FROM CBD NEWS SOURCE
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The University of North Florida baseball team announced its 2014 schedule. The 55-game schedule consists of 26 home games at Dusty Rhodes Field at Harmon Stadium and features 15 games against teams that competed in the 2013 NCAA Regionals.
The Ospreys finished the 2013 campaign with a Division I program best 40-19 record including a 24-9 mark at home. Along with its 26 home dates, UNF will play a total of 34 games within the borders of Florida.
Season tickets for Osprey Baseball went on sale on Dec. 16 and can be purchased online (UNFOspreys.com) or by calling 904-620-BIRD (2473). In addition, “Voice of the Ospreys” Robert Harper is scheduled to broadcast 25 games on 1010 XL (AM), the exclusive radio broadcasting partner for UNF Athletics in Jacksonville. Similar to the past few seasons, North Florida games on weekdays will generally be played at 6:00 p.m. with weekend contests slated for 1:00 p.m.
“We are excited about the schedule we have put together for this season,” said fourth-year UNF head coach Smoke Laval. “We will have the opportunity to compete against several teams that participated in the postseason last year including North Carolina, who were one game from the championship series. We feel like this schedule will prepare us for another competitive season in the Atlantic Sun Conference. Our fans should be excited about the quality of opponents we are bringing to Harmon Stadium.”
North Florida opens the 2014 season playing its first 10 games inside the state including nine home games. UNF hosts NCAA Regional participant Liberty in the season debut on Feb. 14 at 3 p.m. The Ospreys will also face Missouri in a doubleheader on Feb. 15 and Richmond for a single game Feb. 16 to round out the opening weekend of play at Harmon Stadium.
The Ospreys lone road tilt in the season opening stretch is a midweek contest in Gainesville, Fla., against Florida on Feb. 19. UNF concludes its home stand with a three-game weekend set versus Fairfield (Feb. 21-23) and a midweek pair with NCAA participant Florida Atlantic (Feb. 25-26).
A three-game series against national semifinalist North Carolina (Feb. 28-Mar. 1) marks the first weekend road trip for the Ospreys. UNF will also play a three-game set in Athens, Ga., against Western Carolina (Mar. 7), Georgia (Mar. 8) and Buffalo (Mar. 9) before visiting Georgia Southern (Mar. 11) in the first of two meetings between the teams.
Two games against Bethune-Cookman surround the Ospreys’ Atlantic Sun Conference opening series with USC Upstate. UNF hosts the Wildcats on Mar. 12 and make a return visit to Daytona Beach (Mar. 18), while welcoming the Trojans on Mar. 14-16.
The Ospreys begin a home-and-home set with Savannah State hosting the Tigers on Mar. 19 and playing at SSU on Mar. 26. In between those games, UNF visits A-Sun rival Northern Kentucky (Mar. 21-23) and faces Georgia Southern for a rematch in Jacksonville on Mar. 25.
A three-game series against NCAA regional participant Mercer in Macon, Ga., on Mar. 28-30 closes out the month. The Ospreys open April with a four game home stand beginning Apr. 1 against UCF, followed by the SunTrust River City Rumble contests with crosstown rival Jacksonville on Apr. 4-6 at Harmon Stadium.
Seven of UNF’s next eight games will be on the road starting with a single game at Florida A&M (Apr. 9). The road stretch also includes trips to A-Sun Champion ETSU (Apr. 11-13) and FGCU (Apr. 17-19). The team’s lone home game comes Apr. 15 in a third meeting with Bethune-Cookman.
The Ospreys conclude play in April with a three-game home series against Stetson (Apr. 25-27) followed by single game road trips to in-state rivals USF (Apr. 29) and UCF (Apr. 30).
North Florida visits Georgia Tech (May 6) to open the final month of the regular season. The Ospreys home series finale comes May 9-11 against Lipscomb before renewing the program’s longest standing rivalry, Kennesaw State, on May 15-17 in Kennesaw, Ga., to wrap up the regular season slate. The Ospreys and Owls have met on the baseball diamond nearly every year since North Florida’s inaugural season in 1988 – 66 total games.
The 2014 Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament will be held on May 21-25. The following weekend (May 30-June 1) begins NCAA Regional action with NCAA Super Regionals held on campus sites on June 6-8. The College World Series returns to Omaha, Neb. on June 13-25.