PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania baseball team has announced its 2018 schedule, featuring a season-opening series at Northwestern State and an eight-game stretch in South Carolina prior to diving into the Ivy League’s new 21-game format. Penn is slated to play 15 home games across 11 dates at Meiklejohn Stadium this spring, where the Quakers played to a 12-4 record a season ago.
“Opening our season in Louisiana and South Carolina gives our team a great test early in the season,” fifth-year head coach John Yurkow remarked. “Additionally, the new Ivy League format will be a welcomed change and, in turn, will make our conference more competitive. More importantly, this schedule implementation insures the two best teams will play for the conference title – and the NCAA Tournament bid – at season’s end.”
Following the three-game set at Northwestern State February 23-25, the Quakers make another trip south the following weekend for series at Wofford (Mar. 2-4), Furman (Mar. 6-7) and USC-Upstate (Mar. 9-11). All four series mark the first meeting between the Quakers and each respective program.
Penn’s home-opener is scheduled for Mar. 17 in the front end of a home-and-home set with Fairleigh Dickinson prior to hosting Lehigh before the opening weekend of Ivy League play.
The Ivy League is moving on from its two-division format of the last 25 seasons, and instead each Ancient Eight team will play a three-game series against one another. Instead of playing either one doubleheader or two against a single opponent – dependent on division affiliation – the series will be set up with two nine-inning games on Saturday followed by a single game Sunday. Since the Red Rolfe and Lou Gehrig Divisions are no longer, the two teams atop the conference standings at season’s end will square off in the best-of-three Ivy League Championship Series, hosted by the team with the best record.
Penn begins its Ivy League slate hosting Brown (Mar. 24-25) and Dartmouth (Mar. 31-Apr. 1) in the first two weekends, before road trips to both Harvard (Apr. 7-8) and Princeton (Apr. 14-15). The Quakers’ final home Ivy weekend is with Cornell (Apr. 21-22) before rounding out the season at Columbia (Apr. 28-29) and defending Ivy League Champion Yale (May 12-13).
The Quakers match up with fellow Philadelphia Big 5 member Saint Joseph’s in the first round of the 2018 Liberty Bell Classic. Penn will also host the second round of the tournament on April 3. This season also marks the first time the Quakers are scheduled to play all Philadelphia Big 5 member institutions schools since the 2012 campaign.
Penn wraps up its fall schedule Saturday, October 21 at Saint Joseph’s.