MARTIN, Tenn. - The University of Tennessee at Martin baseball squad wraps up the 2014 season with a three-game home set against Ohio Valley Conference rival Eastern Illinois at Skyhawk Field on May 15-17. First pitch times for the series are set for 6 p.m. on Thursday, May 15, 4 p.m. on Friday, May 16 and 1 p.m. on Saturday, May 17.
Prior to the start of Saturday’s game, the Skyhawks will recognize the career accomplishments of their seniors. The three UT Martin senior position players have combined for 226 hits, 115 runs scored and 115 RBI’s in seven total seasons while the four Skyhawk senior pitchers have tallied 194 appearances, 16 wins and six saves in 13 total seasons.
Taylor Douglas leads the Skyhawks in 10 offensive categories, including batting average (.337), runs scored (32) and RBI’s (29). A pair of freshmen has also given UT Martin a lift in the month of May, as Chase Young has hit .419 in 31 at-bats this month while Nick Molina carries an eight-game hitting streak into the weekend, hitting safely in every game this month.
The Skyhawks (9-39, 5-22 OVC) are tweaking their weekend starting rotation, as reining OVC Pitcher of the Week Carter Smith (2-3, 4.88 ERA) gets the nod in Game 1 of the series. Junior southpaw Dalton Potts (1-8, 9.00) and junior righty Alex Martin (0-7, 5.40) are slated to start in Game 2 and Game 3, respectively.
Eastern Illinois (18-31-1, 12-14-1) is one of the hottest teams in the league, posting a .750 winning percentage over its last 10 OVC games. The Panthers enter the series just a half-game behind Austin Peay for a spot in next week’s OVC Tournament.
Offensively, Caleb Howell ranks third in the nation in batting average (.422)while Brant Valach (.341, 37 RBI’s) and Demetre Taylor (.323, 26 extra-base hits, 47 RBI’s) provide the power in the Eastern Illinois lineup.
Sophomore right-hander Jake Johansmeier (3-3, 5.58 ERA) is listed as Thursday’s probable starting pitcher for the Panthers. Junior righty and OVC strikeout leader Matt Borens (4-4, 3.64, 85 strikeouts) will follow on Friday while senior right-hander Joe Greenfield (5-5, 5.95) is expected to start on the mound in the series finale.
Live stats for all three games of this series can be found at the top of the webpage.