Drives -- ASC's Weekly Baseball Notebook
February 18, 2004
AROUND THE CONFERENCE
Weather played havoc with the schedules of American Southwest Conference baseball teams with snow, rain, cold temperatures and soggy fields contributing to delayed season openings and unplanned open dates. The weather forecast for the February 16 week looks promising for a full week of play throughout the ASC.
Defending ASC champion Mississippi College opens the season ranked No. 18 in the preseason ABCA/Collegiate Baseball News poll. Both Concordia-Austin and Texas Lutheran are among teams receiving votes.
The ASC baseball roster added a team in the off-season with first-year league member UT Tyler. The Patriots are in their first year of NCAA Division III provisional membership and will not be eligible to compete in the ASC postseason championship tournament. The team is eligible to compete for the ASC East title. . . . Louisiana College is eligible for the ASC Championship Tournament for the first time in 2004, thanks to its status as a full NCAA Division III member.
Freshman RHP B.C. Lee captured his first collegiate victory in his McMurry debut, helping the Indians salvage a doubleheader split with NAIA-scholarship Lubbock Christian. Lee scattered six hits, walked two, struck out three and allowed three runs over six innings of work. Sophomore RHP Nick Schafer McMurrys No. 2 starter collected his first career save by preserving Lees win, pitching a scoreless inning in Game 2. . . . McMurry (1-1) snapped a six-game winning streak dating back to last season with the 8-6 loss in the first game of Sundays (Feb. 15) doubleheader with LCU. . . . ASC West Preseason Player of the Year Josh Lee hit two homers in as many games and had three RBI during the LCU twinbill.
LeTourneau got in four games before weather issues last weekend forced a break. The YellowJackets dropped a doubleheader to Henderson State (Feb. 3) before splitting with the University of Dallas (Feb. 7). LU won the nightcap 6-3. . . . Junior OF Derek Fitchett was named NCCAA Player of the Week for his play over the first week of the season. Fitchett drove-in five runs over the four-game stretch.
Junior LF Brice Gilmore homered in his first at-bat of the season in the 8-3 Texas Lutheran win over Huston-Tillotson (Feb. 3). Gilmores blast penetrated a 15-20-mph south wind and went over the right field fence traveling an estimated 350-feet. In game two, he had a single and a sacrifice fly to drove in the games only run, giving TLU a 1-0 win. . . . The Bulldogs (2-0) hit the road for a nine-inning game Thursday with Southwestern (Texas). It will be the first action since February 3. . . . TLU head coach Bill Miller has 394 career victories after the doubleheader sweep of Huston-Tillotson. Miller is second on the TLU baseball win list and trails his former coach, NAIA Hall of Famer Ray Katt, who retired with 502 wins.
Louisiana College 1B Ryan Reeves made the most of his on-base chances. Reeves scored one run in each of the two LC wins against Southwest Assemblies of God University (Feb. 6-7), one putting the Wildcats ahead and the other one tying the score. Reeves heads into Thursday's (Feb. 19) home doubleheader vs. Hillsdale Freewill Baptist batting .416 (5-for-12) with a pair of walks and an RBI. . . . Three freshman pitchersGrant Wilson, Robbie Woodel and Allen Waddellcombined for a one-hitter in LC's 8-0 shutout of SAGU (Feb. 7).
Mary Hardin-Baylor has not played a game this season after having its season opener rained out last week. The Crusaders look to get 2004 underway on Tuesday (Feb. 17) at St. Edwards. . . . UMHB has 15 freshmen and three transfers on the roster this season, for a total of 18 newcomers on the numerical roster.
East Texas Baptist got a masterpiece performance from RHP Kolt Daniel in the weather-shortened 4-1 win over Bethany College (Feb. 13). The freshman opened his Tiger career striking-out eight and giving up three hits and one walk over five innings. . . . The Tigers' 3-0 start to the 2004 season mirrors a 3-0 start last season when ETBU went on a 5-0 run to open the season.
Concordia-Austin has played all of its eight season games against NCAA Division II and NAIA scholarship programs. The Tornados are 3-1 vs. NCAA-II, including a doubleheader sweep of St. Edward's last Sunday (Feb. 12), and 2-2 vs. NAIA.
Sul Ross State roared to an 11-8 win in the second game of its February 6 doubleheader against the College of the Southwest to earn a split for the day and its lone win of the early season. . . . . Pitchers Lance Son and Chris Espinoza have combined for 18 strikeouts over 18.0 innings. Son leads the SRSU staff with 11 Ks. . . . Kevin Heady has driven-in a team-high five runs and totals nine hits.
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