Opening Weekend Recap: Sunbelt Conference

Weekend Winners:  Middle Tennessee State was the big weekend winner, as they swept a three game home series with Missouri State.  Also posting impressive weekends were UALR, Florida Atlantic, Florida International, Louisiana-Monroe, New Orleans, Troy, and Western Kentucky.  UALR took two of three games at home against Northern Iowa, and just missed a sweep with a one run loss on Saturday.  Florida Atlantic finished the weekend with a 2-1 series record against Fordham.  Florida International posted a 20 run Saturday in route to a two games to one series victory over Jacksonville.  Louisiana-Monroe hosted the ULM  and ended the weekend with a 2-1 record.  New Orleans won the first three games of their home series against Towson before losing the Sunday finale to open the season 3-1.  Troy lost a Friday contest against Kentucky in the Caravelle Resort Invitational before winning their next three games to end the tournament at a very solid 3-1.   Western Kentucky took a single game from Toledo on Friday night, but the Saturday and Sunday meetings were canceled due to inclement weather.

So-So Weekend:  South Alabama cruised to a Friday victory over Mercer and then stunned Ole Miss in extra innings on Sunday, but it was the Saturday doubleheader sweep by Liberty that keeps them out of the “Weekend Winners.”

Weekend Losers:  Arkansas State ventured to the UT Arlington/Hilton Invitational for opening weekend, but their results were less than stellar.  Arkansas State opened the tournament with a win over Texas State before dropping their final three games of the tournament to finish 1-3 on the weekend.   There is little doubt Louisiana-Lafayette and Nebraska shared the most entertaining series of the weekend.   Louisiana-Lafayette finished the weekend 1-2-1 against the Huskers, but each game was decided by one run.  The Friday game was a fifteen inning affair where Nebraska squeaked out a 4-3 victory.  A Saturday doubleheader saw Louisiana-Lafayette take game one 2-1 before falling in game two 9-8.  The Sunday series finale finished in a 5-5 tie due to travel constraints.  Louisiana-Lafayette could have easily found themselves in the “Weekend Winners” with a few more breaks, but the Ragin’ Cajuns have to be disappointed with the final outcome of opening weekend.

Here is a quick recap of the individual team’s results from opening weekend:

Arkansas State (1-3) at UT Arlington/Hilton Invitational
Friday: Arkansas State 4, Texas State 3
UT Arlington 5, Arkansas State 4

Saturday: Siena 5, Arkansas State 1

Sunday: Texas State 3, Arkansas State 2

UALR (2-1) v. Northern Iowa

Friday: UALR 5, Northern Iowa 0

Saturday: Northern Iowa 7, UALR 6

Sunday: UALR 15, Northern Iowa 6

Florida Atlantic (2-1)v. Fordham

Friday: Florida Atlantic 8, Fordham 6

Saturday: Florida Atlantic 11, Fordham 5

Sunday: Fordham 18, Florida Atlantic 16

Florida International (2-1) v. Jacksonville

Friday: Florida International 4, Jacksonville 3

Saturday: Florida International 20, Jacksonville 1

Sunday: Jacksonville 9, Florida International 3

Louisiana-Lafayette (1-2-1) v. Nebraska

Friday: Nebraska 4, Louisiana-Lafayette 3 (15 innings)

Saturday: Louisiana-Lafayette 2, Nebraska 1

Nebraska 9, Louisiana-Lafayette 8

Sunday: Louisiana-Lafayette 5, Nebraska 5

Louisiana-Monroe (2-1)hosting ULM Warhawk Classic

Friday: Northwestern State 8, Louisiana-Monroe 3 (10 innings)

Saturday: Louisiana-Monroe 24, Stephen F. Austin 7

Sunday: Louisiana-Monroe 15, Mississippi Valley State 4

Middle Tennessee State (3-0) v. Missouri Sate

Friday: Middle Tennessee State 19, Missouri State 4

Saturday: Middle Tennessee State 12. Missouri State 6

Sunday: Middle Tennessee State 7, Missouri State 6

New Orleans (3-1)v. Towson

Friday: New Orleans 12, Towson 11

Saturday: New Orleans 7, Towson 3

New Orleans 9, Towson 8

Sunday: Towson 9, New Orleans 5

South Alabama (2-2) hosting Coca-Cola Classic

Friday: South Alabama 9, Mercer 2

Saturday: Liberty 5, South Alabama 2

Liberty 4, South Alabama 3 (10 innings)

Sunday: South Alabama 3, Ole Miss 2 (10 innings)

Troy (3-1)at Caravelle Resort Invitational (Myrtle Beach, SC)

Friday: Kentucky 8, Troy 3

Saturday: Troy 8, Southern Illinois 2

Troy 6, James Madison 3

Sunday: Troy 10, Southern Illinois 3

Western Kentucky (1-0) at Toledo

Friday: Western Kentucky 3, Toledo 1

Saturday: Postponed

Sunday: Postponed