Bulldogs Open SoCon Tourney Against College of Charleston
THE SOUTHERN CONFERENCE TOURNAMENT
#7 THE CITADEL (24-31, 13-17 SoCon)
VS. #2 COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON (37-18, 21-9 SoCon)
Location: Greenville, S.C.
Stadium: Fluor Field
Series: The Citadel 58-46
Trend: CofC W5
Radio: Sports Radio 1450 AM in Charleston with play-by-play announcer Danny Reed
Live Blog: Cover It Live on CitadelSports.com
Internet: Live Stats and Video on SoConSports.com
PROBABLE STARTERS – WEDNESDAY
CIT: RHP #5 Austin Pritcher, 6-5, 3.21 ERA, 92.2 IP, 26 BB, 58 K
COFC: RHP #20 Christian Powell, 9-3, 2.32 ERA, 85.1 IP, 24 BB, 69 K
BULLDOGS FACE LOWCOUNTRY RIVAL COFC IN OPENING ROUND
The Citadel returns to the Southern Conference tournament after a one-year hiatus to face local rival College of Charleston in Wednesday's opening round at 10:00 a.m. The Bulldogs finished seventh in the conference after dropping the final series of the regular season at Elon. The Cougars, who earned a share of their fourth conference crown since 2004 with a win at UNCG on Saturday coupled with Appalachian State's loss at Western Carolina, earned the second seed in the SoCon tourney via tiebreaker. The two crosstown rivals have not met in the tournament since 2006 when the Cougars defeated the Bulldogs 5-4 in the championship game.
CREAM OF THE CROP
The Citadel's Kevin Connell and Mason Davis were named to the Southern Conference All-Freshman Team as announced Monday by the conference office. A left-handed pitcher from Johnson City, Tenn., Connell has posted a 1-4 record in his freshman campaign with a 3.79 ERA in 10 starts over 19 appearances. The southpaw has tossed 57 innings, allowing 61 hits and striking out 32 with 34 walks. Davis, the Bulldogs' second baseman, is one of three Citadel players to start in the same defensive position for all 55 games this season. The Conyers, Ga, native is batting .259 with nine doubles, three triples and three home runs. He has 24 RBI to go with 18 walks and 14 stolen bases.
Elon scored three runs in the bottom of the seventh to break a 1-1 ballgame and The Citadel was unable to score with the bases loaded in the ninth as the Phoenix held on for a 4-2 victory and a sweep of the Bulldogs in Southern Conference action Friday afternoon at Latham Park. Knotted at 1-1 after solo home runs by Mason Davis and Elon's Alex Swim in the fourth inning, Elon (31-24, 20- 10) plated three runs in the bottom of the seventh to open a 4-1 lead. Swim opened the frame with a single to shallow right and Tyler Griffin's throw to the infield sailed over the head of Bo Thompson at first, allowing Swim to advance to second on the error. A wild pitch by Logan Cribb moved Swim to third and a RBI double down the left-field line by Sebastian Gomez plated Swim with the go-ahead run. One out later, back-to-back RBI doubles by Jake Luce and Sam Paone gave the Phoenix a three-run cushion. After Ryan Hines set down Elon in order in the eighth, The Citadel threatened early in the ninth. Justin Mackert led off with a single through the left side and Joe Jackson followed with a base hit to right. A sacrifice bunt by Bo Thompson moved Mackert and Jackson into scoring position and a four-pitch walk to Griffin loaded the bases. Richards battled at the plate to a 2-2 count, but his grounder up the middle deflected off Elon closer Nate Young and started a 1-4-6-3 double play to end the game.
After scoring two runs in the top of the seventh to knot the game at five, The Citadel surrendered 13 runs over next two frames to hand Elon an 18-5 victory in Southern Conference action Thursday night at Latham Park. Using RBI singles from Justin Mackert and Bo Thompson to knot the game at 5-5 in the top of the seventh, the Bulldogs then gave up three runs in the bottom of the frame as Elon responded to take the 8-5 lead. With one away and a runner on first, Chris Bresnahan dropped a single down the right-field line to put runners at the corners. Eric Serra followed with a RBI single through the right side of the infield to drive in the go-ahead run. A failed pickoff at first by Zach Sherrill allowed Bresnahan to score from third and Serra would later score on a single by Alex Swim. The Phoenix put up 10 runs in the eighth inning to put the game out of reach. Elon recorded nine of its 14 walks in the bottom of the eighth, including five coming with the bases loaded. In the frame, Elon posted two hits - a two-run single from Quinn Bower and a RBI single by Casey Jones and used one Bulldog error.
Austin Pritcher struck out five Elon batters over eight innings, but the Phoenix capitalized on two Citadel errors and handed the Bulldogs a 2-1 defeat in their Southern Conference series opener Wednesday evening at Latham Park. Pritcher tossed his second complete game of the season, suffering the hard-luck defeat to fall to 6-5 on the season. The junior scattered five hits and walked three, allowing two unearned runs to drop his ERA to 2.95. Nick Orvin led the Bulldogs with two of the team's four hits. Grant Richards had the lone RBI in the game. Dylan Clark was solid on the mound for Elon, completing a fantastic pitcher's duel with Pritcher for the fans in attendance. Clark went 8.1 innings, allowing one run on four hits with four strikeouts and walking none to improve to 9-3. Nate Young recorded the final two outs for his ninth save. Quinn Bower had two hits, including the game-winning RBI for the Phoenix.
College of Charleston went 2-1 against UNC Greensboro last week to finish at 37-18 overall and 21-9 in the SoCon, making the Cougars regular season co-champions with Appalachian State. Dick Howser Trophy semifinalist and SoCon Player of the Year Marty Gantt leads the Cougars with a .369 average and has 10 home runs, 40 RBI and 25 stolen bases on the season, while SoCon Pitcher of the Year Christian Powell (9-3, 2.32 ERA) will be on the mound for Cougars on Wednesday.
With a four-hit performance in the Bulldogs' 10-3 victory over Winthrop on April 17, Nick Orvin became the fifth player in Citadel history to reach the 300-hit plateau. Orvin stands at 319 hits and is currently in third place all-time. The 319 hits also ranks third among active SoCon players, behind Western Carolina's Ross Heffley and Georgia Southern's Eric Phillips, and is good for eighth all-time in the conference.
THE 700 CLUB
With the Bulldogs' 3-0 win over UNC Greensboro on April 13, head coach Fred Jordan became the 36th active member of the 700-win club of NCAA Division I head coaches. In his 21st season, Jordan is 710-536 all-time at the helm of the Citadel program. Jordan had 686 victories entering this, his 21st, season of Citadel baseball.
ALL THE WAY AUSTIN
Austin Pritcher tossed a complete-game four-hitter on April 13 to give head coach Fred Jordan his 700th career victory as The Citadel blanked UNC Greensboro 3-0 to open their three-game Southern Conference series at Riley Park. Pritcher was magnificent on the mound, striking out nine Spartans and scattering four hits, walking none. The complete-game shutout was the first for The Citadel since Matt Talley did it against UNCG on May 15, 2010 and was Pritcher's first complete-game effort.
ORVIN CLIMBING THE CHARTS
Senior Nick Orvin is steadily making his mark on the Bulldogs' record book in his final season. The Moncks Corner, S.C. native is posed to overtake the top spot in the career runs and hits charts this season.
1. Philip Hartig 229 1998-01
2. Terrence Smalls 222 1995-98
3. Nick Orvin 216 2009-Current
4. Chris Swauger 211 2005-08
5. Bryan Altman 208 2007-10
1. Philip Hartig 360 1998-01
2. Sonny Meade 355 2006-09
3. Nick Orvin 319 2009-Current
4. Chris Swauger 314 2006-09
5. Bryan Altman 310 2007-10
OUR JOE JACKSON WEARS SHOES
Sophomore catcher Joe Jackson is the great-great-great nephew of one of the most beloved players in baseball history, "Shoeless" Joe Jackson. Jackson, played in the major leagues from 1908-1920, playing for the Chicago White Sox from 1915-1920 and posting a career batting average of .356 in 1,332 games.
HE'S GOT CLASS - LOWE'S SENIOR CLASS
Senior outfielder Nick Orvin was one of 30 NCAA baseball student-athletes named as a candidate for the 2012 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition. Orvin has been named to the Dean's List every semester, earning the honor eight times for holding a GPA of over 3.25 or higher. He graduated two weeks ago with a 3.8 overall GPA in Health and Wellness and was a 2011 Capital One Academic All-District 3 second team selection.
SPORTS RADIO 1450 TO BROADCAST 21 BULLDOG BASEBALL GAMES IN 2012
Citadel baseball fans will be able to follow the Bulldogs this season on Sports Radio 1450 with the "Voice of the Bulldogs," Danny Reed. The Bulldogs sport one of the region's toughest schedules with games against South Carolina, Coastal Carolina and an always-competitive Southern Conference slate.
Sports Radio 1450 will broadcast the majority of games from the second half of the Bulldogs' schedule, including home games against South Carolina and Coastal Carolina, home series with Wofford, UNC Greensboro, Georgia Southern and Furman, and road games at South Carolina and the College of Charleston. All season long, fans can watch home games online through Bulldog Insider with subscription broadcasts on CitadelSports.com.
TWO SELECTED PRESEASON ALL-SOCON; BULLDOGS PICKED EIGHTH
Drew DeKerlegand was selected to the Southern Conference preseason all-conference first team and Nick Orvin was chosen to the all-conference second team, as voted on by the league's 11 coaches. The Citadel was picked to finish eighth in both the coaches' and media preseason polls.
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