Gioia Named NEAC Baseball Player-of-the-Year

Release Date:
May 12, 2004
The Office of Sports Information
(716) 649-7900 ext. 333

May 12, 2004


Hamburg, N.Y.Hilbert College shortstop Sam Gioia (West Seneca West/West Seneca, NY) has been named the 2004 North Eastern Athletic Conference Baseball Player-of-the-Year.


The junior helped lead the Hawks to a 6-18 record and a 5-2 mark in conference play. Gioia started all 24 games and hit .318 while leading the Hawks in at bats (76), runs (17), hits (24), doubles (4), triples (1), homeruns (6), RBIs (17), and stolen bases (6). A seldom used relief pitcher, Gioia made 10 appearances earning three saves and recording 16 strikeouts. The 2004 first team All-NEAC selection was also a first team selection as a member of the 2003-04 All-NEAC men’s basketball team, and was a two-time Hilbert Student-Athlete of the Month this past year.


Representing Hilbert on the All-Conference second team were third baseman Paul Cierechowicz (Lackawanna/Lackawanna, NY), outfielder Matt Markott (Lakeshore/Angola, NY), pitcher Dustin Riker (Frontier/Blasdell) and utility player Cory Lindsley (Pioneer/Yorkshire, NY).


Cierechowicz, a sophomore, started 11 games and hit .393 with 11 hits and seven RBIs. Markott, also a sophomore, started 22 games and hit .237 with 14 hits, 16 runs, and tied teammate Tim Gornikiewicz (Lackawanna/Lackawanna, NY) with a team leading 15 walks. Lindsley, one of only two seniors, batted .333 with 19 hits and started 22 of 23 games during the 2004 campaign. Riker was a pleasant surprise for the Hawks. The freshman appeared in seven games on the mound and finished with a 3-2 record while making six starts. The lefty had a team leading 2.17 ERA and recorded 17 strikeouts in 29 innings of work.


Second-year head coach Sam Rutkowski will look forward to the return of 17 players as the Hawks move to the highly competitive Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference (AMCC) for the 2005 season.     

Hilbert College, located in suburban Hamburg, N.Y., south of Buffalo, is a private four-year college founded in 1957 in the Catholic Franciscan tradition. With nearly 1,100 students, Hilbert is a dynamic Western New York college that offers career-focused majors, including one of the top criminal justice programs in the region, and more than 50 minors and concentrations. The college’s engaging, student-centered campus community offers numerous leadership, internship, and service learning opportunities from which students launch successful careers while making positive changes in their communities. The Hilbert Blueprint promotes a well-rounded student experience over four years – starting with the Foundations Seminar in the freshman year, followed by Sophomore Service, Junior Symposium, and culminating with the Senior Capstone. Hilbert has expanded its academic offerings with the college’s first graduate programs and new Accelerated Degree Programs geared to adult learners.