April 25, 2013
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - The Southern Miss baseball team welcomes Conference USA foe UAB to Pete Taylor Park/Hill Denson Field this weekend in the Golden Eagles' final league home series of 2013.
The Golden Eagles (21-19, 10-5) play the Blazers (17-25, 3-9) in a 6 p.m., game on Friday, a 6:30 p.m., contest Saturday and a 1 p.m., tilt on Sunday. The Saturday contest will be televised on Fox Sports Net (including SportSouth, Comcast Channel 97 SD/1676 HD in Hattiesburg).
It will be Military Appreciation weekend at The Pete with active, retired and reserve military members able to purchase $5 tickets for the entire weekend Military personnel must present a valid military ID in order to take advantage of this special. These tickets can be purchased at the Pat Ferlise Ticket Office or at the Pete Taylor Box Office.
On Saturday, Colonel Brad Smith, commanding officer of Camp Shelby, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch. The colors will be presented by the USM Air Force ROTC color guard, with flags from all branches of the armed forces presented by the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), and the athletics department invites all those that serve or have served in our military to join us on the field for a special presentation. Those that join us on the field are asked to meet the athletic department personnel by the first baseline gate at 6 pm.
In addition on Saturday, the team will wear the special camouflage hats on Saturday as part of the festivities.
Southern Miss enters the weekend with a one-game lead in the league standings over Rice, while the Blazers sit in last place in the nine-team league.
The Golden Eagles and Blazers have met 86 times on the diamond since the start of the series back in 1980. The Golden Eagles have posted a 55-31 overall mark against UAB and have won the last two series over the Blazers, including a sweep here back in 2011.
Southern Miss will utilize the same weekend rotation that they have used for the last four weeks with sophomore lefthander Jake Drehoff (1-4, 3.66 ERA) going on Friday night, while senior right-handed pitcher Andrew Pierce (8-1, 1.73 ERA) is slated to go Saturday and junior righty Conor Fisk (3-1, 2.21 ERA) slated to go in the finale.
The Blazers are expected to counter with righthander Tanner Bryant (2-5, 4.99 ERA) on Friday and southpaw Sam Kelley (3-4, 2.76 ERA). UAB is undecided on a starter for the Sunday contest.
Senior second baseman Isaac Rodriguez has been one of the hotter Golden Eagle hitters of late, currently posting a .324 batting average with a home run and 17 RBI to go along with a team-best 20 walks and has hit safely in each of his last six games.
Sophomore catcher Austin Roussel leads the club with a .370 batting average, despite missing time with a hand injury earlier this season, while senior catcher Chase Fowler has posted a .333 batting average and sophomore outfielder Mason Robbins is collecting a .305 batting mark.
Following the UAB series, the Golden Eagles finish up the April portion of their schedule with a Tuesday night contest against ULM. Game time is set for 6 p.m., at Pete Taylor Park/Hill Denson Field.
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