W&J Baseball Heads To Florida Ranked 22nd By D3baseball.com
WASHINGTON, Pa. – The Washington & Jefferson College baseball team moved up three spots to No. 22 in the latest D3baseball.com poll released on Monday.
The Presidents are 3-0 for the first time since 2007 when they were victorious in their first five games to open the season after sweeping this past weekend’s three-game series from Bethany. W&J hurlers allowed just one run and nine hits in 23 innings, while the Presidents’ offense averaged nearly 10 runs per game during the set.
W&J departs for its annual week long Spring Break trip to Florida Saturday, facing a challenging seven-game slate at the RussMatt Central Florida Invitational. Last season, the Presidents went undefeated (7-0) in the Sunshine State for the first time in program history.
Games begin on Sunday, March 17 with a doubleheader against SUNY-Plattsburgh. The teams have met once previously when the Presidents downed the Cardinals 13-4 in Fort Myers, Fla., during the 2003 season. Plattsburgh is 0-2 this season, having dropped a pair of games at Farmingdale State on Sunday.
W&J faces a second team from the state of New York on Monday when it takes on SUNY-Brockport. The Golden Eagles are 4-0 and receiving votes in the latest D3baseball.com poll. Brockport has already knocked off one ranked team, having beaten Kean (N.J.) 7-5 in its season opener.
After a day off, the highlight of the trip comes on Wednesday when W&J matches up with NCAA Division I Bradley (Ill.). The Presidents last faced a Division I opponent in 2008 when they tied Duquesne 7-7 and have not beaten a foe from the NCAA’s top level since 1992 (5-4 at Duquesne). The Braves own a 5-9 record this spring after winning 27 games last season.
Rowan is the Presidents’ Thursday opponent. Like W&J, the Profs earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament last season under Head Coach Juan Ranero, who owns 417 coaching victories during his career. Rowan won its first five games before dropping a 13-7 decision to Haverford on March 5. The Profs received 16 votes in Monday’s D3baseball.com poll.
The Presidents’ trip concludes with a doubleheader against Gallaudet (Md.), which is coached by former Major League Baseball player Curtis Pride. The Bison are off to a 4-8 start this season after winning 25 games and advancing to the North Eastern Athletic Conference Championship game in 2012. Gallaudet is the world leader in liberal education and career development for deaf and hard of hearing students.
Live stats of all seven Florida games will be available on the W&J athletics web site.