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North Florida releases 2011 Schedule

FROM CBB NEWS SOURCE

SmokeLavalUNFJACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The University of North Florida officially announced the 2011 baseball schedule that consists of 55 games, including 26 games at Dusty Rhodes Field at Harmon Stadium.

“I feel like we have put together a challenging schedule this season,” head coach Smoke Laval stated. “We have a good balance of games at home and games on the road this season. We play eight games against teams that played in NCAA Regionals last season, including Florida who made it all the way to Omaha [for the College World Series]. Also, we start Atlantic Sun play early this year so right out of the gate the intensity level will be raised. I think this will be a fun season for UNF baseball.”

The Ospreys open up the Smoke Laval Era on the road with a three-game series at Charleston Southern. The season-opener for North Florida is slated for Friday, Feb. 18.

Following the opening road weekend, North Florida plays its next 12 games at home.

UNF’s home opener will be Friday, Feb. 25, as the Ospreys welcome Liberty to town for a four-game series. The series opens Friday and continues with a doubleheader Saturday, Feb. 26. The final game of the series is slated for Sunday, Feb. 27.

The Ospreys continue the homestand with a midweek game Wednesday, Mar. 2, against Georgia Southern. On the weekend of Mar. 4-6, North Florida opens Atlantic Sun Conference play with reigning A-Sun regular season champion Florida Gulf Coast. Following the weekend against FGCU, the Ospreys take on Wagner in a midweek game on Wednesday, March 9. The Ospreys close out the homestand with a three-game conference series Mar. 11-13 against East Tennessee State.

After the opening homestand, the Ospreys hit the road for five games. On Mar. 15-16, UNF takes on UNC-Wilmington, and then continues the road trip with a three-game A-Sun Conference series against USC Upstate, Mar. 18-19.

Following the road swing, North Florida plays six of the next seven games at home. The homestand starts with a pair of games against 2010 NCAA Regional participant FIU (Mar. 22-23). After the midweek series with the Golden Panthers, the Ospreys return to Atlantic Sun Conference play with three games against Belmont beginning Friday, Mar. 25. After five games at home, the Ospreys head to Daytona Beach for a game against 2010 NCAA Regional participant Bethune-Cookman (Mar. 29) before returning to Harmon Stadium for a single game against USF (Mar. 30).

The Ospreys hit the road for seven consecutive road games to open April, including six Atlantic Sun Conference games. UNF starts the road stretch with three games in Nashville, Tenn. against Lipscomb (Apr. 1-3). The road trip continues with the Ospreys taking on Campbell (Apr. 8-9) in Buies Creek, N.C. The road trip concludes with a midweek game against Georgia Southern (Apr. 13).

North Florida returns to Harmon Stadium for five games, including four games against NCAA Regional teams. The weekend of April 15-17, UNF welcomes the 2010 Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament champion Mercer Bears to Jacksonville for a three game series. Following the series with Mercer, UNF plays a pair of midweek contests at home against Savannah State (Apr. 19) and Bethune-Cookman (Apr. 20).

The Ospreys next nine ballgames are on the road beginning with a series at in-state foe Stetson (Apr. 29-May 1) followed by a trip to Columbus, Ohio for a pair of midweek games against Ohio State (May 3-4).

Following the midweek series with the Buckeyes, the Ospreys battle crosstown rival Jacksonville in the 2011 edition of the SunTrust River City Rumble. The series starts Friday, May 6, at John Sessions Stadium at Alexander Brest Field. For the second consecutive year, the second game of the UNF/JU series will be played at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville (May 7). The two teams return to Sessions Stadium for the conclusion of the series Sunday, May 8.

North Florida heads to Gainesville to face off against 2010 College World Series participant Florida Gators on Wednesday, May 11.

Long-time UNF rival Kennesaw State come to Jacksonville on May 13-15 to close out the home schedule for North Florida.

The final four regular season games of the year are on the road as UNF plays USF in Tampa on May 17, before traveling to New Orleans to close out the regular season against UNO (May 19-21).

The Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament will again be held in Nashville, Tenn. on the campus of Lipscomb University. The tournament is slated for Wednesday, May 24 through Saturday, May 28.

Full 2011 North Florida Schedule