2018 (Redshirt Senior): Team Captain … Appeared in 32 games, making 26 starts … Started as the designated hitter in 21 games with five starts at catcher … Hit for a .190 average with 16 hits, seven of which went for extra bases … Hit four home runs and drove in 14 runs … Hit at a .381 slugging percentage and drew nine walks on the season … Did not commit an error in the field … In the first game of the season, finished 1-for-4 with a solo home run … Followed with a 1-for-2 performance against Appalachian State (Feb. 17) … Hit his second home run of the season, a three-run homer against Wake Forest (Feb. 28) … Connected for another home run against VMI (Mar. 25) … Went 2-for-3 with three RBI and a double against High Point (Mar. 27) … Hit a pinch hit home run against ETSU (Apr. 24), driving in two … In the opening game against Mercer, finished 2-for-2 with an RBI, his second career triple and a run scored (May 5).
2017 (Senior): Team Captain … Johnny Bench Award Watchlist prior to starting the season… Reached base in both plate appearances against Wake Forest (Feb. 21), including an RBI single… In his lone start of the season, went 1-for-3 and scored a run against Michigan State (Feb. 24)… An injury forced him to miss the remainder of the season and received a medical hardship.
2016 (Junior): Team Captain … Johnny Bench Award Watchlist prior to starting the season… Started and caught all 59 games… Earned Southern Conference All-Tournament after hitting .462 with five RBI and three runs scored in the tournament… Hit for a .277 average with nine home runs, and 17 doubles… Responsible for 52 RBI and scored 42 runs… Went 2-for-2 on stolen bases… Recorded a .996 fielding percentage having only committed two errors in 483 chances… caught 11 runners attempting to steal bases… Had 15 multi-hit games and 10 multi-RBI contests… Had a 12 game hit streak (Apr. 10-Apr. 30)… Hit a game-tying home run in the bottom of the ninth inning against Illinois (Mar. 12) and UNCG won in extra innings… Drove in one RBI in in 13 straight during the hit streak… Drove in a season-high six runs against Marist (Mar. 18) finishing 4-for-5 with four runs scored, two doubles and a home run, a triple short of the cycle… Finished 2-for-3 with an RBI and a double against The Citadel (Apr. 10)… Went 2-for-5 with two RBI and scored three times with a home run against Furman (Apr. 16)… Finished 2-for-4 with two RBI, and two runs scored with a double and a home run against Western Carolina (May 14)… In the first round of the SoCon tournament went 3-for-4 with four RBI, a double and a home run… Went 3-for-5 with an RBI, a run scored and a double.
2015 (Sophomore): Appeared in 39 games and made 36 starts at catcher … Batted .289 with 39 hits, 19 runs scored, seven doubles, four home runs and 23 RBI … Produced nine multi-hit and six multi-RBI efforts … Went 4-for-4 with a run scored a four RBI in the series finale against Wofford (May 3) … Came up big in the Spartans’ 5-3 win at No. 17 North Carolina (April 28) with three hits, two runs scored, two RBI and a home run … Scored two runs in games against Princeton (March 7), Western Carolina (March 20) and North Carolina … Of his four home runs, three occurred in conference games … Threw out 14 runners trying to steal a base … Turned in a .984 fielding percentage making just five errors in 308 defensive chances.
2014 (Freshman): Played in 26 games and made 22 starts … Batted .256 and tallied 20 hits, 12 runs scored, three doubles, a triple, a home run, nine RBI and 28 total bases … Ranked third on the squad in putouts with 162 … Notched his first collegiate hit at Georgia Tech (Feb. 23) … Scored two runs in games against Princeton (March 15) and at The Citadel (May 17) … Tallied multiple hits in three games … Hit his first collegiate home run at The Citadel … Legged out a triple against Samford (May 3) … Threw out 12 runners attempting to steal a base.
High School: Completed his senior season at Riverside High School with a .395 batting average and four home runs, 11 doubles and 24 RBI … Helped the Pirates to the second round of the 2013 North Carolina 4A state tournament … Hit .471 for the Pirates his junior season … Is a four-time all-conference honoree and was the team MVP as a sophomore as well as defensive player of the year his freshman campaign … Was a key piece of the Pirate squad that won the PAC 6 Conference championship in 2010 while also earning three letters as a shooting guard and forward for the basketball squad – earning all-conference accolades in the sport twice … A four-year A/B honor roll student, Kusz also played for the Dirtbags club over the summer, helping the team to a top 20 ranking in the state.
Personal: Full name is Samuel Jake Kusz … Born August 23, 1994 … Intended major is communication … Son of Jeffrey and Teresa Kusz.
|SINGLE-GAME HIGHS [all-time ranking]:
Hits: 4 [t-10th], Marist, Mar 18, 2016 ; Wofford, May 03, 2015
Doubles: 2 [t-5th], East Tennessee State, Apr 22, 2016 ; Marist, Mar 18, 2016
Triples: 1 [t-5th], Samford, May 03, 2014 ; Mercer, May 05, 2018
Home runs: 1, 18 times
Total bases: 9 [t-5th], Marist, Mar 18, 2016
RBI: 6 [t-3rd], Marist, Mar 18, 2016
Runs scored: 4 [t-4th], Marist, Mar 18, 2016
Walks: 3 [t-1st], VMI, Apr 02, 2016
Hit by pitch: 1 [t-12th], 9 times
Struck out: 4 [t-1st], Wofford, May 01, 2015
Sac flies: 1 [t-4th], 9 times
Sac bunts: 1 [t-5th], 8 times
At bats: 5, 16 times
Stolen bases: 1, Western Carolina, Mar 22, 2015 ; vs North Carolina A&T, Mar 22, 2016 ; at Campbell, Mar 30, 2016
Caught stealing: 1 [t-1st], The Citadel, Apr 17, 2015
Field chances: 16 [t-2nd], Elon, Apr 26, 2014
Putouts: 14 [t-4th], Appalachian State, Feb 18, 2018
Assists: 3, Elon, Feb 23, 2016 ; vs NC State, Feb 28, 2015 ; at Western Carolina, May 13, 2016
Runners CS: 2 [t-1st], 4 times