Thoughts and pictures of my local minor league baseball team the New York Penn League Connecticut Tigers; a Detriot farm team. We'll still be looking at former Navigators/Defenders players along the way....

Thursday, May 05, 2011

From Joe in today's Bulletin.....

College Baseball: UConn has chance to host another NCAA regional.

Posted May 04, 2011 @ 11:44 PM

The leaders of the pack in the Big East are coming back to Dodd Stadium with the potential for more games there.

UConn, which is in the stretch run toward a regular season conference title, hosts South Florida at 6:30 p.m., Saturday and Louisville at 6 p.m., May 13.

Should the Huskies go on to win the conference tournament with a spot in the top 25, they could host their second NCAA Regional in two years. Last year’s was at Dodd.

“It’s a great opportunity,” UConn coach Jim Penders said of playing at Dodd Stadium. “The guys down there have been really good to us. … It’s a great facility and we always look forward to going to Norwich.”

Ranked 23rd in the nation, the Huskies haven’t had the kind of success they would have liked to at Dodd. In a game earlier this season, UConn fell, 5-4, to Sacred Heart. The game had been relocated from Bridgeport with a day’s notice.

Before that March game, the Huskies defeated Central Connecticut State, but lost twice to Oregon at their NCAA regional last year.

“From a selfish standpoint, I realize what the University of Connecticut and its sports are to this state and its residents,” Connecticut Tigers General Manager Andrew Weber said. “Just to be able to be part of that, I know that’s going to help the Tigers in the long run, but it obviously creates a great relationship with Coach Penders and the athletic department as well.”

Last year’s regional was equal parts success and failure. It’s the failure that Dodd Stadium’s tenants, the Tigers, said they learned from.

The team’s front office is already preparing for the possibility of hosting the event again, one which saw roughly 15,000 college baseball fans attend three days of games.

The biggest hiccup was traffic getting into the stadium. The Tigers didn’t expecting a sellout crowd the opening night, which also featured national power Florida State, and the line of cars snaked throughout the industrial park in which the stadium resides.

Many fans hoping to catch the first UConn-Oregon matchup weren’t able to get into the ballpark until halfway through the game.

“We’re making sure we have the appropriate police in place, lights working efficiently, the traffic getting up here as best as we can. … We’re doing everything we can to make sure the parking is as efficient as possible. One of the things that we would be doing is using all three gates to park people to keep that flow at a more consistent pace.”

UConn (31-13-1, 15-3 Big East) holds a three-game lead over Pittsburgh with 11 games to play,” Weber said. “It is led by outfielder George Springer, who was named the conference’s player of the week the last two weeks.

Springer has 43 home runs, one shy of matching former teammate Mike Olt’s school record. The junior is projected as a first-round draft pick in next month’s major league draft.

Springer is hitting .371 with nine homers and 62 RBIs.

Another draft-worthy talent, Matt Barnes, is powering the pitching staff. The junior is 8-3 with a 1.41 ERA and three complete games.

After a successful, come-out-of-nowhere 2010 campaign, UConn knew it would have a target on its back. After getting off to a slow start, the Huskies have won 22 of 25 games.

“I think we’ve definitely felt that sort of pressure no matter how many times we talked about not feeling it,” Penders said “We certainly did feel that pressure early on in the season and you could see it with our play, our lack of hitting especially.

“In the last month or so, the last five to six weeks, we’ve been able to play up to our ability.”

Movers on Friday....hope to be back ASAP....I don't remember it being this hard the last time....of course that was 25 years ago...


Blogger lance aka lc said...

In case anybody is interested the fresno grizzlies and the rockcats radio broadcasts can be heard on nobex radio companion which is a free blackberry app. Kjzn 105.5 and wtic 2 are the stations, which are probably available on android and iphones as well.

11:42 PM

Blogger Dfensfan said...

Hoch to West Michigan

11:27 PM


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