The College Baseball Blog took some time off for the Holiday so we are catching up on some the schedules that we missed that were released over the last week. Some of the big time programs that have released a schedule are Kansas led by Ritch Price expects to compete for the 2008 Big 12 title and Notre Dame who looks to return to prominence under second year head coach Dave Schrage. The links to schedules are available below.
Kendall Rogers of Rivals.com has released an article about fall story lines around the Big East conference. The article discusses how Louisville’s run to the CWS will impact the conference. Some people around the country forget that Louisville finished in third place in 2007 behind Rutgers and St. John’s. It also discusses how the uniform start date will impact the conference but all schools need to put some money into their respective program. It also mentions how South Florida is one of the programs to watch in the Big East in 2008 and beyond. The full article is available here.
The Marist baseball program will welcome eight new players for the 2008 season including three transfers. Chris Wojick from Maine, B.J. Martin from St. John’s, and Zach Starkey from Wabash Valley College will join five freshman in the Red Fox program. The full release is available here.
St. John’s 5 VCU 4
Chris Anninos hit two homers including the walk-off homer to lead the Red Storm to a 5-4 victory over VCU 5-4. VCU scored a run in the top of the ninth to tie the game at four before Anninos hit the walkoff homer. St. John’s advances in the loser’s bracket to take on Coastal Carolina at 7 pm on Sunday while VCU ends the season with a 37-23 record.
St. John’s Recap
Clemson 11 Coastal Carolina 8
The Clemson Tigers advanced to the Regional Championship game on Monday by knocking off Coastal Carolina 11-8. Andy D’ Alessio led the Tigers by getting three hits including two doubles and a homer while driving in four runs. Clemson will play the winner of the St. John’s/Coastal Carolina elimination game on Monday while Coastal plays St. John’s later tonight.
Coastal Carolina Recap
St. John’s vs Coastal Carolina at 7:30 pm
Clemson 3 St. John’s 2
The Clemson Tigers scored two runs in the bottom of the ninth to walk-off with a 3-2 victory over St. John’s. Brad Chaulk hit a single with two outs in the bottom of the ninth to break a 2-2 tie and give the Tigers the walk-off victory. The Tigers will face Coastal Carolina in the winner’s bracket on Saturday while St. John’s will play VCU.
St. John’s Recap
Coastal Carolina 7 VCU 1
The Coastal Carolina Chanticleers picked up a 7-1 victory over VCU to advance in the winner’s bracket. Coastal Carolina was led by Tommy Baldridge who went 2-4 with two RBI. Bobby Gagg let up one run in 7.1 innings and picked up the win. Coastal Carolina will take on Clemson in the winner’s bracket while VCU will play St. John’s in an elimination game.
Coastal Carolina Recap
Coastal Carolina was selected to host an NCAA Regional in Myrtle Beach SC at the home of the Myrtle Beach Pelicans. They will be joined by Clemson, St. John’s, and Virginia Commonwealth.
Coastal Carolina comes in as a number 1 seed and hosting the Regional for the first time after going 48-11 this spring. They are led by David Sappelt who is hitting .366 with 49 RBI. Coastal Carolina’s top starting pitcher is Bobby Gagg who went 11-2 with a 2.75 ERA. They open up against Virginia Commonwealth at 4 pm on Friday.
Coastal Carolina Tourney Notes
The Tigers (38-21) enter the weekend after winning two out of three games in the ACC Tournament but did not advance as they lost the tiebreaker to Wake Forest. They are led by Brad Chaulk who has a .385 average in forty games this season. He is also getting on base at a .514 clip. The Tigers are led by All-American closer Daniel Moskos who was moved to the starting rotation halfway through the year. He has a 3-5 record with a 3.12 ERA. Clemson opens the tournament against St. John’s at noon on Friday.
Clemson Tourney Notes
The Red Storm (40-17) recieved an at-large berth out of the Big East. Gil Zayas is leading the team in hitting with a .363 batting average. Bryan Kemp also has a .361 batting average to give the Red Storm two solid hitters. George Brown has made 13 starts this season accumulating a 6-2 record and a 2.93 ERA.
St. John’s Tourney Notes
The Rams (37-21) are led by Jared Bolden who has a .393 average with 49 RBI. He has also stolen 17 bases throughout the season. Phillip Deane leads the starters in ERA at 4.02. He only has a 3-5 record on the season. Luke Pisker leads the team in ERA at 1.87 and has a 9-1 overall record including 11 saves.
VCU Tourney Notes
The CBB predicts that Clemson will come through the regional with superior talent.
UConn 8 St. John’s 7 (Final)
UConn senior first baseman Matt Untiet hit a solo home run to left field in the bottom of the ninth to give the Huskies an 8-7 walkoff victory over St. John’s in an elimination game. Matt Karl (2-2) pitched a scoreless top of the ninth to get the victory. Colin Lynch (1-1) got the loss for the Red Storm by giving up two runs in 2.2 innings. St. John’s is eliminated from the tournament and will await a possible NCAA tourney berth while UConn will play USF on Friday at 1 pm. The Huskies have to knock off USF twice tomorrow to advance to the Big East Championship game.
St. John’s Recap
Rutgers 11 Villanova 0
The Rutgers Scarlet Knights got a fabulous start from Matt Giannini who pitched a complete game while scattering eleven hits as they cruised to an 11-0 victory over Villanova in an elimination game. Todd Frazier went 4-6 with two RBI and three runs scored. Villanova ends their season with a 29-25 record while Rutgers takes on Louisville at 10 am and need to beat the Cardinals twice to advance to the championship game on Saturday.
Remember, The Big East is providing free webcasts which can be accessed by clicking here.
Villanova 3 Notre Dame 2
Jim Gillin hit a solo homer in the fourth inning which proved to be the winning run as the Villanova Wildcats eliminated Notre Dame from the Big East Tournament. Villanova got a solid pitching performance from Jordan Ellis as he allowed both runs in his seven innings of work. Josh Eidell picked up the save by pitching two perfect innings including a save.
Notre Dame Recap
UConn 5 Pittsburgh 2
The UConn Huskies got eight strong innings from Matt Tarsi as they knocked the Pittsburgh Panthers out of the Big East Tournament. The Huskies were led on offense by Dennis Donavan who hit a two run homer in the third inning. The Panthers top offensive threat on the day was Dan Lopez who went 3-4.
USF 2 St. John’s 0
Chris Delaney held the Red Storm to only two hits in 6.1 innings as his USF Bulls picked up a 2-0 victory over St. John’s in the Big East Tournament. Dexter Butler and Addison Maruszak each got an RBI to account for all the runs in the game. Brendan Monaghan got two hits for St. John’s as he was the only player in the game to have multiple hits.
St. John’s Recap
Louisville 8 Rutgers 1
Louisville starter Justin Marks gave up only 1 run in six innings to lead his Cardinals to an 8-1 victory over Rutgers. Kyle Hollander and Trystan Magnuson combined to pitch three scoreless innings of relief. Louisville was led on offense by Chris Dominguez who went 3-5 with 2 RBI.
The Big East is continuing their free webcast of the championships which can be viewed by clicking here.
The Big East Conference Tournament starts on Tuesday in Brooklyn NY. The top 8 teams are invited to the tournament and split into two different double elimination brackets. The two winners will meet on Saturday for a winner take all championship game. The full brackets are available here. The Big East Tournament starts at 10 am on Tuesday with Louisville taking on Villanova. At 1 pm, Rutgers will take on the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. The last two games on the opening day will take place at 5 pm with Pittsburgh playing University of South Florida and the number 1 seeded St. John’s Red Storm playing UConn at 8 pm in the nightcap. CSTV has provided a full preview of the tournament which is available at this link.
The entire tournament can be watched for free by clicking here. Thanks to the Big East for providing free video of the tournament.
FROM NCBWA RELEASE
DALLAS - The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) released the Pro-Line Athletic National Player of the Week awards for the period ending April 24, today. Oakland senior first baseman Ryan Heath was named National Hitter of the Week, while St. John's sophomore left-handed pitcher Scott Barnes was named National Pitcher of the Week. The NCBWA Board reviews candidates from each Division I conferences each week and names winners each Tuesday throughout the season.
Heath was 9-25 (.360) with 10 runs scored, two doubles, four home runs and 18 RBI for the week. In Saturday's doubleheader against Western Illinois, he hit a combined 5-7 at the plate with four home runs-including three grand slams-a double, 14 RBI and five runs scored. The Ostrander, Ohio, native was 3-3 with two grand slams, a double, a career high nine RBI and three runs scored in game one. He followed that by going 2-4 with a grand slam, a solo home run, a walk, five RBI and two runs scored in the nightcap. Prior to that day, Heath had not hit a home run this season and had never hit a grand slam. His 14 RBI more than doubled the 12 runs he'd driven home in the 30 games leading up to his career day and his nine RBI in the first game surpassed his previous best of four which he had done twice last year.
Barnes threw the first no-hitter in St. John's Head Coach Ed Blankmeyer's 12-year tenure at the school as he blanked Georgetown, 16-0, and finished with 14 strikeouts, tying his career high. He was three walks from a perfect game and threw 130 pitches in the complete-game shutout. Barnes became the first St. John's pitcher to throw a no-hitter since Gerry McKiernan did it in 1976. The Chicopee, Mass., native punched out the final batter he faced with his 130th pitch of the night on Friday, completing his no-hit bid and earning the Red Storm's second-straight shutout. He worked five 1-2-3 innings, struck out the side three times and helped his own cause by saving a hit in the Georgetown sixth.
With this week's honor, Barnes automatically are named to the watch list for Roger Clemens Award, given to the national collegiate pitcher of the year, sponsored by the Greater Houston Baseball Organization.
Fort Worth-based Pro-Line Athletic supplies the official cap to more than 100 Division I college teams and official uniforms and team wear to six Division 1 college teams. This is the third season Pro-Line has sponsored the NCBWA's Players of the Week. The sponsorship provides for plaques to be awarded to each of the weekly winners and other promotional consideration. For more information about Pro-Line, visit their Website at: www.prolineathletic.com.