Feb. 21, 2012
The Navy baseball team will open its 2012 home schedule on Wednesday when it plays host to Maryland Eastern Shore. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. at Terwilliger Brothers Field at Max Bishop Stadium.
Navy enters Wednesday's contest at 2-1 on the season after taking two-of-three games from North Carolina A&T last weekend. UMES is 0-3 on the year after being swept by Gardner-Webb in a three-game set.
Midweek Quick Hitters...
Freshman David Wiedeman was named Patriot League Player of the Week and junior Ben Nelson was named Patriot League Pitcher of the Week, it was announced by the conference on Monday ... Wiedeman posted a .364 batting average and had five RBIs in the three-game set, while Nelson didn't allow a run, struck out six and yielded just three hits in his Opening Day win.
After picking up his 10th-career save in Navy's 3-1 win over North Carolina A&T, Joel Rinehart is now one save from moving into a tie with Ryan Hefner for second place on Navy's all-time saves list.
In surrendering just eight earned runs in last weekend's games, the Navy pitching staff enters Wednesday's game with a team ERA of 2.77 ... Nelson, Rinehart, Zach Sipe, Stephen Moore and Brad Borosak combined to throw 17.1 innings without surrendering an earned run.
Navy received strong contributions from its underclassmen last weekend, as sophomores Chance Jones (.400), Greg Bryant (.333) and Kash Manzelli (.300) and Wiedemen (.364) all had multiple hits in the three-game set.
Alex Azor had two hits in the season opener and now has a career total of 162 ... Azor is now tied with Marcus Lee for 14th place on Navy's all-time hits list.
Through three games, the Navy pitching staff already has a total of 30 strikeouts. Last season, it took the Mids' staff six games to reach 30 Ks.
A total of six freshmen made their collegiate debuts last weekend, including: Wiedeman, Moore, Borosak, Cannon, Grant LaTerza and Anthony Parenti.
Navy in Home Openers
Navy has an all-time record of 76-37-3 in home openers, while head coach Paul Kostacopoulos is 3-2-1 in home openers at Navy.
Navy's last home opener against UMES came two years ago when the Mids recorded a 12-10 comeback win over the Hawks on Feb. 24, 2010.
About Maryland Eastern Shore
The Hawks led in the first two games of their three-game set at Gardner-Webb last weekend, but couldn't hold on as they wound up dropping all three contests (11-4, 8-4, 7-0) ... As a team, the Hawks are hitting .242, led by junior Tre-von Johnson, who went 6-for-12 last weekend ... Senior James Newsome leads UMES in RBIs with three ... On the mound, the Hawks have a team ERA of 7.12 and have a total of 10 strikeouts and 18 walks.
Navy leads the all-time series, 19-2, and has won the last 15 games between the two teams. Last season, the Midshipmen defeated the Hawks, 10-3, in Annapolis on April 19, and then won, 14-3, on May 8 in Princess Anne.
Navy will travel to Kinston, N.C., for the second-annual Freedom Classic where it will meet Air Force in a three-game set. Friday's opener is scheduled for 6 p.m.