FROM CBB NEWS SOURCE
CHARLOTTE — The Charlotte 49ers will face four teams that made the NCAA Tournament, including a pair of NCAA Super Regional participants and one team that advanced to the College World Series last season on the 2010 Charlotte baseball schedule, announced today.
Charlotte will play 23 of its first 28 games in the friendly confines of Robert and Mariam Hayes Stadium, which opened on March 30, 2007. Charlotte is 59-20 at home in that span (.747 winning percentage) overall and 28-11 in conference games (.718 winning percentage) at home since 2007.
Charlotte is one of just 17 teams in the country with a Top-75 winning percentage (.600 or greater) in each of the past four seasons. Charlotte is 160-70 in the past four seasons, a winning percentage of .695, which is ninth in the country in that span. Charlotte was one of only three programs that boast a Top 10% Academic Progress Rate number and a Top 10 winning percentage in college baseball in the past three seasons.
"We have put together a schedule that will force our team to mature quickly and one that our players are excited about," said Charlotte head coach Loren Hibbs, who enters his 18th season at Charlotte with 528 career victories. "Our league has improved and we will be challenged each and every weekend during conference play. From a fan’s perspective, this is a tremendous opportunity to see many quality programs right here in Charlotte."
Charlotte and High Point begin the season with a home-and-home weekend series. The Niners will travel to Willard Stadium, which also opened in 2007, for a season-opening game there on Friday, February 19. The two teams will then play in the Niners’ home opener on Saturday the 20th. Both games start at 4 p.m.
Charlotte then hosts Western Carolina on Tuesday the 23rd. In March, the first weekend series will feature a home matchup with Marist, which earned an NCAA postseason berth by way of winning the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Tournament last season.
On March 16th, Charlotte hosts NCAA Super Regional participant Clemson for a 6 p.m. home contest, the first night home game of the season.
The Niners host five Atlantic 10 Conference teams in 2010, beginning with St. Bonaventure on Friday, March 26th. The Niners also host Massachusetts, 2009 A-10 champion Dayton, Temple and Saint Louis. Charlotte will travel to 2009 A-10 Tournament champion Xavier in May.
The Niners will host Winthrop on April 14, and a pair of Atlantic Coast Conference regulars later that month. The Niners entertain Wake Forest on April 20, and College World Series participant North Carolina on April 28.
Charlotte plays at Wake Forest on March 30 and makes a trip to Chapel Hill to take on the Tar Heels on May 18.
Charlotte has made a habit of key road victories. The Niners have defeated a team ranked in the Top Five on the road in each of the last two seasons. The Niners took out No. 3 South Carolina 11-2 in Columbia on March 5, 2008 and captured a 2-1 victory at No. 5 North Carolina in Chapel Hill on March 25, 2009.
The Niners will face four programs for the first time ever during the 2010 season. Charlotte hosts Buffalo (February 26-28), Marist (March 5-7), Austin Peay (March 12-13) and North Carolina Central (April 21) during the season. Austin Peay has made the NCAA Tournament in two of the last four seasons out of the Ohio Valley Conference. The Niners also welcome back UNC Asheville to the schedule and make a return trip to Western Carolina for the first time in 17 seasons. Charlotte and Asheville have not played since 2001, and the Niners head to Cullowhee to face WCU for the first time since a double header there in February of 1993.
"We are excited about the opportunity to compete against many high level programs and the challenges that lie ahead for the 2010 season," said Hibbs.
The 2010 Atlantic 10 Tournament returns to Campbell’s Field (where Charlotte won the 2008 A-10 title) in Camden, N.J., home of the Camden Riversharks professional baseball club.