Jan. 14, 2009

Courtesy of Atlantic 10

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - Coming off consecutive 40-win seasons and conference titles, Charlotte has been picked to win the 2009 Atlantic 10 Baseball Championship in voting conducted by the league's head coaches as the A-10's preseason poll was released today.

The 49ers became the first A-10 program since Virginia Tech in 1999-2000 to win consecutive league titles a year ago and seek to become the first team in Conference annals to win three straight crowns. Led by junior first baseman Rob Lyerly, the Most Outstanding Player of the 2008 A-10 Championship and a second-team preseason All-America selection by Collegiate Baseball, Charlotte has compiled a mark of 92-28 over the past two seasons.

After winning a program-best 19 games in league action and finishing runner-up at the 2008 Championship, Xavier has been picked second, followed by Rhode Island, Richmond and Dayton. The Musketeers are led by senior Jordan Conley, who batted .306 and registered a team-record 10 saves, while URI has advanced to the Atlantic 10 Championship in each of the last six seasons, the longest active streak in the Conference.

Temple has been tabbed for sixth, followed by George Washington, Duquesne, Fordham, St. Bonaventure, Massachusetts, Saint Louis, Saint Joseph's and La Salle.

The six-team A-10 Baseball Championship will be held May 20-23 in Dayton, Ohio, at Fifth Third Field, home of the Cincinnati Reds Single-A affiliate Dayton Dragons.

2009 Predicted Order of Finish (2008 A-10lOverall record in parentheses)
1. Charlotte (19-8/43-16)
2. Xavier (19-8/27-31)
3. Rhode Island (15-11/31-27-1)
4. Richmond (10-16/20-31-2)
5. Dayton (13-14/31-25)
6. Temple (16-11/27-29)
7. George Washington (11-16/26-29)
8. Duquesne (16-10/26-29-1)
9. Fordham (13-14/29-24-1)
10. St. Bonaventure (15-12/29-24)
11. Massachusetts (11-16/18-27)
12. Saint Louis (9-17/24-29)
13. Saint Joseph's (9-18/18-34)
14. La Salle (11-16/16-36)