May 15, 2014
Cullowhee, N.C. - The 2014 Southern Conference regular season title hangs in the balance over the next two days as defending champion Western Carolina hosts the Davidson Wildcats for three games at Childress Field / Hennon Stadium. The visiting Wildcats carry a percentage points lead over the second-place Catamounts in the overall standings entering the final regular season meetings as SoCon members. The winner of the series will claim the 2014 regular season championship.
Thursday's series opener is scheduled for a 5:00 pm first pitch with Friday's double-header slated for 2:00 pm. Between the games of Friday's twin bill, WCU will honor the nine senior members of its baseball team in a special on-field ceremony.
Fans are encouraged to check CatamountSports.com or follow WCU athletics on social media outlets on Facebook or on Twitter, @Catamounts, for any updates.
All three scheduled games of the final regular season series will be broadcast on the Catamount Sports Network with live streaming audio (free) and video (subscription) through Catamount All-Access online. Fans can also follow all three games on GameTracker (free) through CatamountSports.com.
Including snapping the nation's longest winning streak at 16-straight games with Tuesday's home victory over visiting Kennesaw State, Western Carolina (34-16, 17-6 SoCon) enters the final series of the regular season having won eight of its last 10 games on the season. All told, the Catamounts have won 23 of their last 30 games since the end of March. WCU has claimed six-straight home games and has wins in 12 of its last 14 home dates.
Western Carolina has claimed a league-high tying 21 conference championships all-time including 12 regular season championships to rank second in league history (The Citadel has 13) and nine tournament titles, the most all-time. WCU is vying to win back-to-back regular season championships for the first time since winning four-in-a-row between 1986 and 1989. The Catamounts would be the first repeat champion in the league since Elon claimed the 2008 and `09 crowns.
Davidson (28-14, 17-5 SoCon), which will play its first games in over a week, enters the three-game, two-day series atop the conference standings by percentage points over the Catamounts. The Wildcats have just one SoCon regular season title all-time, claiming the South Division back in 1985.
WCU and Davidson have met 114 times previously on the baseball diamond with the Catamounts holding an 88-26 lead in the all-time series which dates back to 1977. WCU has played host to Davidson in Cullowhee a combined 13 times in conference play previously winning all 13 series including sweeping the series six times.
All told, WCU has won the past 13, three-game series against Davidson dating back to 2001, sweeping the Wildcats six times. The Catamounts have won 2-of-3 over the Wildcats in each of the past three seasons.
- Western Carolina is 20-3 in games played inside the friendly confines of Childress Field / Hennon Stadium in Cullowhee ... Davidson brings a 7-8 road record into the series;
- WCU clinched the 2013 regular season championship in the next-to-last weekend a year ago, celebrating on the home field in Cullowhee after taking the first two games against Wofford;
- WCU has dropped two conference series this year, losing 2-of-3 in both - at home against the Furman Paladins and last weekend at Georgia Southern ... the Catamounts have scored SoCon series sweeps over three foes - Wofford, UNCG and Appalachian State - while also taking the only two games played against The Citadel ... Davidson has not lost a season series in 2014, and has won 10-straight dating back to 2013 ... In the 28 games played, the Wildcats are 21-7;
Projected Pitching Match-Ups:
Thursday: WCU - RHP Jordan Smith (8-4, 3.09 ERA) vs. DAV - RHP Danny Mooney (5-3, 2.29 ERA)
Friday Gm 1: WCU - RHP Jeremy Null (5-3, 2.73 ERA) vs. DAV - RHP Nick Neitzel (7-0, 3.29 ERA)
Friday Gm 2: WCU - LHP Bryan Sammons (7-2, 4.50 ERA) vs. DAV - TBA