Friday night is Military Appreciation night at Sessions Stadium. All active and retired military can get in free with ID. The Dolphins will be dressed in their commemorative camouflage uniforms.
Riding a two-game win streak and 19 consecutive scoreless innings, Jacksonville returns to Sessions Stadium this weekend against #17 Indiana, a 2013 College World Series Participant. The Dolphins and Hoosiers will get things started on Friday at 6:30 pm, followed by Saturday at 2:00 pm and Sunday at 12:00 pm.
Jacksonville (3-7) took two of three vs Winthrop last weekend on the strength of its starting pitching, the starting trio of Josh Baker, Alex McRae and Justin Russell combined for 22 shutout innings as the Dolphins staff blanked Winthrop in 26 of the 27 innings. The back-to-back shutouts last Saturday and Sunday for Jacksonville was a first for the program since the 2001 season. No small feat considering the club advanced to six NCAA during the stretch.
A sophomore left-hander, Baker (0-0; 0.00 ERA, 14 IP) will look to extend the streak as he gets the start again this Friday opposite LHP Joey DeNato (3-0; 0.47 ERA, 19 IP) for the Hoosiers. In his first start of the year last week, Baker allowed just three hits in seven scoreless innings. In four appearances this season he has yet to allow a run in 14 innings of work. DeNato has been the ace for Indiana this season posting wins over Texas Tech, Washington and last week at #9 Louisville.
McRae (1-2; 4.26 ERA) was tagged the A-Sun Pitcher of the Week this week for his complete game five-hit shutout last Saturday in which he posted a career best 11 strikeouts. He currently ranks third in the A-Sun with 18 Ks this season. Indiana will counter with LHP Will Coursen-Carr (1-2; 3.94 ERA) who is coming off a win over Toledo in which he allowed three unearned runs on four hits in five innings.
Russell (2-1; 4.50 ERA) will anchor the staff again to close out the series. He is 2-0 on Sunday’s this season with a 0.00 ERA in 13 innings. RHP Christian Morris (0-1; 2.08 ERA, 8.2 IP) will make his second start of the year for Indiana.
Offensively the Dolphins broke out for a season high 15 hits and eight runs on Sunday. Senior catcher Braddock Rowe hit .500 (5-for-10) in the series as did senior third baseman Scott Schaub (4-for-8) who also added three RBI. Sophomore outfielder Michael Babb was a factor as well scoring four runs and stealing three bases while hitting .444 (4-for-9) in the series.
For Indiana catcher Kyle Schwarber was rated as the #17 top prospect in the nation by Baseball America back in October. He leads the team in average, extra base hits, runs scored and onbase percentage. The Hoosiers roster also features Jacksonville, Fla. product Thomas Belcher (The Bolles School). A RHP Belcher has not appeared yet this season.
All three games of the series will be broadcast on 92.5 FM. Download the 92.5 app on your smartphone and listen to the game anywhere in the nation. Scott Manze will be in the catbird seat on Friday and Sunday with Richard Miller taking over on Sunday.
Sunday’s game can also be seen online on ASun.TV.
This is the first ever meeting between the two schools.
Next Up For Jacksonville
The Dolphins hit the road for a mid-week game at College of Charleston on Tuesday before starting A-Sun play at Lipscomb over the weekend.
Dolphins Double Up
Jacksonville leads the league and rank 19th in the nation having turned 12 double plays this season. The Dolphins are also tops in the A-Sun with a .974 fielding percentage
Maxon Sets Dolphins Appearances Record
Senior Adam Maxon made his 90th career appearance in the game against Winthrop on Feb. 28 becoming the Jacksonville recorded holder in the process, He surpassed former Dolphin Joel Hegeman (1996-99).