Lunde taken by Pittsburgh in 18th round of MLB draft

Lander shortstop Erik Lunde makes a play against Armstrong Atlantic. (Photo by Bob Stoner)
Lander shortstop Erik Lunde makes a play against Armstrong Atlantic. (Photo by Bob Stoner)

GREENWOOD - Senior Erik Lunde, Lander's record-setting shortstop who helped lead Lander to the NCAA Division II College World Series in Cary, N.C., was selected by the Pittsburgh Pirates Saturday in the 18th round of the Major League Baseball draft.

Lunde, a native of Pompano Beach, Fla., this season batted .369 with 94 hits, 76 runs, 14 home runs, four triples, 20 doubles, 45 walks and 52 RBI. He had a .643 slugging percentage, a .481 on-base percentage and was 9-for-11 on stolen bases.

Lunde, who set Lander single-season records in games played and started, hits and assists (219), was third in the country in total bases, hits, and runs; and sixth in walks.

"I think you look back at the four-year process for Erik and you see all the hard work and development he has made," said Lander head coach Kermit Smith, who is the Bearcats' all-time winningest coach with a five-year 178-92 overall record and was selected the 2014 Southeast Region Coach of the the Year by ABCA/Rawlings and the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, and was voted the Peach Belt Conference Coach of the Year.

"(Erik) is very deserving," added Smith. "He is a huge success story. He came in and improved on every facet of his game and it's exciting that the Pirates noticed that."

Lunde earned first-team All-America honors by ABCA/Rawlings and was named second team by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association and Daktronics. He is also a two-time All-Peach Belt Conference selection.