April 29, 2013
Last Week: 4-1
Tuesday - Win vs. Kennesaw State, 2-0 in Cullowhee
Wednesday - Loss at #13 Clemson, 12-1 in Clemson, S.C.
Friday - Win at UNCG, 7-4 in Greensboro
Saturday - Win at UNCG, 10-7 in Game One and 15-5 in Game Two in Greensboro
Wednesday - Away at Kennesaw State, 5:00 pm
Friday - Home vs. Tennessee Tech, 6:00 pm
Saturday - Home vs. Tennessee Tech, 2:00 pm
Sunday - OFF
Fans can follow Wednesday's road at Kennesaw State on the Catamount Sports Network with streaming audio (free) through CatamountSports.com. This weekend's two home games can be followed with live video streaming (subscription) through Catamount All-Access and live GameTracker (free) online at www.CatamountSports.com.
Catamount Diamond Notes:
- Western Carolina went 4-1 last week, splitting its two midweek games before sweeping the weekend SoCon series at UNCG ... WCU capped its nine-game home stand (8-1) with a 2-0 victory over Kennesaw State in the front-end of a home-and-home with the Owls with Aaron Attaway breaking a scoreless tie with a home run and Tyler White doubling home an insurance run ... the Catamounts then fell at No. 13 Clemson on Wednesday, 12-1;
- WCU swept its third-straight Southern Conference series, taking all three games from UNCG in Greensboro over the weekend, stretching its SoCon winning streak to11-straight (also sweeping Samford and Georgia Southern) ... It is the first time since 1998 under then head coach Rodney Hennon that WCU has swept three-straight SoCon series, defeating league-foes Davidson, VMI and Furman ... the Catamounts have won at least two games in seven of their eight SoCon series this spring;
- With 30 wins on the season, Western Carolina secured 30 victories in a season for the 25th time since 1984 and the 10th 30+ win season since 2000 ... the Catamounts were the first team in the SoCon to reach the 30-win plateau;
- Western Carolina finished the month of April with a 14-4 overall record and an 11-1 mark in Southern Conference play ... It was the best April for WCU since posting a 14-4 overall mark and an 11-2 SoCon mark during the 2007 season ... 2007 was the last time WCU won a regular season championship, garnering an at-large bid to the NCAA Chapel Hill regional;
- Western Carolina moved up in the CollegeBaseballDaily.com's Mid-Major Poll this week on the heels of its third-straight SoCon series sweep, ranking in at No. 22, advancing three spots ... the Catamounts returned to "Others Receiving Votes" status following its three-game sweep of Samford and were at No. 25 after sweeping Georgia Southern ... The Catamounts opened the season ranked 14th in the poll, advancing six positions after taking 2-of-3 from Washington State on opening weekend to rank eighth ... A season ago, WCU did not appear in the CBD.com poll until week three, topping out at 17th on April 2nd;
- Entering this week, WCU ranks fourth in the SoCon in batting average at .298 collectively on the season, but leads the league in hits (501) including a league-high 114 doubles and is tied with Samford for the SoCon lead in slugging percentage (.462) ... WCU additionally ranks second in runs scored (310), home runs (45) and RBI (281) ... As a team, WCU has the most plate appearances (1,948), at bats (1,681) and total bases (776);
- Western Carolina's pitching staff continues to lead the SoCon with 387 strikeouts and innings pitched with 423.2, while ranking third in team ERA at 4.44 and opposing team batting average (.279) ... the Catamounts' 30 wins and 15 saves also lead the conference ... Jeremy Null - a two-time National Player of the Week - ranks second in the SoCon with 80 strikeouts while Jordan Smith ranks second in the SoCon by limiting opponents to just a .232 batting average against;
- WCU's 37 double plays turned rank tied for third in the league with the team's .962 fielding percentage ranking fourth overall.
- Western Carolina continues to LEAD the nation in doubles with 114 on the season ... the 45 home runs by WCU ranks tied for fourth in the country while the 501 hits by the Catamounts ranks tied for fifth in the nation in the most recent NCAA stats released late Monday ... WCU's pitching staff has a 0.239 strikeout per nine inning ratio to rank 16th in the country;
- Individually, Tyler White's 22 doubles rank him tied for FIRST in the NCAA while his 10 home runs have him tied for 21st nationally ... His 50 RBI have him ranked 16th in the nation ... Aaron Attaway's team-leading 74 hits ranks him SIXTH nationally with Tyler White tied for 14th with 68 base knocks ... Jeremy Null ranks tied for 17th nationally with 80 strikeouts, a number that jumps to SEVENTH nationally when looking at strikeouts per nine innings pitched (11.31);
Making a Case for Player of the Year Honors:
Several Catamounts are stating their case for SoCon Player of the Year accolades - atop the list are infielders, senior Tyler White and junior Aaron Attaway:
- The duo enter this week ranked 1-and-2 in terms of total hits, Attaway with a league-leading 74 and White with 68 ... White leads the SoCon with 22 doubles and is tied for fourth with 10 home runs, seventh in the league in slugging percentage (.606) and ranks second in total RBI with 50 ... Attaway is just behind his teammate in slugging percentage at .567 on the year and has 42 RBI to rank seventh with his nine home runs tied for ninth ... Attaway also ranks tied for first in the SoCon in fielding assists with 128.
Look at Remaining SoCon Games for Top Six (SoCon Record as of 4/29/13):
Western Carolina (18-6): vs. WOF (9-15); at APP (11-11)
The Citadel (14-7): vs. DAV (8-16); vs. CofC (12-8); at UNCG (6-15)
Elon (15-9): vs. APP (11-11); at SAM (9-11)
Col. of Charleston (12-8): at WOF (9-15); at CIT (14-7); vs. GSU (12-12)
Georgia Southern (12-12): vs. FUR (10-14); at CofC (12-8)
Appalachian State (11-11): vs. ELON (15-9); vs. WCU (18-6)
Catamount Career Charts Watch:
- WCU closer Preston Hatcher became WCU's all-time program leader in saves, finishing the week with his 13th career save in Saturday's win in game one that clinched the series victory for the Catamounts ... the Atlanta, Ga., native by-passed former Catamount reliever Ryan Foster (2000-03) who had 22 saves in his career ... Hatcher remains SECOND on WCU's single-season charts with 13 saves, just one shy of the regular season record holder Mike Manning who had 14 in 1994;
- Hatcher additionally moved into a tie for NINTH in school history with 81 career appearances ... He is tied with Dale Pilgrim who made 81 appearances from 1993-96 ... Hatcher leads the SoCon with 25 games finished this season;
- As a team, Western Carolina has 15 saves on the year, tied for the second-most in program history and matching the 1998, 2002 and 2007 Catamount squads ... the school's single-season saves record is 17 accomplished in the 2005 season;
- Senior infielder Tyler White remains EIGHTH in school history with 829 career at bats ... He also ranks 14th with 264 career base hits, 8th with 59 career doubles - just three shy of the top five ... White is also tied for fourth with Tim Hallam (2005-06) having been hit by 36 pitches during his WCU career;
- White's 22 doubles on the regular season rank him in a three-way tie with former Catamounts Brent Greer and Nick Liles, both of whom had 22 doubles in the 2009 season ... White is NINE doubles shy of the SoCon's single-season record of 31 held by Caleb More of ETSU in 2004;
- Junior RHP Jordan Smith remains 15th in the school ledgers for career strikeouts with 190 ... He is just 24 K's shy of the all-time program top 10 for strikeouts ... Smith's 40 career starts over the last three seasons rank him tied for 10th on the career ledger and among solid company ... Smith now has as many starts for the Purple & Gold as former Catamount - and current Minnesota Twins reliever, Jared Burton (40 from 2000-02) and WCU Hall of Famer, Jason Beverlin (40 from 1992-94).
This Week in Catamount Baseball:
- Western Carolina plays just three nonconference games this week including one midweek and a two-game series on the weekend ... the Catamounts travel to Kennesaw, Ga., for the back-end of a midweek home-and-home against the Owls on Wednesday night with first pitch at 5 pm ... WCU returns home to start a regular season-ending, five-game home stand with a two-game set against Ohio Valley Conference front-runner, Tennessee Tech (32-12) this weekend, playing Friday and Saturday;
- WCU claimed the first meeting with Kennesaw State, winning at home last Tuesday, 2-0, on the strength of solid pitching from Tyler Powell, Adam Curtis and Preston Hatcher and run-producing hits from Aaron Attaway and Tyler White ... the Catamounts won their most recent visit to Kennesaw State, 7-6, in 10 innings - Julian Ridings tied the game with his first collegiate home run with Bradley Strong doubling home the would-be game-winning run ... WCU is 8-4 all-time against the Owls including a 4-2 mark all-time on the road;
- The Catamounts host Tennessee Tech for a two-game set on Friday and Saturday ... it's the first meeting between the two purple-and-gold clad teams since a late-season meeting in Cookeville, Tenn., in the 2010 season ... WCU leads the all-time series which dates back to 1991 by a count of 12-4 including a 9-0 record in games played in Cullowhee.
Western Carolina's Weekly Projected Starter Pitchers:
Wed. R-Junior RHP Taylor Sandefur (1-0, 4.22) - first start since March 13 vs. Eastern Kentucky
Fri. - Soph. RHP Jeremy Null (5-2, 4.10) - Avg. 8.0 K's per start
Sat. - Jr. RHP Jordan Smith (4-3, 4.02) - Has won three-straight Sunday starts