Baseball Heads to the Tournament
The Gadsdentimes.com has an excellent overview of JSU Baseball as they head in to the OVC tournament as the #2 seed. Here is an excerpt, but check out the full article by going to Gadsdentimes.com:
Jacksonville State is riding high after a three-game sweep last weekend as it prepares to begin play Thursday in the Ohio Valley Conference Baseball Championship in Jackson, Tenn.
Steve Latham | Jacksonville State | File
The Gamecocks traveled to Morehead, Ky., last weekend, where they picked up three wins against Morehead State. The sweep improved Jacksonville State to 29-24 overall and gave the Gamecocks a final 15-8 record in OVC play.
The 15-8 mark was good enough to net the Gamecocks the No. 2 seed in the conference tournament, which begins today with a pair of games. Jacksonville State and Tennessee Tech, the tournament’s No. 1 seed, each received first-round byes and will begin play Thursday.
Jacksonville State’s opponent Thursday will be the highest remaining seed from the winners of today’s games, while Tennessee Tech will face the lowest seed of today’s winners. No. 4 Southeast Missouri and No. 5 Eastern Illinios will battle in the opening game and will be followed by No. 3 Murray State and No. 6 Eastern Kentucky.
The Gamecocks know they will not face Eastern Kentucky, leaving the other three teams as possible opponents. Jacksonville State will be looking for its third conference championship since joining the OVC. The Gamcocks won the tournament title in 2004 and 2006.
Jacksonville State boasts a .313 team batting average entering the tournament. Coach Jim Case’s squad is led at the plate by Bert Smith, who has a .362 average and is the OVC’s career hits leader.
Todd Cunningham is second on the team with a .353 average and has 10 home runs on the season, one of five Gamecocks with at least 10 dingers. Sam Eberle leads the squad with 16 homers, while Daniel Adamson has 13 and Kyle Bluestein 12.
Former Gadsden High standout Andrew Edge also has 10 homers to go with a .327 average. His 59 RBI are tops on the club.
Adamson is the reigning OVC player of the week after slugging four home runs and driving in 13 runs in four games, including the sweep of Morehead State and a 9-7 loss to Auburn.
On the mound, relief pitcher Alex Jones is the squad’s ERA leader with a 3.72 mark in 46 innings of work. Austin Lucas has a 4.83 ERA, which is best among Gamecock starters, and a 5-0 record. The five wins tie him with Tanner Freshour for the team lead in that category.
Jacksonville State’s opener Thursday will be a 3 p.m. first pitch. All games will be played at Pringles Park, the home of the West Tenn Diamond Jaxx, the Class AA minor league affiliate of the Seattle Mariners.