Division II

No. 3 Emporia State at No. 4 Central Missouri

Emporia State and Central Missouri will meet in a showdown of nationally ranked opponents this weekend in Missori. The Hornets (33-4, 29-3) are ranked third in the nation and will face the fourth-ranked Mules (30-6, 25-5) in a pair of weekend MIAA doubleheaders.

The Hornets have been tough offensively, tallying 38 home runs and a total of 138 extra-base hits. Joe Vaskas, hitting .321 on the year, leads Emporia State with 10 home runs. The Hornets have also been quick on the base paths, having stolen 89 bases. Dillon Hazlett has capitalized on all 35 of his steal attempts.

The Mules are hitting .319 as a team and have been fueled by the play of Nick DiBasse, who is batting .472 with eight homers and 42 RBI. Central also leads the league in team ERA (4.18) and is led by Don Lisi, who is 7-1 with a 3.44 ERA and 48 strikeouts.

Central Missouri has dominated the series against Emporia State, winning 110 times and losing only 53 games to the Hornets.

  • Schedule: The teams will play a pair of doubleheaders on April 22 and 23. Start time on both days is 1 p.m.

CIAA Tournament

Chowan (29-14) won the regular-season championship in the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association and begins its quest for a tournament title today against Virginia State at Colbert Baseball Field in Petersburg, Va.

The top-seeded Hawks have the most wins since the 2008 campaign and have an offense that features six batters hitting .300 or better. Junior Justin Bagbey leads the way with his .359 average. He has also knocked in 36 runs.

CU
Garrett

The Hawks are hitting .301 as a team and will count on juniors Brett Garrett and John DesChamps to pave the way on the mound. Garrett is 8-3 with a 2.27 ERA and DesChamps is 5-4 with a 2.87 ERA. The duo has combined for 133 strikeouts and 38 walks.

St. Augustine’s is seeded second and could match up with Chowan in the semifinal round if both teams win their first games of the double-elimination tournament. The Falcons (34-16) will match up against Winston Salem State in the opening round and enter the postseason as the defending tournament champions.

The hopes of the Hawks will hinge heavily on CIAA Player of the Year Rashad Ingram. The star senior shortstop is batting .394 and has scored 66 runs to go along with 30 RBI.

  • Schedule: Championship Game: April 23, 1 p.m.

SAC Tournament
Catawba will be gunning for a third straight South Atlantic Conference championship this weekend at McNair Field in Forest City, NC.

But the nationally ranked Indians (38-9) will have to shake off a 4-2 loss to Newberry in the opening round. Catawba managed only four hits in the loss and will face an elimination game against Carson-Newman today. If the Indians are to keep their title hopes alive, Chris Dula will need to step up at the plate. The talented freeshman is hitting .383 on the season and has knocked in 54 runs. Dula has eight home runs as well, the second-best total on the team.

Wingate (31-20) is seeded second in the tournament and started strong with a 4-1 win over Carson-Newman. Junior Dodson McPherson has played a key role in the success of Wingate this season, hitting .413 on the year. He has smashed 16 home runs and has tallied 73 RBI.

  • Schedule: Championship Game: April 23, 1 p.m.

Division III

SCAC Tournament

Momentum is not something Trinity (Texas) has at the moment as it prepares for the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference tournament.

The Tigers, winners of the conference crown twice in the last three years, tumble into the conference tourney today against Oglethorpe at USA Stadium in Millington, Tenn., caught in the grip of a three-game losing streak.

No one is blaming head coach Tim Scannell for being a little on edge entering tournament play.

“There is definite concern, and we have basically underachieved this year,” Scannell said. “Baseball is not a game that you can just flip a switch and expect to play well. This team has talent, but as far as coming out and understanding what the game of college baseball ass you to do, we have a long way to go.”

Trinity (29-11), gunning for its 16th conference title in the last 20 seasons, is the top seed out of the West Division. Oglethorpe (17-8) is seeded third out of the East.

TU
Felix

The Tigers will be counting on star catcher/infielder Kyle Felix to rise to the occasion. The senior holds school records for home runs, RBI and doubles. Felix is hitting .368 and has been a force with extra-base hits, tallying 21 doubles and 12 home runs.

Felix is one of six players with at least 100 at-bats hitting at least .300, with senior Kevin Calbick leading the team at .393.

“Kyle is a very talented kid, but just as important, he is a tireless worker,” Scannell said. “If Kyle stays within himself, we should have a fighting chance to battle in any game we play from here on out. As for the others on this team stepping up, the same thing applies. They have to do the best job to the best of their abilities.”

The Stormy Petrels have lost four of their last five games and have been guided by seniors Brendan Pilger and Matt Cornwell. Pilger has crushed nine home runs and is hitting .358. He has also knocked in 43 runs. Cornwell is batting .350 and has driven in 24 runs.

  • Schedule: Championship Game: April 23, noon. Second game, if necessary, scheduled for 3:30 p.m.

NEWMAC Tournament
Wheaton (Mass.) avoided disappointment in the opening round of the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference tournament and stayed on course for the championship with a 7-3 come-from-behind win over the United States Coast Guard Academy.

The No. 21 Lyons (24-7) fell behind 3-1 but used a 16-hit attack and solid pitching by Nolan Corr (three runs, six hits, three strikeouts) to earn the victory. Wheaton, winners of 20 of its 23 games, advances to play third-seeded Massachusetts Institute of Technology at 3:30 p.m. Friday.

MIT stunned second-seeded Babson, 6-5, in its opening round game. The Engineers (19-9) scored five runs in the top of the ninth for the thrilling victory.

Dan Haugh will look to keep the Lyons on pace for their 11th conference tourney crown. The junior infielder is hitting .441 and has knocked in 50 runs. Wheaton is batting .343 as a team and has a team ERA of 3.44. The staff has given up just 46 extra-base hits on the year.

MIT will be counting on Dan Hyatt to pave the way. He has a team-best 33 hits and is batting .378 this season. The Engineers have a team ERA of 2.43 and have allowed just 45 extra-base hits this year.

  • Schedule: Championship Game: April 25, 3:30 p.m.

ODAC Tournament
Bridgewater and Lynchburg are the top two seeds in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference tournament and both squads won as expected in the opening day of the tourney at City Stadium in Lynchburg.

Bridgewater knocked off Hampton-Syndey 8-3 and Lynchburg edged Guilford 6-5 in its first-round game.

BC
Mason

Sophomore outfielder Jonathan Mason has been key for the Eagles (24-16) all season, hitting .312 with 41 RBI. Mason had two hits in the win over Hampden-Sydney and will need to keep up the pace for the Eagles to contend for the championship.

Senior Jordan Watkins hit a game-winning single for the Hornets (23-13) and is hitting .326 on the season. Classmate Mike Walters leads the team with his .317 batting average and has a team-high 45 hits. The Lynchburg pitching staff has three players with five or more wins, including league rookie of the year James Womack, who has struck out 32 and boasts a 2.13 ERA. Womack has six wins.

  • Schedule: Championship Game: April 23, 1 p.m.

Rutgers-Newark at No. 3 Kean

Kean and Rutgers-Newark will be vying for the upper hand in the New Jersey Athletic Conference this weekend as the two teams square off Saturday in a doubleheader at Jim Hynes Stadium.

Kean (26-4, 9-1 NJAC) will play host to the Scarlet Raiders (18-10, 10-2) starting at 11:30 a.m. Saturday. The Cougars are led by Ken Gregory and Lee Cavico. Gregory is batting .389 and has driven in 32 runs while Cavico owns a .389 batting average and has tallied 24 RBI. The duo has combined for nine home runs.

The Scarlet Raiders have won their last four games and hope to bring that luck on the road with them. Matt Connors recently became the career leader in stolen bases with 60. Connors is hitting .238 in 25 games played and has 15 stolen bases on the season.

Chris Ballester leads the team in batting with a .378 average. He has 34 RBI. Patrick Reitmeyer is second on the team (.347) and has knocked in 20 runs this year. The Scarlet Raiders are hitting .279 as a team.

  • Schedule: Doubleheader on April 23 beginning at 11:30 a.m.