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Courtesy: WMU

Bronco Baseball Travels to Minnesota For Four-Game Series Against Gophers

Courtesy: Ryan Champine, media relations staff assistant
Release: 02/21/2013
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KALAMAZOO, Mich.- The Western Michigan University baseball team will travel to Minnesota for a four-game series against the Golden Gophers this weekend, Feb. 22-24. The first game will be Friday at 7:35 p.m. followed by a doubleheader Saturday at 3:05 p.m. and 6:05 p.m., a nine-inning contest and seven-inning contest. The series wraps up Sunday with a 2 p.m. first pitch. The series will be played indoors at the Metrodome.

PROJECTED STARTERS

Game 1 (Fri): LHP Steve Laudicina (0-1, 9.00) vs. LHP Tom Windle (0-0, 0.00)
Game 2 (Sat G1): LHP Mike Moyer (0-1, 6.23) vs. LHP Ben Meyer (0-1, 15.00)
Game 3 (Sat G2): RHP Patrick Borlik (0-1, 0.00) vs. LHP Kyle O'Shea (0-0, 13.50)
Game 4 (Sun): RHP Will Nimke (0-0, 15.43) vs. LHP Jordan Jess (0-1, 20.25)

PAST HISTORY
The Gophers lead the all-time series 5-3. The last meeting between the two teams was in 2009.

SCOUTING THE BRONCOS
• Western Michigan is 0-4 on the season, dropping four games on the road at Pepperdine.
• Freshman Hunter Prince leads the Broncos in hitting with a .364 batting average (4-for-11).
• Sophomore Andrew Sohn is hitting .308 with four RBIs.
• WMU posted a 26-29 record last year, going 14-12 in the Mid-American Conference. WMU finished third in the MAC West and was the No. 5 seed overall in the conference tournament.
• Last year, Western Michigan notched Big Ten wins over Northwestern, Ohio State and Michigan.

SCOUTING THE GOPHERS
• Minnesota opened up its season against UCLA with a 6-2 victory in extra innings before dropping the next two games. (UCLA entered the series ranked second in the USA Today/Coaches poll).
• The Gophers have 22 returning players, six of which are starting position players.
• Team is led by outfielder Andy Henkemeyer, first baseman Dan Olinger, and starting pitcher Tom Windle.
• Henkemeyer earned third-team All-Big Ten honors last season and is hitting .417 (5-for-12) on the young season.
• Olinger is also hitting .417 (5-for-12) on the season.
• Windle pitched four scoreless innings in his no decision against UCLA.
• As a team, the Gophers are hitting .220 and were outscored in the opening series 30-7.

WHAT LIES AHEAD
The Broncos next then head South for the annual Spring trip to Florida, playing five games at the Snow Bird Classic in Port Charlotte, an exhibition game against the Detroit Tigers prospect team in Lakeland, and traveling to Fort Myers for a three-game series against Florida Gulf Coast.

WELL TRAVELED
The Broncos are scheduled for a total of 54 regular-season games, the first 24 (including exhibition vs. Detroit prospects) of those to be played on the road or at neutral sites. Western Michigan's first home game is not until March 29, hosting conference opponent Buffalo that weekend in a three-game MAC series.

CAPTAIN, OH MY CAPTAIN
For the first time under third-year head coach Billy Gernon, Western Michigan has named captains for the season - senior infielder Patrick Duncan, junior outfielder Vinnie Booker and sophomore outfielder Jared Kujawa.

PRESEASON ACCOLADES
Senior INF Patrick Duncan and junior LHP Steve Laudicina were named Preseason Second Team All-MAC by College Sports Madness. Laudicina was also voted as one of the top three starting arms in the MAC in a coaches poll by CollegeBaseballInsider.com.

OUTSIDE THE LINES
Western Michigan has been getting the job done off the field as well. WMU had a team GPA of 3.25 this past fall, the highest for the baseball program on school record.

 

 

 

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