The Crowder Roughriders landed in the No. 21 spot when Perfect Game/Rawlings released its final NJCAA baseball poll which includes teams from all three divisions of junior college baseball.
Crowder finished 46-15 this past season — part of a 100-win run the last two seasons — and Region 16 runner-up. The Roughriders have one Region 16 title and two runner-up finishes the last three seasons, and three straight 40-win seasons.
Defending national champion Chipola (49-7) earned the No. 1 spot, followed by San Joaquin Delta (43-9), Walters State (60-8), LSU-Eunice (59-6), San Jacinto (52-15), Southern Idaho (50-12), Iowa Western (54-7), Lower Columbia (36-7), Sacramento City (36-16), Jefferson (54-12-1), Wabash Valley (45-11-1), Parkland (51-16-1), Chattahoochee Valley (48-12), Barton (47-15), Cisco (52-6), Yakima Valley (44-11), McLennan (44-15), Connors State (49-9), Arizona Western (49-16), Oakton (44-17), Crowder (46-15), NOC-Enid (48-16), Santa Fe (39-11), Monroe (37-16-1), and South Mountain (46-15).
Teams receiving votes were Cowley County, Temple, Harford, Florence-Darlington, and Ohlone.
Jefferson first baseman Joey Polak and Iowa Western pitcher Sean Chandler earned player and pitcher of the year honors from Perfect Game/Rawlings.
Polak, a transfer from South Carolina who signed with Missouri State for next season, put up some ridiculous numbers with a .459 average (100 for 218), 82 runs scored, 20 doubles, 32 home runs, 107 RBI, and 44 walks and 59 strikeouts. Oh, his on-base and slugging were .550 and .991, respectively. Polak hit a pair of blasts against Crowder in the Region 16 title game at historic Joe Becker Stadium.
Chandler finished 11-0 on the season with a 1.34 ERA and 123 strikeouts and 20 walks over 74 innings. He pitched five complete games and only allowed 11 earned runs all season.
Chandler went up against Crowder’s 11-game winner Zach Jackson when the two teams played early in the season at Joplin High. Jackson went the distance and earned the win as Crowder made a late rally, while Chandler only threw four innings and struggled with his control with five walks. This was Chandler’s first start of the season, meaning that he only walked 15 batters his last 70 innings.
The Texas Rangers drafted Chandler in the sixth round on Tuesday.