Top-10 WNE Athletics Stories of Calendar Year 2013 Continues with Another Tie

Top-10 WNE Athletics Stories of Calendar Year 2013 Continues with Another Tie
SPRINGFIELD, Mass.‚ÄĒAs our countdown of the top-10 stories/moments of the 2013 calendar year for Western New England Athletics continues, we find ourselves at number seven -- a tie between third baseman Mike Rubino becoming the baseball program's all-time hits leader and Commonwealth Coast Conference Player of the Year and the launch of Golden Bear Sports Network (GBSN). Both entries shared 80 percent of the vote.

A historic career came to an end last May for Golden Bear corner infielder Mike Rubino of Northford, Conn. (Hill Regional High School). Rubino saved his best for last in his senior season, earning the CCC's Player of the Year award and his third all-conference first team appearance.

Rubino was at the top of his game during the in-conference portion of the Golden Bears' season, batting .500 and a team-high 17 runs batted in. The criminal justice graduate was in the top-three for all major batting categories during conference only play, including league leads in total bases (34) and hitting.

By season's end, Rubino played his way to the top of the program's all-time hits list with 281, good for a seventh place tie in NCAA Division III history. Rubino broke Tony Trubia's WNE career hits record (217 from 2008-11) on March 18 when he went 3-for-4 with a pair of RBI in a 16-5 win against Rowan in the RussMatt Baseball Invitational played in central Florida. He set the record in his third plate appearance of the day, which was a 5th-inning single on a 1-ball, 2-strike count.

The third baseman finished his memorable Golden Bear career with a three-hit outing in his final game in the Royal Blue and Gold in the NCAA Division III New England Regional Baseball Championship semifinals on Cape Cod. For the season overall, Rubino hit .413 with 14 doubles, 47 RBI and had percentages of .503 slugging and .484 on-base--all team bests.

Along with Rubino's benchmark season, the birth of Golden Bear Sports Network in August has ushered in a new media platform for WNE Athletics. The network, which is presented by the Western New England University Office of Alumni Relations and WNE Alumni Association, provides live video web streaming in high-definition for the first time in the athletic department's history.

GSBN provides viewers with access to live coverage of 100 home games covering 14 Golden Bear sports throughout the 2013-14 academic year. During the fall, GSBN provided coverage of 30 of the University's home games for Western New England students, families and friends.

With the advent of GBSN, WNEGoldenBears.com has seen a significant increase in web traffic since the first game was webcasted: (Men's) Soccer City Shootout Semifinals versus Westfield State on Aug. 31.

The network will continue to cover Western New England Athletics select home games throughout the rest of the school year. To view GSBN programming and see the schedule for up-coming events, log on to WNEGoldenBears.tv. The spring schedule to feature baseball, men's and women's lacrosse and softball will be announced soon.