Baseball Hosts First-Place Saint Louis This Weekend

April 10, 2014

Massachusetts (5-19, 3-6 A-10) vs. Saint Louis (19-11, 7-1 A-10)
 Dates | Times Friday, April 11, 2014-Sunday, April 13, 2014 | 3 p.m./1 p.m./12 p.m.
 Location | Forecast

Amherst, Mass.
Friday: AM Rain, 66 degrees, Chance of Rain: 40%
Saturday: Cloudy, 69 degrees, Chance of Rain: 10%
Sunday: Cloudy, 68 degrees, Chance of Rain: 10%

 Live Stats | Video

Friday: GameTracker | A-10 All Access
Saturday: GameTracker | A-10 All Access
Sunday: GameTracker | A-10 All Access

 Social Media @UMassAthletics   | @UMassBaseball 
 Probable Starters UMass: Conor LeBanc (1-3, 3.66 ERA), TBA, TBA
Saint Louis: RHP Nick Bates (4-0, 2.98 ERA), RHP James Norwood (4-0, 2.62 ERA), LHP Josh Moore (2-1, 3.98 ERA)
Game Notes
The Last Meeting
Saint Louis0
April 22, 2012
St. Louis, Mo.
Minutemen Upend Saint Louis 12-0 To Win Series
The UMass baseball team exploded for a season-high 12 runs on 17 hits and rode another dominant pitching performance by senior Joe Popielarczyk to a 12-0 shutout victory over Saint Louis on Sunday afternoon at Billikens Sports Center. With the win, the Minutemen (14-14) take the series and have already equaled their 2011 total in conference victories, now a 8-4 in Atlantic 10 play. SLU drops to 26-13 overall and 8-7 in the A-10.

About The Billikens
- The Billikens were crowned Atlantic 10 champions in 2013 and advanced to the NCAA Columbia Regional before being eliminated at the hands of South Carolina and Clemson and are currently 19-11 overall and 7-1 in Atlantic 10 play.
- SLU last played on Tuesday, Apr. 8, defeating Southern Illinois Edwardsville by a score of 9-4. Junior Alex Solé went 4-for-5 in the win, tallying four RBI in the leadoff spot, while Colton Frabasilio added a three-run homer.
- First baseman Mike Vigliarolo was named Co-Atlantic 10 Player of the Year in 2013. This spring, the junior has started all 30 games for the Billikens, is second on the team in batting average (.326), and leads the squad with four home runs.
- Including Vigliarolo, four members of the SLU roster have a batting average above .300, collectively posting 146 hits and 10 home runs.
- The Bills are expected to give the starting nod on the mound to Nick Bates, James Norwood, and Josh Moore on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, respectively. Norwood is the standout of the three, entering the weekend with a 4-0 record in eight starts and a 2.62 ERA, ranking sixth in the Atlantic 10.

At The Plate

- Freshman Mike Geannelis leads UMass offensively with a .294 average (15-for-51) and has contributed seven RBI and eight runs scored over 16 games.

- Senior Nik Campero paces the Minutemen with 14 RBI, while classmate Dylan Begin follows closely behind with 13 RBI and has two of the team's nine home runs on the year with Campero, sophomore Brandon Walsh, redshirt junior Adam Picard, redshirt junior Kyle Adie, senior Kellen Pagel and Geannelis accounting for the others. Eleven individuals have multiple extra base hits on the year.

On The Hill
- Junior Conor LeBlanc, Friday's starter, has thrown a team-high 46.2 innings on the season over seven and holds a 3.66 earned run average with 12 strikeouts and 12 walks with opponents hitting .273 against him. 

- Freshman Ryan Moloney and senior Aaron Plunkett lead the Minutemen in strikeouts with 21 in 33.2 innings and 21 in 36.0 innings, respectively.

- As a staff, UMass holds a 5.40 ERA over 206.2 innings with 83 walks and 119 strikeouts.
- Senior DJ Jauss has two of the squad's five wins on the year to go along with one save as he is 2-1 in a team-high nine appearances--all coming out of the bullpen.

UMass Advances To Beanpot Championship With 5-3 Win Over Northeastern
- UMass has advanced to the championship game of the Beanpot for a third straight season after defeating Northeastern, 5-3, on April 9 at Earl Lorden Field.
- The Minutemen will face Harvard, who defeated Boston College 6-5 in the other first round game. The Beanpot Championship will be played on Monday, April 21, at Northeastern’s Friedman Diamond at approximately 3:45 p.m.
- Freshman Tommy McDonald earned his first collegiate save on Wednesday, going 2 innings of scoreless ball. It was the first multi-inning save for the Minutemen dating back to May 17 of last year when Jordan Pace tossed 3 scoreless against the Temple Owls.
- Leadoff man Kyle Adie continued his recent hot streak, going 2-for-3 on the day against the Huskies while stealing a base and crossing the plate twice. He has reached base in 16 consecutive games and in 21 of 24 games on the season.
- Over his last Five games, Adie is batting .500 with a slugging percentage of .700.
- Andrew Grant had a strong outing on the mound in his first win of the year, going seven innings and surrendering seven hits (all singles) and three earned runs. Grant also struck out nine on the day.
- Each of the 1-4 hitters for the Minutemen reached base on Wednesday and all four of them reached at least twice. The 5-6-7 trio of sophomore Brandon Walsh, redshirt junior Adam Picard, and sophomore John Jennings followed by each chipping in an RBI on the day.
- Dylan Begin went 2-for-4 to log his eighth multi-hit game of the season. He is currently on a three-game hitting streak and has hit safely in nine of his last 11 games.

On The Upswing
- The UMass bats have been turning things around in their last four games, hitting .288 as a team, well above the team’s season average. Over the past two contests (both wins for the Minutemen), the team has hit a collective .328.
- UMass pitching has fared well in Atlantic 10 contests this season with five of 10 pitchers on the staff have posted an ERA of lower than 3.20. Sophomore Brandon Walsh, Aaron Plunkett and Mike Geannelis stand at 3.18, 2.55 and 2.16 respectively.
- Vinny Scifo swiped three bases in the weekend series against Dayton, including two in Friday’s contest. Scifo has five steals on the year and four in conference play, good for third in the Atlantic 10.
- UMass’ pitchers combined for 10 strikeouts on Wednesday against Northeastern, their highest total since fanning 11 on March 9 against Davidson. The UMass staff has sent down 23 by way of the K in the last three games.
- The Minutemen have not surrendered more than five earned runs in any of the last six games and have given up three, two and two in the last three games respectively.
- The top four hitters of reshirt junior Kyle Adie, senior Nick Sanford, Nik Campero, and senior Dylan Begin have provided a recent spark in the last five games, batting a collective .361 during that stretch, with 33 combined total bases. 

UMass Takes First A-10 Series Of The Season
- The Minutemen opened A-10 play at La Salle and took the series, 2-1, over the Explorers with a 7-6 extra inning victory in game one and an 8-6 win in game two.
- Senior Kellen Pagel hit his first career home run, a three-run shot, to lift the Minutemen over the Explorers in game two.
-  Senior DJ Jauss collected a win and a save over two appearances on the weekend, pitching two innings without allowing a run and letting up just one hit with two walks and two strikeouts. The save was the first of his UMass career.
- Sophomore Brandon Walsh earned his first career win out of the bullpen in game two, allowing only two hits in 3.1 innings pitched.)
- Freshman Dylan Morris went 2-for-5 including a double over the weekend, driving in two runs.

Offensive Outburst
- UMass earned its first win of the season on Mar. 8 with a 15-0 decision over North Carolina A&T. The game included home runs from Brandon Walsh and Kyle Adie, marking the first round trips that both players have made in their collegiate careers.
- The Minutemen exploded for 19 hits and four home runs in their victory, setting the team's highest single-game totals in those categories since Mar. 26, 2011, when the team hit four home runs in a 6-3 win over George Washington.

Bats Back
- The Minutemen return 25 members from the 2013 roster, including seven of its nine regular starters in the field, but will be without the services of All-Atlantic 10 DH Rob McLam who will redshirt the 2014 season.
- The returnees who will see action this season accounted for 50% of the tam's runs scored, 65% of its RBI and 69% of its extra base hits in 2014, including eight of nine home runs.
- Senior Nik Campero is the team's top returning hitter for average after hitting .305 (50-for-164) last season with 20 RBI. Redshirt junior Adam Picard posted a .300 average in 2013 (42-for-150) and led the Minutemen with 31 RBI, while matching senior Dylan Begin for the team lead in home runs (4) last spring.

Returning Arms
- UMass returns 264.9 of its 398.1 innings from last season including five individuals who made at least one start on the mound in 2013.
- Among those back for 2014 is senior DJ Jauss who posted a 4.04 ERA last year with 35 strikeouts in 49.0 innings.
- Right-handed pitcher Andrew Grant started all 12 games that he appeared in as a sophomore in 2013 and led the Minutemen in wins (3) and strikeouts (58).
- The Minutemen welcome five freshman arms to the pitching staff: Mike GeannelisTommy McDonaldJohn MioneRyan Moloney and Ryan Venditti.

Nearing Another Mile-Stone

- Head coach Mike Stone is in his 27th season at the helm for the Minutemen and his 32nd overall as a head coach.

- Stone is just eight wins away from his 700th of his career. Overall he is currently 692-687-5 (.502) overall with a 638-597-3 (.517) mark at UMass.

Next Up
- UMass will travel to Central Connecticut for a mid-week matchup on Tuesday, April 15, at 3 p.m.



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