April 21, 2011
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Marshall University baseball team will play its second away series in league action with a trip to Hattiesburg, Miss., to take on the 19th-ranked Southern Miss Golden Eagles in a three-game series beginning Friday. First pitch between the two teams will take place at 7 p.m. ET at Pete Taylor Park. The two squads will play a doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 3 p.m. ET
Live video streaming through All-Access, radio broadcast, stats and game chat will be available throughout the series by logging onto HerdZone.com.
SERIES SCHEDULE & PITCHING MATCHUPS
Game 1: Fri., 7 p.m. ET
MU: RHP Shane Farrell (2-1, 2.95 ERA)
USM: RHP Todd McInnis (6-1, 2.54 ERA)
Matchup: McInnis is one of the top pitchers in C-USA history and has struck out 56 batters in 56.2 innings on the season. In his career, McInnis has struggled against the Herd, in three career starts he owns a 0-2 record giving up 13 runs (all earned) on 23 hits with a walk-to-strikeout ratio of 8 to 5. Farrell has rested the last two weeks and is fully capable of backing his 2.95 ERA for the Herd on Friday night.
Game 2: Sat., 3 p.m. ET
MU: LHP Mike Mason (1-2, 4.47 ERA)
USM: RHP Geoffrey Thomas (7-2, 2.65 ERA)
Matchup: Thomas will be making his first start of his career against the Herd, while MU counters with Mason who produced a solid outing against the Golden Eagles in 2010. The southpaw worked the first five innings, giving up three earned runs on four hits with a career-high 10 strikeouts in a no decision. Mason is coming off one of his best outings of his career, tossing a career-high 7.1 innings against Houston, giving up just two earned runs on seven hits but did not figure in the decison. He struck out eight and did not walk a batter.
Game 3: Sat., 7 p.m. ET
MU: RHP Arik Sikula (2-3, 3.31 ERA)
USM: RHP Jonathan Thompson (4-0, 3.77 ERA)
Matchup: Sikula has been electric in his career against the USM, owning a 1.59 ERA in five career appearances totaling 17 innings. Last season, the righty logged seven innings giving up three runs (all unearned) with one walk and five strikeouts to earn the Sunday afternoon victory and take two-of-three from the Golden Eagles. In fact, over his last 11.1 innings of work against USM, Sikula has not yielded an earned run striking out 10 and walking just two. USM is hitting .190 against the right-hander during his career.
MU Hitter to Watch: Victor Gomez, 1B
Gomez has turned it on the late as of late, raising his season average to .281 thanks to going 7-for-19, with two doubles, a triple, homer and four RBI over his last five games. He has been slugging at a .737 percentage and reaching base at a .429 clip during the span. In his career against Southern Miss, Gomez is hitting .340 (18-for-53) with six doubles, three homers and 18 RBI in 12 games.
USM Hitter to Watch: B.A. Vollmuth, SS
Vollmuth is easily one of the most dangerous hitters not only in the Eagles lineup but the entire conference. He enters the weekend with 10 homers on the season and has been a mainstay in the USM lineup all season. Last year, MU arms were able to contain the slugger, holding him to a .182 (2-for-11) average with two runs and two RBI.
Last Season Look Back
After getting waxed in first game of the series, 16-7, the Herd bounced back to take the last two games by identical scores of 6-3 at Power Park in Charleston during 2010. Marshall hit .313 (31-for-99) for the series as USM hit a mere .255 (26-for-122). Despite being outscored 22 to 19, MU was still able to take two of three.
Game 1: Southern Miss 16, Marshall 7
The Golden Eagles pounded out 18 hits and used a seven-run second inning to win the first game of the series. Six different USM hitters produced multi-hit games, including Kameron Brunty who went 3-for-4 with six RBI. Marshall received a three-hit day from outfielder Ben Jurevicius in the loss. The two teams combine for 14 runs in the first two frames (eight for USM, six for MU).
Game 2: Marshall 6, Southern Miss 3
Victor Gomez hit a two-out two-run double in the bottom of the seventh to break a 3-3 tie and five relievers combined to keep the Golden Eagles off the scoreboard in relief of Mike Mason. Mason struck out a career-high 10 batters in five innings of work, while Alfredo Brito laced three hits and had two RBI in the victory.
Game 3: Marshall 6, Southern Miss 3
Arik Sikula pitches seven innings without allowing an earned run, while Victor Gomez was a triple shy of the cycle to take the rubber match by a 6-3 score. Kenny Socorro added two hits and two RBI for the winners.
Midweek Roundup: Marshall 4, Eastern Kentucky 2
Six relief pitchers blanked the EKU offense over the final 6.2 innings as the Herd would earn a come-from-behind victory at the Kennedy Center. Victor Gomez, Kenny Socorro and Steven Ross each ripped a pair of hits in the win.