FROM CBB NEWS SOURCE
WICHITA, Kan. – The Wichita State baseball team will face seven 2008 NCAA postseason teams and five teams ranked in the final 2008 polls in 2009, head coach Gene Stephenson announced Oct. 27.
“We are excited about this year’s home baseball schedule for our season ticket holders and fans, which features non-conference games against Pepperdine, Long Beach State, BYU and Oral Roberts along with the traditional Big 12 schools and MVC games,” said Eric Sexton, WSU Director of Athletics.
The Shockers begin the 2009 season where they ended the 2008 season – in the state of Florida. WSU will play Temple, Florida Gulf Coast and Central Michigan in a tournament in Fort Myers, Fla., hosted by FGCU on Feb. 20-22.
WSU then opens the home portion of its schedule with five-straight games, three against North Dakota State on Feb. 27-March 1 and two against BYU, March 2-3.
WSU again hits the road for a three-game series at 2008 NCAA Tourney participant TCU in Fort Worth, Texas, March 6-8. The Shockers defeated the Horned Frogs in the first game of the Stillwater Regional a year ago and they were knocked out of the tournament by Oklahoma State. TCU finished the season ranked 23rd by Baseball America and 26th by Collegiate Baseball.
After a road trip to Lawrence, Kan., on March 11 to take on the Jayhawks, the Shockers return home for nine-straight games, six of those against 2008 postseason teams. 2008 NCAA Tourney participant Pepperdine is at Eck Stadium for a three-game series March 13-15 followed by three games against Arkansas-Pine Bluff March 17-18. WSU finishes the home stand with a three-game series against 2008 NCAA Tourney participant Long Beach State March 20-22. The Dirtbags finished the season ranked 29th by Collegiate Baseball, 20th by USA Today/ESPN, 22nd by the NCBWA and 25th by Baseball America.
The Shockers next play one of two road games in Tulsa, Okla., against 2008 NCAA Tourney participant Oral Roberts on March 24. WSU also plays there on April 28. ORU plays at Eck Stadium on April 29 and May 5. The Golden Eagles finished the season ranked 24th by the NCBWA.
Missouri Valley Conference play gets underway for the Shocks on March 27-29 in Peoria, Ill., against Bradley and when WSU returns home they face 2008 NCAA Tourney participant Nebraska at Eck Stadium on March 31. The Huskers finished the season ranked 20th by Baseball America and the NCBWA, 22nd by Collegiate Baseball and 23rd by USA Today/ESPN.
The final two 2008 NCAA Tournament participants on WSU’s schedule are Oklahoma and Oklahoma State. The Shockers host the Sooners on April 8 and travel to Norman, Okla., on April 22, while WSU hosts the Cowboys on April 21. OSU finished the season ranked 17th by Baseball America and the NCBWA and 18th by Collegiate Baseball and USA Today/ESPN.
Other teams that will visit Eck Stadium in 2009 include Illinois State (April 3-5), Evansville (April 10-12), Kansas State (April 15), Indiana State (May 1-3), Kansas (May 6) and Creighton (May 14-16).
Wichita State will also play host to the 2009 State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Tournament for the 19th time, May 20-23.
“After back-to-back Super Regional appearances, we will feature a team with many new faces that will look to carry on the tradition of Shocker baseball,” Sexton said.
“We have a very, very challenging schedule with an extremely young and inexperienced team,” Stephenson said. “We have a tremendous task in front of us in order to compete favorably with the teams on our schedule. We look forward to the opportunity.”