Hawks will play Elizabeth City State on Tuesday, North Carolina Central on Wednesday
March 19, 2012
Game Notes - UMES in North Carolina
Listen Live to the N.C. Central game on the Hawks Radio Network!
ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. - As the campus is off for Spring Break, the Hawks head to the Tar Heel State for a pair of mid-week games. On Tuesday, the Hawks take on Elizabeth City State for a 2 p.m. matinee. Then on Wednesday, UMES heads to Durham for a game scheduled at 6 p.m. against North Carolina Central.
Both of these games are non-conference matchups. Although North Carolina Central is a MEAC member, the game will not count towards conference play. UMES began its season in North Carolina at Gardner-Webb and will make its final regular season trip to the state with these games.
JOHNSON NAMED PRESEASON ALL-MEAC
The Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference has announced that Hawks outfielder Tre-Von Johnson has been named to the 2012 Preseason All-MEAC Team. Last season as a sophomore, Johnson earned Second Team All-MEAC after finishing with a .359 average as the UMES leadoff hitter, including 11 doubles and three triples. He led the Hawks with 15 stolen bases in 18 attempts plus contributed a .985 fielding percentage in 49 starts, primarily in center field.
HAWKS PICKED TO FINISH THIRD IN MEAC NORTH
UMES is selected to finish third in the newly-formed MEAC Northern Division, receiving 143 points. Delaware State is picked to take first with 192 points, just ahead of Norfolk State in second at 184 points. The Hawks are predicted to finish ahead of Coppin State, chosen to get fourth with 129 points. Bethune-Cookman, the reigning conference champion, is predicted to win the MEAC and the MEAC Southern Division.
The divisions were formed this season after the addition of North Carolina Central and Savannah State to the MEAC. Teams will only play conference games against division opponents.
LAST TIME: HAWKS SWEPT BY NORFOLK IN FIRST MEAC SERIES
Despite playing very close with Norfolk State in the bookend games of its first weekend conference series, UMES was swept by the Spartans in three games on the road. The Hawks fell 7-5 in game one, 8-1 in the seven inning contest and 5-2 on Sunday to fall to 0-19 overall and 0-3 in MEAC play. In games one and three, UMES had the tying run at the plate or closer in the final inning, but could not bridge the gap in either contest.
Stephen Bull extended his hitting streak to seven games after the series, going 5-for-14 (.417) from the leadoff spot. Shaquille Bagwell hit safely in all three games, driving home three runs and scoring one more. From the bullpen, Zachary Saca combined to throw 6.1 innings, allowing a total of four hits and no runs, striking out two.
NEWSOME SWINGING STRONG
James Newsome, one of two UMES players to start all 19 games, began the season with a six-game hitting streak and has hit safely in 15 of 19 games played He is currently hitting .268 with a .338 slugging percentage, sporting a team high five doubles and six RBI.
BUY IN THE BULL-MARKET
Stephen Bull has been the Hawks leadoff hitter in all but one game this season for UMES. In six of his last seven games, Bull has gotten as least two hits, hitting .452 (14-for-31) in that time, including three extra base hits.
SACA SOLID IN RELIEF
In his eight combined relief appearances this season, Zachary Saca has thrown 26 innings with just seven earned runs, earning a relief ERA of 2.42. Three of his relief appearances, coming against Indiana State, Cornell and Norfolk State, saw Saca throw over four innings with an earned run or less allowed.
From March 2nd through the 13th, Byron Campbell put together an eight-game hitting streak, the longest of the season for anyone on the team. He hit .375 (12-for-32) during that stretch with four RBI from the second spot in the order. His final game of that run, Campbell went 4-for-5 with a triple and a double against Mount St. Mary's, scoring a pair of runs and driving home two more. He has reached base in his last 12 games for the Hawks.
2011 IN REVIEW
Despite a 9-41 record last year, the Hawks more than doubled their conference victories from 2009, finishing with a 7-11 MEAC season and 5-seed in the conference tournament. UMES earned series victories over Florida A&M, sweeping the Rattlers, and Coppin State at home. After a first round loss to Delaware State, UMES earned its first conference tournament victory since 2007 with an 11-7 win over Florida A&M before falling to North Carolina A&T. Senior Bryan Chaikowsky became the first Hawk in over 20 years to earn First Team All-MEAC, while Tre-Von Johnson was named Second Team All-MEAC.
SCOUTING THE OPPONENTS:
Elizabeth City State, a school in the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association, is on a six-game losing streak to stand at 3-13. A new member of the MEAC Southern Division, North Carolina Central is 3-17, having lost its last four games, with a 2-4 conference record.
The Vikings are led by Elizabeth City local Justin Hooker, a junior infielder batting .400 with three hits in each in three of his last four games. Fellow junior infielder Johnny Pitt is the team's power threat, sporting a line of .339 with four home runs and 21 RBI. As a team, ECSU sports a .319 team batting average and a 6.94 ERA.
Eagles junior left fielder Luis Diaz leads the team in many offensive categories, including batting average at .364, home runs with three and RBI with 14. NCCU's center fielder, junior Nate Smith, is batting .284 with 14 runs scored and is a perfect 6-6 on stolen base attempts. The team is batting .240 and has an ERA of 7.51 going into Tuesday.
BIG GAME BRANDON
Hawks starting catcher Brandon Schott, named a team captain in his first year with the program, has a trio of three-hit games for UMES. No other Hawk has more than one such game. He is currently hitting .264 with the team's top slugging percentage at .377.
UMES BASEBALL RETURNS TO WGOP 540 AM
WGOP, a 500-watt station based out of Pocomoke City, is the exclusive home for UMES baseball, women's basketball and volleyball and will air all home and select away games this season. Dave Vatz returns for his second season as the voice of Hawks baseball.