W&J Set To Host PAC Baseball Tournament
WASHINGTON, Pa. – For the second-straight season, Ross Memorial Park will serve as the host site of the Presidents’ Athletic Conference Baseball Tournament when action begins Thursday with Washington & Jefferson as the top seeded team.
W&J locked up first place in the PAC regular-season standings for the second consecutive season and the seventh time in the last nine years with a three-game sweep of Westminster last weekend. The Presidents posted an 18-6 league mark, one game better than both Thiel and Thomas More.
The second-seeded Tomcats and third-seeded Saints will face off in the tournament’s opening game at 3:00 pm Thursday, while the Presidents take on No. 4 Saint Vincent at 6:00 pm.
The double-elimination tournament continues with three games on Friday (noon, 3:00 pm, 6:00 pm) and concludes Saturday with the championship round (games TBA).
W&J enters the tournament as the league’s hottest team, having won eight-straight games to end the regular season. 11th-year Head Coach Jeff Mountain has guided the Presidents to their fourth 25-win season in the past five seasons. Mountain, the program’s all-time coaching wins leader, needs three victories to reach 300 for his career (297-168-1).
W&J, ranked sixth in the Mideast Region, has competed in nine of the last 10 PAC Tournaments, including each of the last five, but has not claimed the title since 2009. The Presidents were knocked off in the championship game by Westminster last season by a 6-0 margin.
Junior right hander Eddie Nogay (Weirton, W. Va./Madonna) leads the team’s pitching staff with a 9-1 record and a 3.12 earned run average. With one more victory, Nogay would become the first-ever President with 10 wins during a single season. He has struck out 57 batters in 66 1/3 innings and fired three shutouts, tying Sam Mann’s single-season record set in 2005. Nogay owns a 19-1 record with a 2.61 ERA in over 179 career innings.
The Presidents’ offense is led by juniors D.J. Michalski (Canonsburg, Pa./Canon-McMillan) and Josh Staniscia (Export, Pa./Franklin Regional). Michalski boasts a team-best .409 batting average and .518 on-base percentage, while Staniscia owns a .394 batting average and has driven in 29 runs.
Saint Vincent is the tournament’s No. 4 seed for the second-straight season. The Bearcats upset W&J 7-4 during the opening game of the 2012 tournament. Jared Haller and Gary Gerhardt are tied for the team lead with five victories on the mound, while Jordan Britcher paces the Bearcats at the plate with a .361 batting average.
Thiel is making its first appearance in the PAC Tournament since 2009 when it fell to the Presidents in the championship game 7-4. W&J had to defeat the Tomcats twice during that championship Saturday. In the first game, a total of 24 runs were scored (8-Thiel, 16-W&J) during the second inning and the Presidents escaped with an 18-17 victory. The Tomcats are the league’s top hitting team (.340 BA) led by Eric Steininger (67), Eric King (58) and Doug Farley (55), who own the top three hit totals in the conference. Nick Rossmiller is the ace of the Tomcat pitching staff with a 7-3 record and 2.84 ERA. Rossmiller fired a perfect game against Hiram earlier this spring. TC last celebrated a conference title in 2003.
Thomas More has earned a berth in the tournament every season since it joined the PAC in 2006 and is the No. 3 seed for the third consecutive season. Cody Makin leads the league in RBI with 45 and has smacked five home runs, while the Saints’ pitching staffs includes four players with five or more victories. David Etschied is the PAC’s leader with a 1.74 ERA and six saves. The Saints won back-to-back PAC Championships in 2010 and 2011.
Every game of the tournament can be heard live online via the PAC Sports Network (www.pacstream.net). The broadcast team of Randy Gore and Justin Pyles will call each tournament game live with David Singer handling the production. Live Stats are also available for every game.
Thursday, May 9
Game A: (3) Thomas More (27-12, 17-7 PAC) vs. (2) Thiel (24-16, 17-7 PAC) – 3 p.m.
Game B: (4) Saint Vincent (18-18, 14-10 PAC) vs. (1) Washington & Jefferson (27-11, 18-6 PAC) – 6 p.m.
Friday, May 10
Game C: Game A winner vs. Game B winner – Noon
Game D: Game A loser vs. Game B loser – 3 p.m.
Game E: Game C loser vs. Game D winner – 6 p.m.
Saturday, May 11
Game F: Game C winner vs. Game E winner – TBA
Game G: if necessary – TBA
Daily Ticket Prices
$1.00: Championship Program
W&J students admitted free with ID and sign-in at admission entrance