Schwellenbach named Golden Spikes Semifinalist

Nebraska's Spencer Schwellenbach was named one of 25 semifinalists for the Golden Spikes Award on Tuesday afternoon, announced by USA Baseball.
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Courtesy: Nebraska Athletics

LINCOLN, Neb. (Nebraska Athletics) – Nebraska’s Spencer Schwellenbach was named one of 25 semifinalists for the Golden Spikes Award on Tuesday afternoon, announced by USA Baseball.

Schwellenbach is the first Husker to be named a semifinalist for the award since Scott Schreiber in 2018. Alex Gordon is the program’s lone recipient of the award, winning it in 2005. Johnny Dorn was also a semifinalist in 2008, while Ken Harvey (1999) and Darin Erstad (1995) were finalists for the award.

Twenty-two different universities were represented by the 2021 semifinalists, and the list includes 12 athletes, including Schwellenbach, who played their way into consideration since the midseason list was announced on April 14. The winner of the 43rd Golden Spikes Award will be announced in July.

Named the 2021 Big Ten Player of the Year, Schwellenbach took the mound for the first time in 2021 and was been one of the top two-way players in the country. A contributor in all three facets of the game, Schwellenbach was Nebraska’s No. 3 hitter all season, started every game at shortstop and has served as the team’s closer.

Offensively, Schwellenbach ranked in the top 10 in the Big Ten in runs, RBIs and walks, while in the field he committed just four errors in 186 chances.

The Saginaw, Mich., native took the mound for the first time during his Husker career this season and was electric, leading the Big Ten with 10 saves. Following a season-high 4.2-inning outing in a win over #1 Arkansas at the Fayetteville Regional, he dropped his blistering ERA to 0.57 in 31.2 innings over 18 appearances. He struck out 34 and allowed just two runs.

Beginning with the announcement of the semifinalists, a ballot will be sent to a voting body consisting of baseball media members, select professional baseball personnel, current USA Baseball staff and the previous winners of the award, representing a group of more than 200 voters. As part of this selection process, all voters will be asked to choose three players from the list of semifinalists. On June 24, USA Baseball will announce the finalists, and voting for the winner will begin that same day.

Fan voting will once again be a part of the Golden Spikes Award in 2021. Beginning with the semifinalist announcement and continuing through the finalist round voting deadline on Tuesday, June 15, fans from across the country will be able to vote for their favorite player on

The winner of the 43rd Golden Spikes Award will be named in July. To stay up-to-date on the 2021 Golden Spikes Award visit and follow @USAGoldenSpikes on Twitter and Instagram.

The 2021 Golden Spikes Award timeline:
•            June 8: USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award semifinalists voting begins
•            June 15: USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award semifinalists voting ends
•            June 24: USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award finalists announced, voting begins
•            July 2: USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award finalists voting ends
•            July: USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award trophy presentation

A complete list of the 2021 Golden Spikes Award semifinalists is as follows:
Name, Position, School, Conference
Andrew Abbott; LHP; Virginia; Atlantic Coast
Tanner Allen; OF; Mississippi State; Southeastern
Jacob Berry; INF; Arizona; Pac-12
Colton Cowser; OF; Sam Houston; Southland
Henry Davis; C; Louisville; Atlantic Coast
Sal Frelick; UTL; Boston College; Atlantic Coast
Tyler Hardman; INF; Oklahoma; Big 12
Jace Jung; INF; Texas Tech; Big 12
Niko Kavadas; INF; Notre Dame; Atlantic Coast
Austin Knight; INF; Charlotte; C-USA
Kevin Kopps; RHP; Arkansas; Southeastern
Jack Leiter; RHP; Vanderbilt; Southeastern
Ethan Long; INF; Arizona State; Pac-12
Ty Madden; RHP; Texas; Big 12
Matt Mikulski; LHP; Fordham; Atlantic 10
Matheu Nelson; C; Florida State; Atlantic Coast
Doug Nikhazy; RHP; Ole Miss; Southeastern
Connor Norby; INF; ECU; American
Kumar Rocker; RHP; Vanderbilt; Southeastern
Spencer Schwellenbach; INF/RHP; Nebraska; Big Ten
Landon Sims; RHP; Mississippi State; Southeastern
Paul Skenes; C/RHP; Air Force; Mountain West
Trey Sweeney; 3B; Eastern Illinois; Ohio Valley
Gavin Williams; RHP; ECU; American
Aaron Zavala; OF; Oregon; Pac-12

About Golden Spikes Award
Since 1978, USA Baseball has honored the top amateur baseball player in the country with the Golden Spikes Award. Following the first-ever presentation of the Award to Bob Horner of Arizona State, the Golden Spikes Award has been presented each year to the player who exhibits exceptional athletic ability and exemplary sportsmanship. The 2019 Golden Spikes Award winner was Adley Rutschman from Oregon State Unviersity. Past winners of this prestigious award include current Major League Baseball players such as Andrew Vaughn (’18), Brendan McKay (’17), Kyle Lewis (’16), Andrew Benintendi (’15), Kris Bryant (’13), Mike Zunino (’12), Trevor Bauer (’11), Bryce Harper (’10), Stephen Strasburg (’09), Buster Posey (’08), David Price (’07) and Alex Gordon (’05). Former Major League stars that have captured the award include Tim Lincecum (’06), Pat Burrell (’98), Mark Kotsay (’95), Robin Ventura (’88), Jim Abbott (’87), Will Clark (’85), Dave Magadan (’83), Terry Francona (’80), Tim Wallach (’79), and Horner (’78).  For more information, please visit  Fans can follow the Golden Spikes Award on Twitter @USAGoldenSpikes.

Categories: Husker Sports, Sports