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Line Drives: ASC Baseball Weekly Notebook
March 4, 2003


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Complete PDF Version of this Release

National Polls

2003 NCAA Division III ABCA/Collegiate Baseball Top 30
Preseason Poll
First Season Poll: March 24

Rank School '02 Rec. Pts.
1. Marietta (Ohio) 41-9 250
2. Eastern Connecticut State 39-11-1 248
3. College of New Jersey 36-14 245
4. Rensselaer (N.Y.) 33-11 240
5. Wooster (Ohio) 38-6 238
6. Wheaton (Mass.) 37-9-1 234
7. Carthage (Wis.) 34-11 231
  Concordia-Austin (Texas) 35-13 231
9. Aurora (Ill.) 34-6 227
10. Methodist (N.C.) 39-9-1 226
11. California Lutheran 30-10 223
12. Wisconsin-Stevens Point 37-10 220
13. Ohio Wesleyan 35-13 216
14. Univ. Dallas (Texas) 33-3 214
15. St. Thomas (Minn.) 31-12 209
16. Christopher Newport (Va.) 38-16 205
17. Pomona-Pitzer (Calif.) 36-7 202
  Alvernia (Pa.) 36-10 202
19. Lakeland (Wis.) 34-16-1 198
20. York (Pa.) 34-15 196
21. Texas Lutheran 33-6 192
22. Ripon (Wis.) 27-9 189
23. Kean (N.J.) 33-12 188
24. Johns Hopkins (Md.) 35-9 182
25. Cortland State (N.Y.) 31-11 179
26. Ithaca College (N.Y.) 27-18 175
27. William Paterson (N.J.) 26-13 173
28. Wartburg (Iowa) 29-15 170
29. Salisbury (Md.) 30-13-3 169
30. Trinity (Texas) 37-11 166
ASC Receiving Votes: Mississippi College (29-14).

Baseball America NCAA-III Top Five
Released January 23

Rank School
1. Marietta (Ohio)
2. Concordia-Austin
3. Cortland State
4. Eastern Connecticut
5. Carthage (Wis.)
(One time preseason prediction of final five CWS teams)

Around the Conference Report . . .

Last Cross-Division Weekend: The first weekend of cross-division play in the American Southwest Conference resulted in a split decision. Both divisions get the chance to make statement of superiority when the second of the two ASC cross-division weekend series are played Friday and Saturday (Mar. 7-8). . . . No. 21-ranked Texas Lutheran's sweep of East challenger Ozarks (Mar 1-2) not only kept the Bulldogs' undefeated for the season, but helped lift the West to a 9-9 tie in the cross-division match-ups.

Weather Woes Continue: The ASC region was hit with a wide variety of precipitation the last week of February, forcing schedule changes, postponements and cancellations of conference and non-conference games for a second week. One ASC series -- Schreiner at Austin College -- was cancelled by the appearance of an ice melt pond on the Kangaroos' field. . . . Fans should check the athletic websites of the conference teams for weather-related changes and additions.

Numbers and Records: This ASC website is the place to locate statistics, results and updated league standings. The information is updated throughout the week. Also posted to the website is the conference baseball records and annual results.

Line Drives . . .

Austin College (0-11, 0-0 ASC): Last week's snow, sleet and frozen rain melted slowly and created a small pond on the Kangaroos' field which forced cancellation of Austin College's conference-opening weekend series vs. Schreiner (Feb. 28-Mar. 1). . . . AC is scheduled for a Friday-Saturday series at Mary Hardin-Baylor this weekend.

Concordia-Austin (7-5, 1-2 ASC): The #7-ranked Tornados dropped two of three in its conference-opening series at East Texas Baptist last weekend. . . . CUA has a non-conference single-game at Houston Baptist on Wednesday before a scheduled ASC home series vs. Ozarks Friday and Saturday.

East Texas Baptist (6-1, 2-1 ASC): The Tigers came back from a weather-induced 17-day break to win two of three games in their ASC home-opening series against #7-ranked Concordia-Austin (Feb. 28-Mar. 1). . . . Freshman Aaron Chitwood made his case to become ETBU's ace, going head-to-head with Tornado Scott Berkman and coming away with a complete-game, six-hit 6-1 win in the CUA series-opener (Feb. 28). Chitwood struck out seven while improving to 2-0. . . . The Tigers have out-homered its opposition 7-0 in the first seven games.

Hardin-Simmons (2-4, 1-2 ASC): Second baseman John Schlaffer powered four RBI and hit 3-for-4 to help the Cowboys to a 9-6 win in the second game of last weekend's conference-opening series at Louisiana College (Mar. 1). The senior batted .462 (4-for-9) in the three games at LC. . . . Right-hander Matt Hinds worked relief in all three Louisiana College games, allowing no earned runs and two hits in 8.0 innings.

Howard Payne (4-4, 0-0 ASC): The Yellow Jackets evened their season record with a three-game home sweep of Texas College last weekend (Feb. 28-Mar. 1). . . . Junior hurler Patrick Cumbie pitched five shutout innings with five strikeouts to help HPU to a 21-2 victory in the series closer. . . . Howard Payne is at Southwestern Tuesday before hosting LeTourneau in a conference series Friday and Saturday (Mar. 7-8).

LeTourneau (6-5, 1-2 ASC): First baseman Cody Ross went 4-for-10 (.400) in last weekend's Sul Ross State series (Mar. 1-2), smacking a pair of singles and scoring a run in LeTourneau's 5-1 game two win. . . . LU travels to Howard Payne for an ASC cross-division match-up on Friday and Saturday (Mar. 7-8).

Louisiana College (9-1, 2-1 ASC): The Wildcats opened the conference season winning two of the three games against Hardin-Simmons (Feb. 28-Mar. 1). . . . Freshman hurler James Halle collected his first collegiate win in a 4-2 complete game victory vs. HSU. Halle struck out five, gave up three hits and allowed no walks in the seven-inning game. . . . David Long drove in seven runs over the HSU series to increase his team-leading season total to 16 RBI.

Mary Hardin-Baylor (4-6, 1-2 ASC): The Crusaders begin an eight-game homestand with the three-game weekend series vs. Austin College (Mar. 7-8). . . . Second baseman Jimmy Wright had hits in each of the three games at Mississippi College last weekend, including a 3-for-4 showing in the bottom half of Sunday's doubleheader (Mar. 2). He hit .417 (5-for-12) against the Choctaws. . . . Stephen Oliver threw 5.1 innings in the 6-3 series-opening win at MC (Mar. 2). The senior struck out five and gave up no walks in improving to 2-1 for the year.

McMurry (4-2, 1-2 ASC): McMurry has yet to hit the road, playing its first six games at Driggers Field. The Indians are scheduled to play at home until a March 18 non-conference doubleheader at Texas Wesleyan. . . . First-year shortstop Albert Carrizales leads McMurry hitting (.400), slugging (.700) and on-base percentage (.478). He recorded two singles, a double and a triple in last weekend's three-game series against UT Dallas (Mar. 2-3).

Mississippi College (3-2, 2-1 ASC): Choctaws starter Sam Graham combined with relievers Chad Raley and Russell Young for a 5-0 shutout in game two of Sunday's doubleheader vs. Mary Hardin-Baylor. Mississippi College took two of the three games in the conference-opening series (Mar. 2-3). . . . Third baseman Turk Stovall made his two hits in the UMHB series count, recording a home run and a double along with two RBI. . . . MC is scheduled for a three-game conference series at McMurry this weekend (Mar. 7-8).

Ozarks (4-4, 0-3 ASC): The Eagles dropped all three games in last weekend's ASC series against #21-ranked Texas Lutheran after holding leads in each contest (Mar. 1-2). . . . Catcher Clint Phifer hit .667 with one home run and four RBI in Saturday's TLU doubleheader. He has hit safely in six of seven games started, five times producing multiple-hit games. . . . Outfielder Chris Harrell recorded three RBI vs. TLU in Sunday's 11-inning, 12-7 loss. . . . The Eagles go against their second consecutive nationally-ranked conference opponent when they play #7 Concordia-Austin this weekend (Mar. 7-8).

Schreiner (0-5, 0-0 ASC): The Mountaineers had their ASC-opening series vs. Austin College cancelled due to soggy field conditions in Sherman. . . . Schreiner had a Tuesday (Mar. 4) single-game scheduled against Huston-Tillotson for its first game since a 5-2 loss at Trinity February 17. . . . Travis Turner (.412) and Chase Kimball (.400) lead SU batters.

Sul Ross State (4-10, 2-1 ASC): The Lobos won two-of-three games at LeTourneau last weekend (Mar. 1-2) to open conference play on the positive side and halt a season three-game losing skid. . . . Ryan Lavarall's three-run home run capped a five-run rally as SRSU edged LeTourneau 7-5 in the series-opener. The junior came back in the series-closer to slam a two-run single for the deciding runs in the Lobos' 3-1 win. . . . Sul Ross State hosts Louisiana College in this weekend's cross-division series (Mar. 7-8).

UT Dallas (5-2, 2-1 ASC): Left fielder Fielding Lewis scattered five hits, including a pair of doubles, over the Comets three-game series at McMurry (Mar. 2-3). He finished 5-for-11 with two RBI. . . . Gordan Walters (2-0) struck out six and David Widalski picked-up a save in Sunday's 6-5 win. Jared Franke claimed his first season victory going six innings in Monday's 8-2 win. . . . UTD makes a return trip to Abilene this weekend, going against Hardin-Simmons on Friday and Saturday (Mar. 7-8).

Texas Lutheran (9-0, 3-0 ASC): No. 21-ranked Texas Lutheran is the only undefeated squad in the league. The Bulldogs pushed their season record to 9-0 with a three-game ASC sweep of Ozarks last weekend (Mar. 1-2) that also extended their winning streak to 14 games. . . . Outfielder Dan Halvorson batted .400 against the Eagles, powering a solo home run and a double in the first game of the series. The senior also worked defensive magic, catching a hard line drive and doubling-off the runner at second to get the Bulldogs out of a bases loaded, one out jam in Sunday's series finale. . . . Reliever Jeff Paras shut down Ozarks in the last four innings of game two, allowing one hit and striking out three for the win. Paras came back in game three with 3.1 innings of solid relief work to keep TLU in the game.

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