Third-year SUNY New Paltz Baseball pitcher Chris Chismar was picked as the SUNYAC Baseball Pitcher of the Week for the week ending March 18.
On Saturday, March 17, Chismar helped the Hawks defeat St. Lawrence University, while breaking his career strikeout record by pitching seven shutout innings, giving him a career total of 168.
This is Chismar’s third time receiving the SUNYAC Pitcher of the Week award, with precedents on March 14, 2011 and April 25, 2011.
Chismar said while he was hoping for the award after his performance, the accolades are always received with enthusiasm.
“I was kind of expecting it because I broke the record,” Chismar said. “The award is significant in confidence. The whole team and the coaches gave me congrats after receiving it.”
Chismar began his baseball career at age four in his hometown of Lindenhurst, N.Y. Having played all through high school, Chismar said New Paltz baseball is significantly more competitive than his other experiences.
Head Coach Matt Griffiths said he is not surprised Chismar received the award, as he is an “incredible athlete” and among “the best in the conference.”
Griffiths said Chismar’s success has a direct impact on the team. His constant commitment to improvement and refusal to become complacent encourages the team to follow suit.
“He is the ace on a good staff who has won some big games for us over the last three years,” Griffiths said. “I expect the same as what he expects from himself: to continue to improve his deficiencies, in all aspects of his game, until they are his greatest strengths.”
Chismar said the coaching during his time on the New Paltz Baseball team has been exceptional and the reason for his success.
With no down time, he said, the pitchers are being scheduled their own time to condition, and the practices are thus conducted in “a better way.”
The team will be losing 10 fourth-year starters at the conclusion of the academic year, Chismar said. Despite this, the team’s anticipation for the remainder of the season has not diminished.
“Our goal is to win a conference championship,” Chismar said. “We’ve never won before, so it’s what we are aiming for this season.”
Griffiths said in order to bring the SUNYAC title to New Paltz, the team must play at the highest level they can and they are now more focused on perfecting all aspects of their game during practices.
Chismar’s personal goal — along with continuing baseball post-graduation — is to win Pitcher of the Year conference title, as he has in the past, he said.
“I want other schools to know what they are up against,” he said. “I want the rival teams to hear I’m pitching against them and be scared.”
The Hawks will return to the diamond on Friday, April 6 at 3 p.m. against rival SUNY Oneonta at Loren Campbell Memorial Field.