FROM CBB NEWS SOURCE
MONROE, La.- Three games against 2009 College World Series teams, a regular season-ending series with rival Louisiana-Lafayette and in-state matchups against LSU and Tulane highlight the 2010 ULM baseball schedule released Thursday by Warhawk head coach Jeff Schexnaider.
"I feel that we have a great schedule that our fans will enjoy and that will help our team reach a Regional," Schexnaider said. "With 15 games against teams that played in the NCAA Tournament last season, the schedule provides us with the challenges we need to accomplish our goals."
The Warhawks open the season at one of the eight Super Regional sites from last season for a three-game set against Ole Miss in Oxford, Miss., on Feb. 19-21. The series was originally scheduled for two mid-week games later in the year, but when the NCAA extended the season by one week it was moved to the beginning of the year with an extra game added.
Creighton, Stephen F. Austin and Northwestern State await the Warhawks the following weekend (Feb. 26-28) in Nacogdoches, Texas, for a round robin tournament. ULM and Creighton met two years ago in Rosenblatt Stadium to end the regular season, while the Lumberjacks and Demons are old Southland Conference foes.
ULM travels to Hattiesburg, Miss., on Mar. 3 for the first of two games on the season against Southern Mississippi, who played in the 2009 College World Series. The Warhawks have won two straight games against the Golden Eagles on their home field, including a decisive 9-2 victory last season.
The Warhawks open their 26-game Warhawk Field schedule with a three-game set against Mississippi Valley State on Mar. 5-7.
A date with the defending national champions is next for ULM as it heads down to Baton Rouge, La., for a meeting with LSU at Alex Box Stadium on Mar. 9. The Warhawks then host Memphis in the first of a home-and-home series on Mar. 10 with the Conference USA foe before opening conference play.
The Sun Belt Conference opener will be a rematch of the Sun Belt Tournament Championship Game as the Warhawks travel to Murfreesboro, Tenn., for three games against Middle Tennessee on Mar. 12-14.
A trip to Northwestern State on Mar. 15 follows the league opener and Southern Mississippi makes its return trip to Warhawk Field on Mar. 16 to open a four-game homestand. New Orleans returns to Warhawk Field for the second consecutive year Mar. 19-21 for three Sun Belt games.
ULM hits the road for five of the next six games beginning with a Mar. 23 date at Texas-Arlington. A home contest against McNeese State on Mar. 24 breaks up the road trip before the Warhawks travel to Bowling Green, Ky., for three league games at Western Kentucky. Facing elimination, the Warhawks defeated the Hilltoppers twice in the Sun Belt Tournament last year to advance to the title game.
Following a return trip to McNeese State on Mar. 30, the Warhawks play six of their next eight games in the friendly confines of Warhawk Field beginning with a Mar. 31 matchup with Grambling State. NCAA Tournament foe Binghampton is in town for three games on Apr. 2-3.
The two road contests come mid-week as the Warhawks travel to Memphis and Central Arkansas on Apr. 6-7 before hosting Arkansas State on Apr. 9-11 in a three-game Sun Belt series.
A return trip to Grambling State on Apr. 13 breaks up a string of 12 league games. The Warhawks travel to Mobile, Ala., on Apr. 16-18 for three SBC games at South Alabama before returning home Apr. 23-25 for a three-game league set against Florida International.
Staying with teams from the Sunshine State, the Warhawks fly down to Miami, Fla., for three games against league foe Florida International on Apr. 30-May 2. ULM will look for its second straight victory in New Orleans, La., over Tulane on May 4 before returning home to host Troy on May 7-9 in a three-game Sun Belt series.
The final regular season road games send the Warhawks to Little Rock, Ark., for three league games against UALR on May 14-16.
The regular season wraps up with a home game against Northwestern State on May 18 and a three-game series against Louisiana-Lafayette on May 20-22. The series against the Ragin’ Cajuns marks the first time in ULM’s four years in the Sun Belt Conference that it will play a league series during the final weekend of play.
The top eight teams in the league will meet in Murfreesboro, Tenn., on May 26-29 for the Sun Belt Conference Tournament with the winner earning the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
The 64-team NCAA Tournament follows with the Regionals (June 4-7), the Super Regionals (June 11-14) and the College World Series (June 19-30) in Omaha, Neb.