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Seton Hall releases 2017 Schedule

SOUTH ORANGE, N.J. – Seton Hall head coach Rob Sheppard announced today the 2017 baseball schedule, which features at least 54 games, including 18 BIG EAST contests and 17 games against 2016 NCAA Tournament participants.
Additionally, the Pirates will play 19 home games at Owen T. Carroll Field in 2017 beginning with the annual Strike Out Cancer Classic, March 17-19.  The Hall will host Brown, Lehigh and Manhattan that weekend.
As is typical with college baseball teams in the Northeast, the Pirates will play the majority of their early season, non-conference games on the road.  Seton Hall will open the year with their first 15 games away from Owen T. Carroll Field.  Nine of those 15 games however, will be played at neutral sites.
To begin the 2017 campaign, Seton Hall will play four games over three days in Fort Myers, Fla., Feb. 17-19, against the University of Michigan.  The Wolverines are coming off a strong 36-21 campaign in 2016.  They were considered an NCAA “bubble” team, but were eliminated by Ohio State in the BIG TEN Tournament and ultimately weren’t selected for the NCAA field.  Seton Hall and Michigan have met twice in history, splitting the games.  Most recently, the Pirates defeated the Wolverines, 5-3, at Citi Field in 2013.
The following weekend, the Pirates will travel to Southern California for three games in the Tony Gwynn Classic, Feb. 24-26.  The Hall will play Tennessee on Friday, and host San Diego State on Saturday.  Seton Hall will play a third opponent to be determined on Sunday, Feb. 26.  Both Tennessee and San Diego State missed the NCAA Tournament in 2015.  Tennessee finished 29-28 last season.  The Pirates were swept by the Volunteers in a three-game series in 2012, the only all-time meetings of the teams.  San Diego State is coming off a rough season, collecting just 21 wins in 59 games.  The Hall is 1-3 all-time against the Aztecs, including three losses to them during a series in 2013.
Seton Hall will return to Florida for its Spring Break trip, March 3-12.  The Pirates will play eight games, seven of which will be against teams that made the NCAA Tournament last season. 
Their first stop will be at the Cox Diamond Invitational in Pensacola, Fla., March 3-5.  The Hall will face Southeastern Louisiana, Troy and South Alabama.  SE Louisiana is coming off a 40-win season and earned an at large bid to the NCAA Regionals.  Troy went 32-26 in 2016, but saw its season end in the Sun Belt Tournament.  South Alabama won 42 games last season and earned an at large bid to the NCAA’s out of the Sun Belt Conference.  The Jaguars won two games in the Regional before falling to Florida State in the Regional Final.  Seton Hall has never faced SE Louisiana or Troy.  The Pirates have faced South Alabama twice before, both Seton Hall victories in the 2001 NCAA Clemson Regional.
The Pirates will then travel to Deland, Fla. for a pair of games at Stetson University, March 7-8.  Despite a final record of 28-32, the Hatters went on a “Cinderella” run late last year to claim their first Atlantic Sun title since 2006 and an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.  Seton Hall and Stetson have split four previous all-time games, but they haven’t met since 1982.
Seton Hall will wrap up its Spring Break trip with three games in Gainesville, Fla. against national-power Florida.  The Gators went 52-14 last season and were the nation’s top overall seed entering the 2016 NCAA Tournament.  They made it to the College World Series before falling to Texas Tech and eventual national champion Coastal Carolina.  The Pirates and the Gators have never met.
The Pirates return home for the aforementioned Strike Out Cancer Classic, March 17-19, and will face Brown, Lehigh and Manhattan.  While The Hall has never faced Brown, it has played Lehigh in three of the last four seasons, winning two of three games.  The Pirates have won 23 of 28 all-time games against Manhattan, including the last seven.  The Hall swept the Jaspers in a three-game series at Owen T. Carroll Field last season.
The Hall’s next five games will be on the road with single contest at Lafayette and at Iona sandwiched around a three-game set at former BIG EAST foe Connecticut, March 24-26.  Seton Hall is a combined 55-6 all-time against Lafayette and Iona.  The last loss to either team came at Lafayette in 1989.  Since then, the Pirates have won 22 straight against the Leopards and Gaels.  Connecticut is coming off a 38-25 season, an American Athletic Conference title and an NCAA Tournament berth.  Seton Hall is 45-35 all-time against Connecticut.  Most recently, the Pirates dropped two of three games to the Huskies at Owen T. Carroll Field in 2015.  The Hall hasn’t traveled to Storrs, Conn. for a series since 2012.
Seton Hall will return home on March 29 for a mid-week contest against Princeton, the first game in a stretch of the season that will see the Pirates play seven of their next eight games at the friendly confines of Owen T. Carroll Field.
For a second straight year, The Hall will host LIU-Brooklyn for a three-game series, March 31-April 2.  Last spring, the Pirates won two of three games over the Blackbirds, including Shane McCarthy’s perfect game, the first in both Seton Hall and BIG EAST Conference history.  Seton Hall is 25-8 all-time against LIU and has won six of the last seven games.
After traveling to Wagner mid-week on April 5, the Pirates will begin BIG EAST Conference play with a trio of contests at Owen T. Carroll Field against Butler, April 7-9.  The Bulldogs won just four of 18 BIG EAST games in 2016, including all three of their games against Seton Hall in Indianapolis.  Seton Hall has won five of nine all-time games with Butler.
After facing the conference’s weakest 2016 team to open BIG EAST play, the Pirates will travel to Cincinnati, Ohio to face the 2016 BIG EAST champions, Xavier, April 13-15.  The Musketeers went 14-4 in conference play last year and won the BIG EAST Tournament to claim the BIG EAST’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.  Xavier lost BIG EAST Player of the Year, Andre Jernigan, to graduation, but returns First Team selections Rylan Bannon and Nate Soria.  They also bring back Joe Gellenbeck, who finished second in the BIG EAST last season with 13 home runs.  The Pirates were swept by Xavier at Owen T. Carroll Field last year.
Seton Hall will face in-state non-conference rival Rutgers for a mid-week home-and-home.  The Pirates will travel to Piscataway on Tuesday, April 18, before hosting the Scarlet Knights on Wednesday, April 19.  Rutgers is coming off a 27-28 season in 2016.  The teams split the two-game, home-and-home series last year, with each team winning by one run at home.  Seton Hall rallied for four runs in the bottom of the ninth inning before winning the game in the 10th vs. Rutgers on April 12.
Two days later, The Hall will open a three-game home series with Georgetown.  The Hoyas missed a berth in the BIG EAST Tournament by just one game, placing fifth with an 8-10 conference record in 2016.  All-BIG EAST First Team selection Simon Mathews will return for his senior year to anchor the Hoyas’ pitching staff.  The Pirates lost two of three games at Georgetown last year.
After a mid-week contest against Saint Peter’s University on April 26, the Pirates will make the short trip to Queens, N.Y. for three games at St. John’s, April 28-30.  The Red Storm claimed the No. 4 seed in last year’s BIG EAST Tournament after a 9-9 record in conference play.  Seton Hall and St. John’s split four games last season.  St. John’s lost BIG EAST Pitcher of the Year Thomas Hackimer to graduation, but returns Freshman of the Year Josh Shaw and First Team selection Michael Donadio.  The Pirates won two of three contests at Owen T. Carroll Field during the regular season, but St. John’s ended The Hall’s season with a 4-1 victory in an elimination game in the BIG EAST Tournament.
On May 5-6, the Pirates will host Creighton with the teams playing a double-header on Saturday, May 6.  The Bluejays are coming off a strong season, which boasted 38 overall victories, a 13-5 BIG EAST mark and the No. 2 seed in the conference tournament.  They return a pair of 2016 BIG EAST First Teamers, Rollie Lacy and Daniel Woodrow.  The Pirates dropped two of three games during the regular season in Omaha.  They also fell in the opening round of the BIG EAST Tournament to Creighton, 6-5, when the Bluejays rallied for three runs in the bottom of the ninth inning.
Following a mid-week contest at Rider on May 10, Seton Hall will complete its BIG EAST regular season schedule with a trio of games at Villanova, May 12-14.  The Wildcats went 5-13 last season in the BIG EAST, but return a pair of All-Conference First Team selections, Todd Czinege and Hunter Schryver.  The Pirates swept the three-game series from the Wildcats last year at Owen T. Carroll Field and have now won 10 of the last 12 meetings. 
After returning home for a mid-week contest against Monmouth on May 16, the Pirates will complete the 2016 regular season with a three-game series at Southeastern Louisiana, a team they will have already played this season during the Cox Diamond Invitational in Pensacola, Fla.    
The 2017 BIG EAST Championship will return to TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Neb., May 25-28.  Once again, the top four teams in the final BIG EAST regular season standings will qualify to compete, with the winner of the double-elimination tournament gaining an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

2017 Seton Hall Schedule

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