Jan. 30, 2013
Boca Raton, FL - Florida Atlantic University's baseball team begins the season by playing eight home games in February. These opponents range from in-state rivals to some programs from top conferences.
FAUSports.com gets you prepared by taking a look at some of the opponents coming to Boca Raton this spring. The first capsule examines the February games.
The Owls open the 2013 season hosting the University of Cincinnati from Friday, February 15 through Sunday, February 17. Prior to the series opener, members of the 2012 Sun Belt Conference championship team will receive their rings. Also, junior pitcher Kevin Alexander will be honored as the program's fall Iron Owl winner.
Below is a capsule preview of the first four opponents coming to the FAU Baseball Stadium this spring.
Friday, February 15 at 6:30 p.m.
Saturday, February 16 at 2 p.m.
Sunday, February 17 at noon
Head Coach John McCormack and Cincinnati Head Coach Brian Cleary were high-school teammates at Boca Raton's Pope John Paul II High School. The two are pictured here with their high school coach prior to a series in 2010.
2012 Record: 18-38 (7-20 Big East)
Head Coach/Record/Year: Brian Cleary/412-497-1/17th season
Top Returning Players: Outfielder Justin Glass led the team with a .366 batting average, 83 hits, 21 doubles, 39 runs scored and 15 stolen bases; Pitcher Thomas Gentile posted a 3.22 earned run average and made a team-high 23 appearances; Pitcher Christian McElroy led the team with four victories and made nine starts last season.
Wednesday, February 20 at 6:30 p.m.
The Owls won the season series from the Hurricanes in 2011, winning two of the three meetings. One of those triumphs was a 7-4 victory during the first week of the season.
2012 Record: 36-23 (16-14 Atlantic Coast Conference)
Head Coach: Jim Morris/850-346-3 in his 20th season at Miami; 1354-583-4 in his 32nd season overall.
Top Returning Players: Infielder Brad Fieger had a team-best 66 hits and 14 doubles while posting a .295 batting average in 2012; Pitcher A.J. Salcines made 39 appearances and had seven saves. Salcines had a 3-0 record with a 1.40 earned run average; Pitcher Eric Whaley had 63 strikeouts and had a 2.68 ERA with four victories in 14 starts last season.
Friday, February 22 at 6:30 p.m.
Saturday, February 23 at 4 p.m.
Sunday, February 24 at 1 p.m.
FAU swept a three-game series in Tuscaloosa to begin the 2012 season. The series sweep marked the first time since 1899 that the Crimson Tide has been swept at home in a three-game non-conference series. The Owls have won the last four games against Alabama, capturing the 2002 regional title.
2012 Record: 21-34 (9-21 SEC)
Head Coach/Record/Years: Mitch Gaspard/98-87 in fourth season at Alabama; 308-225 in ninth season overall.
Returning Players: Catcher Brett Booth started 55 games and leads returning positional players with four home runs, 32 runs batted in and four home runs; Outfielder/catcher Ben Moore hit .342 during freshman campaign in 2012 with 10 doubles; Pitcher Justin Kamplain leads five returning starting pitchers with 46 strikeouts and a 3.71 earned run average.
FLORIDA GULF COAST
Tuesday, February 26 at 6:30 p.m.
FAU did not host the Fort Myers-based school last season. Weather postponed the second meeting in the annual series. The initial home game was relocated to FGCU when Florida Atlantic hosted President Barack Obama on April 10.
2012 Record: 26-31 (15-12 Atlantic Sun)
Head Coach/Record/Years: Dave Tollett/357-196-2/11th season
Returning Players: Pitcher Ricky Knapp, the 2012 Atlantic Sun Conference Pitcher of the Year had three complete-game shutouts and set a single-season record with 111.1 innings; Infielder Brandon Bednar, led team with .306 batting average, hits (66) and at-bats 216. Also scored 29 runs and drove in 33 runs; Infielder Sean Dwyer, started all 57 games and ranked second on the team with 39 RBIs. He had a .297 batting average and earned A-Sun All-Tournament team honors.
Season tickets are available by contacting the FAU Ticket Office at 1-866-FAU-OWLS.