Feb. 24, 2011
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. - Portland reliever Chris Dennis and San Francisco outfielder Connor Bernatz are two of thirty NCAA baseball student-athletes selected as candidates for the 2011 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
As a junior last season, his first with the Pilots, Dennis was named to the NCBWA All-America Second Team and the Louisville Slugger All-America Third Team. The native of Bothell, Wash., was also one of five finalists for the NCBWA Stopper of the Year Award. After transferring to The Bluff from Edmonds CC, Dennis registered 14 saves to set new career and single-season marks for the Pilots. The right-hander went 5-1 overall and posted a miniscule earned run average of 1.88. He also held opposing hitters to a .204 batting average, walked just nine in 43.0 innings of work and notched 51 strikeouts, for a per-game average of 10.7.
Dennis, a finance major with a 3.78 GPA, was named to the initial watch list for the 2011 NCBWA Stopper of the Year Award, while also landing on the NCBWA Pre-Season All-American First Team and the Louisville Slugger Preseason All-American Second Team. He already has three saves on the young season as the Pilots opened with a three-game sweep at Middle Tennessee State last weekend.
Bernatz was an All-West Coast Conference First Team selection a season ago. The business major hit .303 with 25 RBIs a season ago. As a freshman in 2008, Bernatz garnered Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American honors.
Lowe's, an official Corporate Partner of the NCAA, will announce the winner June 24 at the NCAA College World Series® in Omaha.
For more information on all the candidates, visit www.seniorCLASSaward.com.