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Dragons’ Edmunson Named Jayhawk West MVP

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By Hutchinson CC Sports Information

 

HUTCHINSON, Kan. – Hutchinson Community College baseball sophomore outfielder Will Edmunson led five Blue Dragon players on the 2023 All-Jayhawk West team and was named the league’s Most Valuable Player on Tuesday.

CLICK FOR 2023 ALL-JAYHAWK WEST BASEBALL TEAM

The sophomore from Luther, Oklahoma, and recent University of Arkansas commit, led the Jayhawk Conference in hitting and was eighth in the nation with a .454 batting average.

Edmunson was the only first-team selection for the Blue Dragons following a 30-28 season in 2023.

Freshman catcher/designated hitter Cody Gunderson was a second-team selection. First baseman Ryan Henderson, outfielder A.J. Mustow and pitcher Ethan Giesbrecht were named all-Jayhawk West honorable mention this season.

Edmunson is the first Blue Dragon to be named Jayhawk West MVP since Zane Schmidt in 2019. He is the fifth Blue Dragon MVP in head coach Ryan Schmidt’s tenure.

WILL EDMUNSON – MVP/1ST TEAM
Edmunson became the first Blue Dragon to win the Jayhawk Conference batting championship since Michael Helman in 2017.

The Blue Dragon outfielder hit .454 with 93 total hits, 17 doubles, four triples and 51 RBIs, hitting primarily out of the No. 2 slot in the batting order. Edmunson scored 78 runs, walked 23 times, was hit with pitches 16 times and had a team-high 15 stolen bases this season.

Edmunson started the season with a 16-game hitting streak, which tied Brock Schaffer and Ben McLaughlin for the fifth-longest hitting streak in program history. Edmunson also put together hitting streaks of 12 and 10 games this season.

Edmunson had 33 multi-hit games, including five three-hit games, a four-hit game against Pratt on March 19 and a five-hit game against Southeast Nebraska on February 11.

In addition to Edmunson leading the KJCCC in batting, he also led the league and was sixth in the NJCAA in total hits. He was second in the KJCCC runs scored and on-base percentage (.532) and was sixth in the Jayhawk in slugging percentage (.737). Edmunson had a team-high 23-game streak of reaching base this season.

Edmunson’s .454 batting average and 93 total hits both ranked fourth in Blue Dragon single-season history. His 78 runs scored tied Logan Sartori and Shane Cooper for second on the single-season list. He 151 total baes were seventh most in team single-season history.

Edmunson’s .424 career batting average ranks No. 4 in Blue Dagon career statistical history.

He became the 51st Blue Dragon in program history to reach 100 career hits, closing his career with 106.

CODY GUNDERSON – 2ND TEAM
Despite missing 13 games because of injury, the freshman from St. Malo, Manitoba, Canada had a strong season behind the plate and as a designated hitter.

Gunderson hit .367 this season, going 55 for 150 in 45 games.

Gunderson had 14 doubles and 10 home runs while scoring 44 runs and driving in 38 runs.

Gunderson went a season-high 4 for 5 with a double and home run on April 27 against eventual Jayhawk West champion Barton. He had a five-RBI game against Pratt on March 19 and drove in four runs against Seward County on March 26.

Defensively, Gunderson had a .962 fielding percentage and threw out 8 of 27 base stealers this season.

RYAN HENDERSON – HONORABLE MENTION
A sophomore first baseman from Buhler, Henderson hit .271 in 57 games played, going 54 for 199 at the plate. For a second-straight season, Henderson reached double figures with 10 home runs and hit drove in 51 runs while scoring 41 runs.

Henderson had two-home run, four-RBI game against Pratt on March 17. During that Pratt doubleheader, Henderson was 6 for 7 with three home runs and eight RBIs. He had career highs with a 4 for 5 game with six RBIs, including a double and home run against Garden City on April 20.

Henderson steadily became one of the top defensive first baseman in the KJCCC this season with a .989 fielding percentage. He had four errors in 354 total defensive chances this season.

With 20 career home runs, Henderson is only the 16th Blue Dragon with 20 career homers. He also became the 50th Blue Dragon in program history to reach 100 hits, closing his career with 110 hits.

A.J. MUSTOW – HONORABLE MENTION
A freshman outfielder from Sydney, Australia, Mustow was the Blue Dragons’ third-leading hitter with a .331 batting average this season.

Mustow was 49 for 148 with 12 doubles, three triples and six home runs. Mustow drove in 44 runs and scored 34 in 47 games played this season.

Mustow had 15 multi-hit games and 16 multi-RBI games this season. He had a season’s best four hits against Garden City on April 20 and four RBIs against the Sterling College JV on April 17. Mustow had two two-home run games, doing so against the Sterling JV and Barton on April 29.

Mustow led the Blue Dragons with six outfield assists this season from left field.

ETHAN GIESBRECHT – HONORABLE MENTION
A freshman right-handed pitcher from Altona, Manitoba, Canada, Giesbrecht settled into a weekend rotation spot early in the season.

Giesbrecht posted a 4-2 record with a 5.43 earned-run average in 10 starts and 13 overall appearances this season. In league games, Giesbrecht was 4-1 with a 5.58 ERA. He had three complete games and a pair of shutouts against Garden City on April 22 and Colby on May 6.

Over 53 innings pitched, the Blue Dragon right-hander struck out 40 and walked only 14. He allowed 64 hits and 32 earned runs with opponents hitting .299 against him.

Giesbrecht struck out a season-high seven against Cloud County on April 8 in a no-decision. He had six strikeouts in his five-inning complete game against Colby on May 6. Giesbrecht allowed just two hits in game May 6 game, a season-low for hit allowed.