Pacers rack up awards in baseball

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GREENWOOD, S.C. - Peach Belt Conference regular-season champion USC Aiken had eight players earn all-conference accolades on Tuesday night at the conference’s banquet.

In addition, coach Kenny Thomas was tabbed Peach Belt Conference Coach of the Year, while Sean Miller was named the conference freshman of the year.

Six Pacers – Ty Barkell (first base), Bill Gerstenslager (designated hitter), Bryce Baur (outfielder), Ryan Metzler (second baseman), Derek Beasley (starting pitcher) and Taylor Grover (relief pitcher) – made first-team all-conference.

Josh Miller (utility player) and Ryan Milewski (starting pitcher) were named to the second team.

The Peach Belt Conference Coach of the Year nod continues what has been a milestone year for Thomas. Now a two-time Peach Belt Conference Coach of the Year (2009 and 2013), Thomas surpassed the 1,000-win plateau earlier this season. He also earned his 500th win as the Pacer skipper in USC Aiken’s three-game Peach Belt Conference road sweep of then No. 10 Lander.

Thomas is 508-286 as coach of the top-ranked Pacers entering the Peach Belt Conference Tournament and is 1,028-509 in 26 seasons as a head coach.

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