Baseball players succeed off field

By Tyler Dixon

Two Salukis shined on the field and in the classroom last season, earning scholar athlete awards.

Senior utility player Austin Montgomery and junior pitcher Tyler Dray were selected for the Missouri Valley Conference MVC Scholar-Athlete First Team. To be eligible for this award, Montgomery and Dray had to be starters or key reserves, have a 3.2 grade point average minimum and sophomore level or above in academics. They also must have completed a minimum of one year at the college or university.

Montgomery, a mechanical engineering major from Marion, is making his second appearance on the Scholar-Athlete First Team.


“It’s nice to get recognized for putting the numbers up in the classroom,” he said.

Montgomery also excelled on the field last season. He led the team with a .350 batting average, 17 doubles, two triples, seven home runs, 46 RBIs, 121 total bases, a .535 slugging percentage and was also tied for the most hits with 79. Montgomery also made Second Team All-MVC as a utility player.

Dray, an accounting major from Rockford and relief pitcher for the Salukis, made the Scholar-Athlete Team as an honorable mention last season.

In 27 innings pitched, Dray had a 1.67 earned run average and allowed only five earned runs. He also held opposing batters to a .174 batting average.

Dray said making the Scholar-Athlete Team was his biggest accomplishment in his three years at the university. He said he was happy to be able to get recognition for his work off the field.

“It’s great because, as a student-athlete, you really want be to a student first,” Dray said.