DAVIS, Calif. – With a season-opening Causeway Cup series against Sacramento State and games against four teams who advanced to the NCAA Division I Championship, the 2011 baseball schedule has been announced by UC Davis head coach Rex Peters.
UC Davis opens the 2011 campaign with a weekend series against crosstown rival Sacramento State from Feb. 18-20. UC Davis will host the first and third games at Dobbins Baseball Complex, while the middle game will be played at Hornet Field. The Aggies claimed the 2010 edition of the rivalry series after taking two games over the Hornets.
A key nonconference series for UC Davis will be a weekend homestand against 2008 national champion Fresno State Mar. 4-6. The Bulldogs finished the 2010 season as the Western Athletic Conference regular-season champions with an overall record of 38-25 and advanced to the championship game of the WAC Tournament. UC Davis and Fresno State met last season and the Aggies picked up a win in the third game of the series after 2011 returnee Scott Lyman pitched a complete game and gave up only two runs.
The Aggies then participate in the Jack Gifford Memorial Tournament Mar. 10-13, hosted by Santa Clara and San Jose State, and will round out the nonconference portion of the schedule with a three-game series against San Jose State Mar. 25-27.
UC Davis also faces Pac-10 opponents Stanford and Cal in midweek single-game matchups throughout the season, hosting the Cardinal Mar. 21 and the Golden Bears May 21. Stanford advanced to the NCAA Baseball Tournament after compiling a 31-25 record while Cal also advanced to the postseason with a 29-25 overall record and a 13-14 mark in the Pac-10.
A three-game home series against Cal State Bakersfield, who claimed a 2-1 series win last season, is scheduled for April 15-17.
Peters focused the nonconference slate on regional and Northern California opponents in an effort to reduce travel costs, while ensuring the Aggies will continue to play at a high level of competition.
“It is still a very competitive schedule,” said Peters. “West coast and California opponents, in particular, are always very strong teams that play at a consistently high level. All of these teams are good baseball programs that we know will field competitive ball clubs.”
UC Davis’ Big West Conference schedule begins April 1-3 when the Aggies host 2010 regular season champion Cal State Fullerton. The Titans were the No. 1 seed at the Fullerton Regional and were the only Big West Conference team to advance into a Super Regional.
The Aggies will travel to Long Beach State April 8-10 and will also visit UC Irvine, who also advanced to a regional in last year’s NCAA Baseball Championship, Apr. 21-23. Cal State Northridge visits Dobbins Baseball Complex Apr. 29-May 1 before the Aggies travel to play back-to-back road series at Pacific (May 6-8) and Cal Poly (May 13-15).
UC Davis will close out the 2011 season hosting consecutive conference series against UC Santa Barbara May 20-22 and UC Riverside May 27-29.
The Aggies concluded the 2010 season, their third complete season as a member of Division I, with a 26-29 overall record and a 9-15 Big West record. David Popkins was named to the All-Big West Conference first team while Matthew Lewis earned a second team nod. Lyman received honorable mention accolades.