The Niners (9-2) went 2-1 on the week, taking two 1-run games from UNC Asheville and losing a 4-2 battle to unc-Chapel Hill in a mid-week road game. The Sunday game vs UNC Asheville was rained out.
In Tuesday’s game at Chapel Hill, the 49ers bats were shut down for 8 innings before charging a late rally in the 9[sup]th[/sup], bringing the tying run to the plate. After giving up 3 runs in the 1[sup]st[/sup] inning, six 49er pitchers came out of the bullpen to allow a combined 1 run.
The 49ers bats struggled against UNCA’s ace on Friday night but battled to pick up a 3-2 victory. Shane Basen drove in the winning run in the 8th. Andrew Smith pitched strong into the 6[sup]th[/sup], but reliever Ryan Mas picked up the win after going 2.1 innings of relief. Bryan Hamilton picked up the save.
Justin Seager hit his 1[sup]st[/sup] career HR and Cory Tilton added his 1[sup]st[/sup] HR of the season to provide a spark for the 49ers offense on Saturday. Cory Roberts picked up the win after going 6 strong innings allowing only 1 earned run (2 runs were unearned). Wes Hatley came in to strike out 7 of the 9 batters he faced to earn the save. There was a great crowd at the Hayes in spite of the rainy weather.
Schedule and Projected Starters:
Tuesday 4:00- SP’s: RHP [b]Tyler Barnette /b vs TTU LHP Jacob McWhirter (0-0)
Wednesday 4:00- SP’s: RHP [b]Joe Yermal/b vs TTU RHP Nick Price (0-1)
Friday 4:00- SP’s: RHP [b]Andrew Smith /b vs Ball State RHP Cal Bowling (0-1)
Saturday 2:00- SP’s: RHP [b]Corey Roberts /b vs Ball State LHP Derek Grabner (0-0)
Sunday 12:00- SP’s: RHP [b]Tyler Barnette /b vs Ball State RHP TJ Weir (1-1)
CF Cory Tilton RH
RF Justin Wilson LH
3B Shane Basen RH
2B Corey Shaylor RH
LF Tony Montalbano LH
C Ross Steedley RH
1B (Justin Seager RH, Corbin Shive RH)
DH Zach Passeralle LH
SS Justin Roland RH
Tennesse Tech Notes (4-8):
OF/LHP Chad Oberacker was highlighted as one of the top 10 seniors returning for the 2011 season by Rivals. He was drafted in the 19th Round by the Cardinals after batting .452 with 70 RBI’s and 14 SBs last season. He surprised many by returning for his final season. Oberacker was also named to 4 All American teams last season. Is also the leading career hitter for TTU with a .395 average.
The Golden Eagles were projected to finish 3rd in the Ohio Valley Conference and ranked 176 in the preseason rankings by College Baseball Today.
All Conference Candidates include Oberacker, OF Austin Wulf, OF Casanova Donaldson, and SS Chad Hayes
TTU returns all 8 starters in the field but lost most of their pitching from last season, Top newcomer is Freshman DH Zach Stephens
TTU Coach Matt Bragga has been named Tennessee Coach of the Year by Tennessee Baseball Coaches Association the past 2 seasons
RHP Tristan Archer was OVC Pitcher of the Week for week 2 of the season
Ball State Notes (1-8):
The Cardinals finished last season with an RPI of 119 were projected to finish 4[sup]th[/sup] in the Western Division of the MAC and rated 150 in the preseason College Baseball Today power rankings.
Ball State only returns 1 weekend starter in RHP Cal Bowling. Bowling, SS TJ Baumet, OF Blake Beemer, and 3B Stephen Claypool are the returning All-Conference candidates according to College Baseball Today.
This is the first season for HC Alex Marconi after being an assistant for 5 years. Greg Beals left the Cardinals last season to take the HC job at Ohio State.