Jeannette grad sees 'nice ride' end with Bethany baseball
Jordan Ault was behind the plate one last time Saturday.
When the Bethany College baseball team lost to Penn State Behrend 8-2 in the NCAA Division III East Coast Athletic Conference (ECAC) South Regional Championship, it not only ended the season for Ault, a Jeannette High School graduate, it ended his collegiate baseball career.
“It's been really fun, a nice ride for this bunch of seniors,” said Ault.
Ault emerged as Bethany's starting catcher this season after not having played the position since high school. He played in 22 of Bethany's 37 games, starting 19.
He had a .250 batting average, a .283 slugging percentage and a .378 on-base percentage. He had 15 hits, 15 RBIs and 13 walks in 73 at-bats. He walked and drove in a run in Saturday's finale.
And while this season was his first as a regular on the field, his contributions off of the field have been constant, said head coach Rick Carver.
The coach called Ault one of the team's leaders this season and the type of player who displayed “what it's all about” throughout his career.
“His whole career he was a great teammate,” said Carver. “He always did everything we asked of him. He pitched his freshman and sophomore years, we moved him around the infield a little bit and this year he was our catcher. In this day-and age, it's refreshing to see a kid with that kind of perseverance and determination.”
Bethany finished the season 19-18 overall and, in addition to the ECAC tournament, also qualified for the Presidents Athletic Conference tournament.
Now that the season is over, Ault is reflecting on the experience he had as a college athlete.
“It's been unbelievable,” he said. “It's an experience you can't put into words. It helps you build as a person more than you could believe. It's not just the sport.”
As for what's next, Ault graduated with a bachelor's degree in accounting and a 3.0 grade point average. He's debating on whether to enter the workforce immediately or to seek a graduate assistant coaching position at a college. Either way, he knows he wants baseball — specifically coaching — in his future.
“Absolutely. I want to be part of baseball for the rest of my life,” he said. “I'd like to coach … I'd like to teach a lot of what I learned in the game, the stuff I experienced.”
Brian Knavish is a contributing writer.