BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — For the first time since 2019, the top player in high school baseball in Western New York was awarded the Colpoys-Barrow Cup on Tuesday evening at Ilio DiPaolos.

17 players were nominated for the prestigious award, but it was Hamburg’s Nolan Smith that is coming home with the hardware after his outstanding performance through the playoffs on the way to the Class A State Championship game for the Bulldogs.

In his junior campaign, Nolan put together a .424 batting average with 28 hits and 3 home runs on the season. On the mound, he collected seven wins and tossed an impressive 1.63 ERA in 47 innings pitched.

“I think with Nolan, every time we thought he had that defining gem out that he pitched on the mound or that defining day at the plate, he seemed to top it the next time out and just write another chapter,” Hamburg head coach Derek Hill said of the 2022 Colpoys-Barrow winner. “It kept building and building throughout the year until we’re here, recognizing just a tremendous overall season start to finish.

“He did things on the field that we may never see again in a Hamburg jersey. Although, with him coming back next year, he’s sure to make a push to top it all. He’s already set new goals and he’s ready to take on some new challenges,” Coach Hill said.

Along with giving out the Colpoys-Barrow Cup, the Coach of the Year award was presented to Depew head coach Dennis Crawley, who led his Wildcats to the program’s first Section VI title in 51 years.

Crawley has been battling ALS for the last year. Tonight, it was announced that starting this year and for every ensuing year, the honor will be named the Dennis Crawley Coach of the Year award.

“Now I’m going to tear up again too. It means everything, it really does. The dedication, the work I put into it and everything else,” Depew head coach Dennis Crawley said. “Myself, I just wake up every morning and look forward to getting on the diamond and coaching, teaching the kids something new, having fun at the same time and yelling, too. That’s all part of the game. The kids always tell me, you know when coach is in a good mood right away when I come walking up to the dugout if I’m yelling or not.

“But to have the award named after you, when they called me and told me they were thinking about doing it, at first I was like ‘eh, I really don’t want that,’ but after thinking about it, it’s a legacy. It’s something that my name will be somewhere for a long time hopefully. It’ll mean something. I guess it’s pretty cool.”