April 29, 2013
NEW ORLEANS - For the last time during the regular season, the Tulane Green Wave baseball program will play back-to-back midweek games, as they will welcome the Southeastern Louisiana Lions to Greer Field at Turchin Stadium on Tuesday night, while the New Orleans Privateers make a stop on the Uptown campus on Wednesday.
Tuesday's contest against Southeastern Louisiana will start at 6:30pm CT, and it can be heard on 88.3 FM. The Wednesday tilt against UNO will begin at 5pm CT and will be broadcast on 106.1 The Ticket.
Tulane is returning from a four-game road swing in which they were defeated by the nationally ranked LSU Tigers last Wednesday before going to Charleston, W. Va., to play Marshall in a three-game Conference USA series. After dropping the opening game in that series, the two teams squared off in a doubleheader on Saturday, with Tulane sweeping the twin bill for the first Conference USA doubleheader sweep for them since accomplishing the feat against ECU in 2008. With the two wins, Tulane pulled their record back up to .500 at 22-22, and are in a sixth-place tie with Houston - this weekend's foe - at 7-8 in the conference standings.
The Lions are 28-17 on the year after defeating Texas A&M - Corpus Christi twice in three games over the weekend. They, too, played a doubleheader on Saturday, but split the games. The week prior to that, they lost to Louisiana-Lafayette by a score of 6-3.
UNO went 1-1 against LSU-Alexandria last weekend after losing seven straight to the likes of Jackson State, Oklahoma, Southeastern Louisiana and the Green Wave. On the year, the Privateers are 7-39.
Tulane has played both midweek opponents three times this year, and leads both series 2-1. When Tulane last defeated UNO on April 17, they won the First NBC Cup that is awarded to the annual winner of the series between the Green Wave and the Privateers.
On Tuesday, the Greenies will send righty redshirt sophomore Randy LeBlanc to the mound for his fourth straight midweek start. LeBlanc pitched very well against LSU last week in a losing effort, allowing only four hits over 5.1 innings. Prior to that, he earned back-to-back Tuesday victories over in-state rivals Louisiana-Lafayette and Louisiana-Monroe. On the season, the Abita Springs, La., is 2-3 with a 5.73 ERA in 37.2 innings. He has allowed 36 hits while striking out 19.
Southeastern Louisiana will send a familiar face to the mound, as lefty Kyle Cedotal will start his third game against the Green Wave this year. During his last start against Tulane on March 12 between in Hammond, La., Cedotal went 3.0 innings striking out three and allowing five hits in a no decision during the Lions 7-4 victory. The freshman is 4-4 with a 5.11 ERA in 37 innings this year.
Wednesday will see another start for senior Andrew Reeves, who made his season debut against New Orleans on April 17. On that date, Reeves earned his first win on the campaign after pitching a controlled start of 3.0 innings, striking out three and allowing no hits. Last Wednesday, he allowed two hits in the loss against LSU during his only other outing on the year.
The Privateers will send righty sophomore Alex Smith to the hill. Smith is arguably UNO's top arm, as he has the lowest ERA of any starter on the staff (4.14), while he is first on the team in wins with three and second on the team in strikeouts with 47. In 87.0 innings, he has allowed 82 hits and 27 walks.
The Green Wave bats woke up during the weekend series against Marshall, as they recorded nine hits in the first two contests before notching 12 during game two of the doubleheader. Junior Andrew Garner went on a tear last week, as he went 10-for-18 at the plate (.556) with four RBIs and three stolen bases during the last four games. Senior Brennan Middleton - who collected his 200th career hit against Marshall in game one of the doubleheader - still leads the team with a .298 average. His 54 hits in C-USA are the third most in the league.
Southeastern Louisiana is hitting .268 as a squad, and is led at the dish by Jameson Fisher and his .327 average. Fisher also leads the team with three home runs, but is only fourth on the squad with 22 RBIs. Harry Slade (30), Aaron Haag (29) and Ben Hernandez (24) all have more RBIs, and Hernandez and Slade both hit over .300, with respective batting averages of .315 and .305. Slade leads the squad with 10 stolen bases.
UNO's Zach Liberto is their top hitter, as he is hitting at a clip of .279. Jonathan Coco, Reese Kanter and Chaz Boyer are all tied for the team lead in home runs with two each. Zacary Hawkins is the pace setter in the RBI category with 21. As a squad, the Privateers are hitting .229.
After the two midweek games, the Greenies will host C-USA rival Houston at Greer Field at Turchin Stadium on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
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