May 17, 2011

McGrath, Ferro earn All-UAA baseball accolades

WALTHAM, Mass. – Brandeis University senior John McGrath of New York, N.Y., and sophomore Chris Ferro of Walpole, Mass., have been named to the All-University Athletic Association (UAA) baseball team. McGrath was a first-team selection at pitcher, while Ferro was a second-team choice as a catcher/infielder.

McGrath had a breakout season for the Judges on the hill. He led Brandeis with a 7-1 record and a 3.99 earned-run average, tying for the UAA lead in victories and finishing 10th in ERA. In a league-high 79.0 innings, he struck out 53 hitters, second on the Judges and third in the Association. His seven victories were the most by a Brandeis pitcher since 2006.

McGrath did not lose a decision in the regular season, suffering his only defeat in the quarterfinals of the 2011 ECAC Division III New England tournament. Among his conquests in the regular season were 2011 NCAA tournament squads from Bridgewater State University, Rhode Island College and Tufts University, ranked No. 16 in the nation in Division III at the end of the regular season. McGrath threw at least seven innings in six of his 11 starts, including seven-and-two-thirds innings in a UAA win over Washington University on March 11, and a complete-game seven-hitter against RIC on April 7.

Ferro was a second-team All-UAA selection for the second year in a row. He started 24 games at catcher, 12 in the outfield and four at designated hitter, missing only two contests. Ferro hit .321 (45-for-140) with 23 RBI and 34 runs scored, second-most on the team. He had six doubles, one triple and one home run on the campaign. Ferro was also a perfect 11-for-11 in stolen bases and made just five errors in 180 chances for a .974 fielding percentage, throwing out seven of 36 potential base stealers.

Ferro had 14 multi-hit games, five with multiple RBI and eight in which he scored more than one run. At one stretch early in the season, Ferro crossed the plate in 13 consecutive games. One of his top performances came April 3 in a doubleheader against WPI, when he went 3-for-6 at the plate with four RBI and four runs scored across the two games. He hit a double, triple and home run in the process, helping the Judges sweep the Engineers, 12-5 and 8-7.

Brandeis finished the 2011 season with a record of 24-19 (2-4 UAA) in head coach Pete Varney's 30th season at the helm. The Judges had their winningest campaign since 2002 and made the postseason for the first time since 2008, earning the second seed in the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III New England tournament before getting upset by seventh-seeded Anna Maria College.

McGrath is a 2007 graduate of Trevor Day School. He is the son of Peter McGrath and Susan Lesinski, New York, N.Y.

Ferro is a 2009 graduate of Walpole High School. He is the son of Charles and Veronica Ferro, Walpole, Mass.