Nationally-Seeded Titans To Open 2008 Fullerton Regional Versus Rider
May 28, 2008
ON THE TUBE: ESPNU will be televising every game of the Fullerton Regional and will be called by Clay Matvick and Kyle Peterson. Check your local listings for ESPNU's channel on your satellite or cable network.
TRACKING THE GAME: Follow all 16 Regionals via your web browser with CBS College Sports' GameTracker. Go to the bottom of fullertontitans.com or go to the baseball schedule page to link to GameTracker, or go to cstv.com to find the desired game.
AUDIO BROADCASTS: Audio broadcasts of all Titan postseason games will be brought to you live on fullertontitans.com. Go to the home page and click the banner with the microphone on the right hand side...pick your game and that's it. You are there!
Friday, May 30
Game 1: UCLA (2), vs. Virginia (3), 4:06 p.m. PT
Game 2: Cal State Fullerton (1) vs. Rider (4), 8:06 p.m. PT
Saturday, May 31
Game 3: Loser of Game 1 vs. Loser of Game 2, 4:06 p.m. PT
Game 4: Winner of Game 1 vs. Winner of Game 2, 8:06 p.m. PT
Sunday, June 1
Game 5: Winner of Game 3 vs. Loser of Game 4, 4:06 p.m. PT
Game 6: Winner of Game 5 vs. Winner of Game 4, 8:06 p.m. PT
Monday, June 2
Game 7: Repeat of Game 6 If Necessary, 8:06 p.m. PT
THE FULLERTTON REGIONAL FIELD:
RIDER BRONCS (Lawrenceville, New Jersey): Enrollment: 5,800
&\#8232; Rider (29-26) is making its first NCAA Regional appearance since 1994 after&\#8232;winning the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Tournament and automatic&\#8232;playoff berth with a 12-5 win over Siena at Waterfront Park in Trenton, New&\#8232;Jersey. This is the Broncs' ninth regional since 1984 but its first MAAC&\#8232;title. They placed fourth in the regular season with a 13-10 record but went 3-1 in the tourney: 4-3 over Canisius, 3-0 over Siena, 8-9 loss in 10&\#8232;innings to Siena and the final.
Coach Barry Davis is in his fourth season at Rider with an overall record of&\#8232;95-115. He previously was head coach at Georgia Southwestern State (NAIA)&\#8232;from 2001-04 and prior to that was at the community college level. The former shortstop is a graduate of Bridgewater College in Virginia.
The team batting average is .285 led by a quartet that has collectively&\#8232;started virtually every game. Third baseman Mason Heyne is the leader at&\#8232;.339 followed by left fielder Mo Williams (.338), rightfielder Jamie Hayes&\#8232;(.335 with 37 stolen bases in 44 attempts) and first baseman Sean Olson&\#8232;(.330), who leads the team with 11 home runs and 52 RBI. Hayes also is the&\#8232;team's closer and was on the Brett Wallace Award watch list. He is 3-2 with&\#8232;11 saves and a 3.26 ERA in 21 games. The top winners are right-hander Jimmer&\#8232;Kennedy (7-4, 3.91) and lefthander Mike Thomas (6-3, 4.22). The staff ERA&\#8232;is 5.85.
Rider did not play an institution located west of the Mississippi River this&\#8232;season.
VIRGINIA CAVALIERS (Charlottesville, Va.): Enrollment: 20,399
Virginia (38-21) is making a school-record fifth consecutive NCAA Regional&\#8232;appearance and eighth overall. The Cavaliers are an at-large entry after&\#8232;going 15-15 for fourth place in the Atlantic Coast Conference regular season&\#8232;and 2-2 in the post-season tournament in Jacksonville, Florida, beating&\#8232;North Carolina (8-7) and Florida State (5-3) before losing to Wake Forest&\#8232;(4-7) and champion Miami (4-8). The Cavaliers have hosted three recent&\#8232;regionals and traveled to Corvallis, Oregon, in 2005.
Virginia never has played a school from the state of California and is 3-0&\#8232;vs. Rider. The Cavaliers were 31-9 at home this year but only 5-10 on the&\#8232;road and 2-2 on neutral a diamond.
Coach Brian O'Connor is in his fifth year with an overall record of 215-87.&\#8232;He is a 1993 graduate of Creighton.
Virginia is batting .290 as a team and has stolen 134 bases in 168 attempts.&\#8232;The top hitters are left fielder Dan Grovatt (.332), shortstop Greg Miclat&\#8232;(.322 with 30 SBs in 36 tries), first baseman Jeremy Farrell (.320 with 11&\#8232;HRs and 51 RBI) and centerfielder John Barr (.314). The top pitchers are&\#8232;lefthander Matt Packer (6-2, 1.16 ERA), righthander Jacob Thompson (6-4,&\#8232;4.40), lefthander Neal Davis (4-0, 1.58) and righthanded closer Michael&\#8232;Schwimer (3-1 with 13 saves, 1.84 and 367 strikeouts in 29.1 innings). The&\#8232;team ERA is 3.88.&\#8232;
UCLA BRUINS (Los Angeles, Calif.): Enrollment: 36,890
UCLA (31-25) is making its 15th NCAA Regional appearance, its fourth in the&\#8232;last five years and third in a row for the first time. UCLA finished third&\#8232;in the Pac-10 with a 13-11 record. The Bruins were a combined 10-16 against&\#8232;the 63 other teams in the NCAA field including 0-3 in midweek games vs. Cal&\#8232;State Fullerton. It never has played Virginia or Rider.
UCLA played in the 2007 Super Regional at Fullerton and lost twice, 12-2 and&\#8232;2-1. The only other post-season competition between the two largest schools&\#8232;in California came back in the Fresno Regional in 1979 when UCLA won the&\#8232;opener, 5-4, but lost the final two games to the eventual national champion&\#8232;Titans, 9-2 and 9-5.
Coach John Savage is in his fourth season with an overall record of 112-119&\#8232;at UCLA and 200-203-1 including three years at UC Irvine. He is a 1991&\#8232;graduate of Nevada.
The Bruins' offense revolves around its infielders. Second baseman Alden&\#8232;Carrithers is the top hitter (.380 with 17 stolen bases in 23 attempts)&\#8232;followed by first baseman Casey Haerther (.326 with 10 HRs and 49 RBI),&\#8232;third baseman Jermaine Curtis (.296) and shortstop Brandon Crawford (.296).
The top starting pitchers are lefthander Tim Murphy (5-6, 3.52 ERA),&\#8232;lefthander Gavin Brooks (6-2, 4.91) and righthander Charles Brewer (8-4,&\#8232;5.09). The team ERA is 4.43.
TITANS NAME WILSON GAME ONE STARTER: Brian Wilson (RHP, Jr., San Diego, Calif./ Loyola Marymount) will be making his first start of the year for Cal State Fullerton on Friday night against Rider. Despite not having made any starts this season, Wilson is no stranger opening the game on the mound. Wilson made 19 career starts from 2006-2007 for his former school Loyola Marymount, posting a 6-7 overall record for the Lions.
This year, Wilson has posted a 1-2 record for the Titans, with a 5.32 ERA and one save in 19 appearances. Wilson's longest outing of the year came on Apr. 23 against Arizona State, a game in which he struck out a season-high 6 Sun Devils. His only win of the season came on Feb. 24 at TCU with a scoreless, two-hit, 2.1-inning effort.
A RUN AT HISTORY: Dave Serrano has a chance for a Div. I collegiate baseball coaching first in&\#8232;2008. Only nine coaches have taken more than one institution to the College&\#8232;World Series but none have done it in consecutive years. (Serrano took UC&\#8232;Irvine to Omaha in 2007).&\#8232;&\#8232;
Dave Van Horn got there two years apart with Nebraska in 2002 and Arkansas&\#8232;in 2004 and Larry Cochell did likewise with Fullerton in 1990 and Oklahoma&\#8232;in 1992. The other multiple-school coaches are: Tom Petroff (Rider and&\#8232;Northern Colorado), Dave Snow (LMU and Long Beach State), Jack Stallings&\#8232;(Florida State and Georgia Southern), Augie Garrido (Fullerton and Texas),&\#8232;Pat McMahon (Mississippi State and Florida). Ron Polk (Georgia Southern,&\#8232;Mississippi State and Georgia) and Andy Lopez (Pepperdine, Florida and&\#8232;Arizona). Cochell also took Cal State L.A. to the CWS.&\#8232;
CSF REGIONAL HISTORY: &\#149; This is Fullerton's 30th NCAA Regional Appearance in its 34th year of Div. I&\#8232;baseball. The exceptions were 1985, 1986,1989 and 2001. The current string&\#8232;of 17 CONSECUTIVE appearances is third longest in the nation behind Miami&\#8232;(36) and Florida State (31). Clemson's string was snapped this year at 21.&\#8232;&\#8232;
&\#149; Fullerton has won five regionals in a row and 16 total - including a&\#8232;national-best 11 on the road (two each in Fresno and Baton Rouge and one&\#8232;each at USC, Austin, Starkville, Stillwater, South Bend, Tempe and San&\#8232;Diego). The Titans NEVER hosted a regional before 2000 but this is their&\#8232;seventh at home - they lost the first and have won the last five - in the&\#8232;past nine years (exceptions at Stanford in 2002 and at San Diego in 2007).&\#8232;&\#8232; &\#149; Fullerton's all-time regional record is 78-33 (.703) including 19-5 at&\#8232;Goodwin Field.
&\#149; The last time the Titans were absent for NCAA Regional play was 1991 under Augie Garrido.
&\#149; No 0-2 and BBQ... The Titans have never gone winless in Regional or Super Regional play. They have however gone winless in the College World Series four times (1975, 1982, 1990 and 2007).
SUPER REGIONAL ERA &\#149; Since the Super Regional format was begun in 1999, Miami is the only school&\#8232;to win more regional tournaments (8) than Fullerton (7 -- Clemson, Florida&\#8232;State, Rice, South Carolina also with 7). Looking ahead, Fullerton would be&\#8232;trying to improve its national lead in Super Regional victories. The Titans&\#8232;are 6-1 to lead Texas (5-0), Stanford (5-1), Rice (5-2) and Miami (5-3) in&\#8232;Super Regional wins and berths into the College World Series.