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Mercer baseball welcomes USC Upstate into town for three-game set

Winners of nine out of its last 10 contests, the Mercer baseball team looks to keep things rolling with a three-game weekend series against USC Upstate starting on April 4 at Claude Smith Field.

MACON, Ga. (MERCER RELEASE) – Winners of nine out of its last 10 contests, the Mercer baseball team looks to keep things rolling with a three-game weekend series against USC Upstate starting on April 4 at Claude Smith Field.

 

Mercer (23-7, 7-2 A-Sun) takes on the Spartans in game one on Friday evening at 6 p.m., with game two slated for Saturday at 2 p.m. and game three set for a 1 p.m. first pitch on Sunday.

 

Live stats are available for all games and a free A-Sun TV video feed will be available to all fans for the Friday and Sunday games.

 

PITCHING MATCHUPS

Friday

Mercer: RHP Brandon Barker (2-1, 4.15 ERA, 21 K’s)

USC Upstate: RHP Eric Birklund (0-4, 7.77 ERA, 15 K’s)

 

Saturday

Mercer: LHP Grant Papelian (3-1, 4.31 ERA, 14 K’s)

USC Upstate: LHP David Roseboom (2-4, 3.70 ERA, 31 K’s)

 

Sunday

Mercer: RHP Eric Nyquist (3-0, 4.93 ERA, 19 K’s)

USC Upstate: RHP Zac Manuppelli (3-3, 6.39 ERA, 13 K’s


SCOUTING THE OPPONENT

USC Upstate enters play this weekend with a 10-21 overall record and losers in 10 out of its last 11 contests after most recently dropping an 8-4 decision against Gardner-Webb on April 2. The Spartans are currently tied for last place in the Atlantic Sun Conference with a 2-7 league mark and sport a similar 2-7 record in road games this season. USC Upstate ranks second to last in the A-Sun in both runs scored per game (4.13) and team ERA (6.73). Junior Erik Samples paces the Spartans offense with a .308 batting average, 22 RBI and an A-Sun leading 13 doubles this season.

LAST TIME OUT

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (MERCER RELEASE) – The Mercer baseball team sent 15 men to the plate in a jailbreak top of the seventh inning to pull away from Alabama State for a 12-4 road win on Tuesday evening at the Wheeler-Watkins Baseball Complex. The nine-run inning for Mercer (23-7) was its highest single-inning run total since plating 10 runs in the bottom of the sixth in an 18-3 home win over Florida A&M in February of 2013. Junior Chesny Young paced the Bears offense that featured six players who recorded multi-hit games by going 3-for-5 with a run scored and four RBI in the win. After both teams’ bullpens settled in, the Bears broke out in a big way with their nine-run top of the seventh inning that concluded with Mercer holding a 12-4 lead. Among the highlights in the frame included a pair of RBI singles by Young, a two-RBI senior Sasha LaGarde and an RBI double from senior Derrick Workman.

 

FAST FACTS

-  Mercer holds a commanding 17-4 all-time series lead over USC Upstate. The Bears have won all six season series with the Spartans since USC Upstate joined the A-Sun during the 2007-08 season. Junior Chesny Young has feasted on USC Upstate pitching over the years, compiling a .472 batting average with 12 runs scored and 13 RBI in nine games played.

- Mercer is 3-0 this season in doubleheaders, sweeping all day affairs from High Point, Kennesaw State and North Florida. Speaking of seeing double, the Bears are 23-7 over their first 30 games this season which is the same exact record Mercer had over its first 30 games to start last season.

- Since the start of the 2012 season, Mercer has compiled a 58-15 record at the friendly confines of Claude Smith Field entering play this weekend. The Bears have out-scored their opponents by a 566-280 margin and have clubbed 91 home runs during that time span compared to only 35 for their opposition. Mercer is 15-2 at home in 2014 and haven’t lost a three-game weekend series at home since dropping two-of-three to Stetson in March of 2012.

 

 

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