Mount Baseball Travels to Long Island for Four-Game NEC Series
Mount St. Mary's (12-26, 6-18 NEC) at Long Island
(22-15, 14-5 NEC)
LIU Field, Brooklyn, N.Y.
Friday, April 29, 2011, 3 pm
Saturday, April 30, 2011, 1 pm (DH)
Sunday, May 1, 2011, 1 pm
MOUNT UPDATE: Mount St. Mary's lost a pair of midweek games to fall to 12-26 overall. The Mount, which has lost 13 in a row, is 6-18 in NEC play. Senior Shane Eyler had a pair of hits in the Mount's 11-2 loss to Bucknell on Tuesday, giving the senior 200 hits for his career. The Mount fell to UMBC, 7-2, on Wednesday with Brandon Scott and Zach Helman each having two hits in the game. The Mount's 13-game losing streak is the longest by a Mount team since the 2008 squad lost the first 15 games of the year. That season, the Mount rebounded to win the NEC Tournament and earn a spot in the NCAA Tournament.
ABOUT THE BLACKBIRDS: Long Island enters this weekend's four-game series 22-15 overall and 14-5 in the NEC, one-half game back of NEC leader Monmouth. Long Island lost to Lafayette, 13-10, on Wednesday afternoon despite Pete Leonello's 3-for-5 day with two triples, three runs scored and three RBI. Tyler Jones leads LIU and the Northeast Conference with a .432 average this season while Leonello is hitting .323 with a team-high 35 runs scored. Drew Walsh is the top power hitter with a .318 average, 13 doubles, three home runs and 31 RBI. On the mound, Matt McCormick is 5-1 with a 3.14 ERA while Justin Topa is 5-6 with a 4.50 ERA and a team-high 46 strikeouts. The Blackbirds are 15-7 over their past 22 games.
THE ALL-TIME SERIES vs. LONG ISLAND: Long Island holds a 40-22 advantage in the all-time series with the Mount since the move to Division I in 1989. Last year, the teams split a four-game series at the Mount's E.T. Straw Family Stadium. The Blackbirds took game one (16-3) and game four (5-4) while the Mount swept the Saturday twinbill (4-0 and 5-4). Long Island has won six of the past nine meetings, but the Mount is 15-11 over the past 26 matchups between the two schools.
LAST YEAR'S SERIES: Last year, the teams split a four-game series at the Mount's E.T. Straw Family Stadium. The Blackbirds took game one (16-3) and game four (5-4) while the Mount swept the Saturday twinbill (4-0 and 5-4). In the opening game, Long Island scored 11 times in the top of the sixth to break open a 5-3 game to earn the win. The story was lead-off hitter Tyler Jones, who went 6-for-6 with three home runs, two doubles, four runs scored and five RBI in the game. Kent Worthington tossed a six-hit shutout to lead the Mount to a 4-0 win in the opening game of the Saturday doubleheader. In the second game, Andrew Caron's RBI single capped a Mount rally from a 4-1 sixth-inning deficit. In the final game, LIU scored two times in the ninth and withstood a Caron solo homer in the bottom of the inning to hold on for a 5-4 win.
CAREER NUMBERS VS. LIU: Seniors Shane
Eyler and Kyle Kane are each 11-for-31 (.355) at the plate in nine
career games against LIU...Eyler has three doubles, three home runs
and seven RBI...Andrew Caron was 6-for-15 (.400) against LIU last
year with two doubles, a home run and three RBI...Tommy Flynn is
hitting .333 (6-for-18) in six games against LIU...Michael Foster
(1-for-16, .063) and Josh Winter (3-for-22, .136) have struggled
against the Blackbirds.
EYLER REACHES 200 CAREER HITS: Senior Shane Eyler had a pair of hits in the Mount's 11-2 loss at Bucknell to reach the 200-hit plateau, becoming the second player in Mount history to reach the 200-hit mark. Josh Vittek (2005-08) holds the Mount record with 231 hits while Eyler now has 201.
GOING THE DISTANCE: Senior right-hander Max Brittenham has tossed six consecutive complete games, posting a 3-3 record with a 2.12 ERA over that span. Brittenham has struck out 22 batters while walking nine in 51.0 innings over the six games. He is the first Mount pitcher to have six consecutive complete games since Dustin Pease in 2004 while the six total complete games are the most by a Mount pitcher since Pease had six in the 2004 season. The Mount has not had a pitcher toss a complete game in seven consecutive starts since moving to NCAA Division I in 1989. The single-season record for complete games is nine set by Tim Sheehan in 1991. Brittenham's 2.25 ERA would set the Mount's single-season record since moving to NCAA Division I in 1989. The record is 2.37 set by Mike Matta in 2007.
BATS ARE SILENT: The Mountaineers have gone silent during the team's 13-game losing streak. Over the 13 games, the Mount is hitting .205 as a team while averaging 2.31 runs per game. The Mount has a slugging percentage of .302 with an on-base percentage of .266 during the losing streak. Shane Eyler (.341) is the only Mount player hitting over .300 over the past 13 games.
FLYNN ON THE BASEPATHS: Leadoff hitter Tommy Flynn leads the Mount and the Northeast Conference with 13 stolen bases. Flynn, who is fourth all-time at the Mount with 34 career steals, is five steals shy of matching the school's single-season record of 18 set by Matt Rueckert in both 1991 and 1992. Wayne Crowley (1997-00) holds the career record with 39 steals.
CAREER NUMBERS: The Mount has several players among the all-time career leaders...Shane Eyler has moved into second place all-time in career games played (181) and hits (201)...He is also 12th in batting (.320), second in at bats (628), tied for third in runs scored (114), tied for 10th in doubles (30), fourth in home runs (25), fourth in RBI (110), second in total bases (306), and seventh in steals (20)...Kyle Kane is fourth in games played (175), fourth in at bats (585), seventh in runs scored (102), fifth in hits (185), tied for 10th in doubles (30), tied for 14th in home runs (12), tied for eighth in RBI (96), tied for sixth in total bases (255), and tied for 11th in walks (11)...Andrew Caron is second in on-base percentage (.438) and ninth in slugging (.506)...Tommy Flynn is tied for 13th in runs (88), tied for 14th in doubles (29) and fourth in steals (34)...On the mound, Max Brittenham is eighth in ERA (4.86), tied for third in wins (12), tied for ninth in appearances (57), fifth in starts (33) and complete games (8), third in innings pitched (248.1) and fourth in strikeouts (165).
HELMAN NAMED NEC PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Zach Helman was named the Northeast Conference's Player of the Week on March 21. Helman hit .632 in helping the Mount to a 4-2 record last week. The senior third baseman was 8-for-12 (.667) at the plate in the Mount's four-game series at Wagner. He was 4-for-4 in the Mount's 11-4 win in the third game against the Seahawks. Helman was 4-for-7 in the Mount's doubleheader sweep of UMES earlier in the week.
PRESEASON PICKS: The Mount was tabbed to finish in sixth place in the annual Northeast Conference Preseason Coaches Poll. Central Connecticut State was picked to finish first, followed by Monmouth, Bryant, Wagner, Sacred Heart and the Mount.
UP NEXT: Mount St. Mary's hosts UMES for two games on Thursday, May 5, before heading to Duke for a twinbill on May 8.