked HIU #10 in the nation. And Cameron Baranek was named an Honorable Mention to the NAIA All-American Team. The team had ten fewer losses in their second season and fourteen more wins, pushing them to a 56-46-1 program record since the Royals’ program began back on January 22, 2016.
The Royals Softball team finished their historic season with a program-best 30 wins against 17 losses after also setting the record for longest winning streak. The softball team had three players named NAIA All-Region in the 2016-2017 season: Alejandra Guillen, Crystal Cano and Justice Walker. Guillen is the first Royal to be selected as a First Team NFCA All-West Region player.