Coastal Carolina debuts Sunday in College World Series with honors


Coastal Carolina hadn’t played its first College World Series game but the Chanticleers were already winners.

After leading CCU to the greatest season in program history, head coach Gary Gilmore was named the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association National Coach of the Year on Saturday. Outfielder Connor Owings and designated hitter G.K. Young were selected first-team All-Americans by the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA).

Owings, the Big South Player of the Year, and Young are the first Chanticleers selected to the ABCA’s first team.

Gilmore, Big South Coach of the Year, has led the Chanticleers to 981 victories, 15 NCAA Regional appearances and three NCAA Super Regional appearances in 21 years at CCU.

“Congratulations to Coach Gilmore on his first NCBWA National Coach of the Year award and getting his Chanticleers to Omaha,” NCBWA Executive Director Bo Carter said. “He has given so much time and energy to that program and for him to lead his team to the pinnacle of the sport is a testament to his loyalty and dedication.”

The Chanticleers also feature righthander Andrew Beckwith, the Big South Pitcher of the Year, and shortstop Michael Paez, who was selected in the fourth round of last week’s MLB Draft last week by the New York Mets.

In their CWS opener, the Chants stunned No. 1 seed Florida, 2-1, behind Andrew Beckwith’s career-high seven strikeouts.


CCU CWS team photo

The Chanticleers have won 40 of their last 48 games, winning the Big South regular season by seven games, sweeping through the conference tournament, winning the NCAA Raleigh Regional and becoming the first team to sweep LSU at Alex Box Stadium in an NCAA Super Regional.

The Chanticleers punched their first ticket to the CWS with a thrilling 4-3 walk-off victory against LSU in game two of the Baton Rouge Super Regional last weekend. They are the first Big South team to reach the CWS.

Some highlights from #CCUinOMAHA:

• Coastal Carolina’s Road to Omaha

Above: Video courtesy WPDE ABC15 in Conway, S.C.
Middle: Quite possibly the most anticipated team photo in Coastal Carolina history, the Chanticleers in Omaha for the College World Series. (Courtesy CCU Athletics)