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Hartford High grad, Nighthawk Allard makes move to Division I

  • Nighthawks pitcher and Hartford High alumnus Jordy Allard winds up to throw in the third inning of their game against North Adams in White River Junction, Vt., on June 28, 2019. (Valley News - Geoff Hansen) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

  • Southern New Hampshire University sophpomore Jordy Allard, of Woodstock, Vt. Portraits of the New England Collegiate Baseball League's 2018 Upper Valley Nighthawks at the Valley News office in West Lebanon, N.H., Monday, June 4, 2018. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

  • Nighthawks players AJ Franklin, left, Jordan DiValerio, and Jordy Allard sell 50-50 raffle tickets during their game with Sanford in White River Junction, Vt., on July 30, 2018. (Valley News - Jennifer Hauck) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 12/9/2020 9:59:23 PM
Modified: 12/9/2020 9:59:14 PM

When Jordy Allard’s college career eventually ends, he’ll have attended a school in each of the NCAA’s three divisions.

The Hartford High grad and former Upper Valley Nighthawk announced via Twitter on Tuesday that he will be attending the University of Richmond (Va.) next fall as a graduate student and will pitch for the Spiders’ Division I baseball program, which competes in the Atlantic 10.

Before he makes the move south, however, he’s focused on his final season with D-III Babson College in Wellesley, Mass., and earning his undergraduate degree in business. A right-hander, he played his freshman year at D-II Southern New Hampshire University before transferring.

The extra year of NCAA eligibility stems from last spring when COVID-19 eliminated the 2020 season, save for the one appearance he squeezed in before the shutdown. He’s confident the two summers spent with the Nighthawks in the New England Collegiate Baseball League have him ready to compete at any level.

“I didn’t want to leave an extra year of eligibility on the table,” he said in a Tuesday phone interview. “It was a more dream-based (decision). My whole life I wanted to play D-I, and I’ve proved I can play D-III and D-II, along with the NECBL. This opportunity came up, and I just wanted to take it.”

Allard never stepped foot on campus before his commitment because of COVID-19, but the academics are similar to those offered at Babson, he said. This fall, he emailed coaches across the East Coast his stats, grades and video of his pitching. Other schools in the mix were Northeastern, Boston College and UConn, but he wanted to find a place where he could make an impact immediately.

In his only full season at Babson in 2018-19 as a sophomore, Allard posted a 4.13 ERA in 56⅔ innings, good for an 8-1 record in 11 appearances. The Beavers reached the D-III College World Series that season, where his only loss came.

He’s thrown a combined 50⅓ innings as a member of Nighthawks over the span of the 2018 and 2019 seasons, striking out 54 batters and earning a 2.87 ERA.

“Jordy has the desire to be the guy out there on the mound,” wrote Allard’s former Nighthawks coach, Keller Bradford, in a Wednesday morning text message. “That’s something you either have or you don’t; it’s not a learned skill. Jordy has good stuff on the mound and he is talented, but his best talents are his intangibles, and when it comes to winning at any level, those are the most important things and that is what is going to make him successful. He is a winner.”

This past summer Allard assisted the White River Junction Junior Nighthawks, which replaced the American Legion senior Post 84 team when Vermont canceled its summer season due to COVID-19 concerns. He had signed a two-week deal with the Falmouth Commodores of the Cape Cod Baseball League, but the pandemic wiped out that opportunity.

As for what’s up this summer, Allard’s unsure. A good spring season could earn him another contract down at the Cape, and if he can’t ink a full-season deal, he can head back home to the Upper Valley for a final summer with the Nighthawks.

“No reason for me to go anywhere else when I have a good NECBL team in my hometown,” he said.

Pete Nakos can be reached at pnakos@ vnews.com.




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