Booker earns honorable mention All-American baseball honor

Polk County native Joel Booker capped a superb sophomore season Wednesday by being named a National Junior College Athletic Association baseball honorable mention All-American. Booker had earlier been chosen for the All-Region 11 first team.

A two-year starter for Indian Hills Community College, Booker led the Falcons in seven offensive categories this year. He paced the team in at-bats (186), runs (58), hits (75), triples (7), RBIs (61), average (.403) and slugging percentage (.699). He also stole 24 bases in 26 attempts and struck out just 14 times in his 186 at-bats.

IHCC head coach Cam Walker said Booker has only scratched the surface of his potential.

“We knew Joel had tremendous physical talent when he came to Indian Hills,” said Walker. “He turned those tools and talents into becoming an outstanding baseball player. He has an ultra-aggressive approach at the plate and the ability to make contact, as evidenced by his low strike out number.”

Booker signed last winter to attend the University of Iowa and play for the Hawkeyes. However, he could have a decision to make since Walker thinks he might get drafted somewhere in the first 10 rounds of this year’s MLB draft. The draft begins Thursday with the first two rounds, followed by rounds 3-10 on Friday.

“No matter where Joel continues his career – either at Iowa or in professional baseball – he is sure to be successful, not only because of his ability and work ethic, but because he is a professional young man with outstanding make-up and manners,” Walker said.

Booker is the first baseball All-American for Indian Hills since Ray Kruml was named to the NJCAA third team in 2006.

– Information from Indian Hills Community College sports information