Bulldogs Begin Five-Game Road Trip Tuesday
March 23, 2009
RUSTON -- After Louisiana Tech completed a four-game homestand on Sunday, they will play their next five games on the road as they will visit Grambling State on Tuesday, UT Arlington on Wednesday and Dallas Baptist Thursday through Saturday.
"The upcoming five games will be a tremendous challenge for our team as we will end up playing eight games in nine days," Tech head coach Wade Simoneaux said. "Not only will our hitters be challenged, but the stretch will also challenge our pitchers. We need to continue to give our relievers a chance on the mound in hope they will turn the corner soon. We also need to find out who will be able to produce for us once conference season begins."
Tech went 3-1 last week with one win coming against UALR and two resulting from a three-game series against Houston Baptist. Kevin Winn led the Bulldogs during the week with a .471 batting average, two home runs, 12 RBI and four walks. He also recorded 15 assists from the second base position and had a perfect fielding percentage.
The Bulldogs will travel to Grambling State for a single game on Tuesday beginning at 6 p.m. Tech swept their three-game series against the Tigers in the beginning of the season. Since both teams took the diamond, the Bulldogs have added nine wins to their win total and have lost six. On the other hand, Grambling State comes into the game with a record of 5-16. Over this past weekend, they won one game and lost two to Arkansas-Pine Bluff.
Jamelle Clements will make his first career start for the Bulldogs against the Tigers. In 5.2 innings of relief, the redshirt freshman is 0-0 on the season with a 6.35 ERA. During his outings against McNeese State on Feb. 28 and Houston Baptist on March 20, the left-hander pitched a total of four innings and allowed only one hit and one walk, while striking out a batter.
LA Tech and UT Arlington will play their 88th game against each other on Wednesday with the first pitch scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Currently, the Bulldogs are 41-46 against the Mavericks, but within the past three years, Tech holds the overall record at 5-3.
UTA is 12-10 on the season and have played Texas, TCU and Minnesota. They dropped their single games against the two Texas schools, but swept their two-game series against Minnesota.
Outfielder/reliever Matt Otteman ranks first among the Mavericks with a .457 batting average, 42 hits, three triples, three home runs and 27 RBI. Sophomore right-hander Rett Varner possesses the lowest ERA among UTA's starters at 2.33. In 27 innings pitched, he has allowed 11 runs (seven earned) and 10 walks, while recording 11 strikeouts.
Once Tech wraps up their second game of the week, they will make the short drive to take on Dallas Baptist, a 2008 NCAA Regional participant, in a three-game series starting on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. Friday's game is also set for 6:30 p.m., while the final game of the series is scheduled for 1 p.m. on Saturday.
The Bulldogs and Patriots last played each other in 2007 and Tech took the three-game series by scores of 7-2, 11-8 and 3-2. Tech leads the all-time series 10-3.
Like the Bulldogs, the Patriots are 12-6 on the season. They swept ULM in a two-game series last week, but then they were swept in a three-game series by Minnesota over the weekend.
Junior outfielder Ryan Enos leads the team with a .481 batting average, 25 runs, 37 hits, eight doubles, nine home runs, 28 RBI and eight stolen bases. Among the starting pitchers, right-hander Victor Black leads the group with a 3-0 record and a 3.49 ERA in 28 innings pitched. He also leads the pitchers with 29 strikeouts.
Dallas Baptist will video stream the three-game series against Tech at http://www.dbu.edu/athletics/baseball/webcast/.
Fans can listen to the Bulldogs during their games on Wednesday through Saturday by tuning into ESPN 97.7 FM. An audio feed will also be available online at www.espn977.com. Dave Nitz will start the pregame show approximately 10 minutes prior to the first pitch.
Fans can also follow the action Wednesday through Saturday by accessing the GameTracker function found at the online home of Louisiana Tech athletics, www.latechsports.com.