2012 Iowa Conference champions
PELLA—Central College is the NCAA Division III baseball earned run average team leader. Two of the squad's pitchers are in the top 15 individually.
Central (29-9 overall) headlines the field of 364 institutions with a 2.15 ERA. SUNY Cortland (N.Y.) and Kean (N.J.) follow at 2.17 while defending national champion Marietta (Ohio) is fourth at 2.24. The rankings cover games through May 6.
Individually, Dutch closer Judson McKown (sophomore, Maple Plain, Minn., Orono HS) ranks 12th with a 1.26 ERA. Marietta’s Austin Blaski leads the category at 0.58. McKown is 6-1 and has struck out 25 batters and walked 10 in 42.2 innings.
Dirk Lindaman (junior, Ankeny) is 15th with a 1.35 ERA. He’s also 6-1. Lindaman has pitched 53.1 innings, striking out 34 and walking 14.
Senior hurler Joel Pulliam (Des Moines, Lincoln HS), the school’s all-time career strikeouts leader, is 87th with a 2.19 ERA. Pulliam is 8-1 and ranks third in the Iowa Conference with 72 season strikeouts. He’s thrown 74 innings and walked 23 batters.
Central ranks fourth in hits allowed (7.19 per nine innings), 19th in sacrifice bunts (43) and 20th in win-loss percentage (.763).
The Dutch captured their first league title since 1948 in regular season play and take the No. 1 seed into the conference tournament this weekend. Central has a first-round bye and plays the winner of Buena Vista Univ. and Luther College Thursday at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Cedar Rapids. First pitch is set for 7 p.m.