Baseball: WVU Opens Home Season

  • By Grant Dovey
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  • March 05, 2012 06:02 PM
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The WVU baseball team will open its 2012 home season with a doubleheader against Niagara on Tuesday, March 6, at Hawley Field. First pitch is schedule for 1 p.m.

Coach Greg Van Zant will start junior right-hander Danny Dierdorff (1-0) in game one. Making his first career start, Dierdorff has been a top reliever in 2012, pitching in three games and totaling 10.1 innings pitched. He has allowed just one run on five hits with a team-high 13 strikeouts. Dierdorff earned a save in his most recent appearance against Nebraska last weekend.

WVU's pitching staff has a cumulative 5.79 ERA through 10 games as the Mountaineers have surrendered 56 earned runs in 87 innings. Opponents are batting .294 against the WVU staff, which has recorded 70 strikeouts and 46 walks.

Redshirt sophomore left fielder Matt Frazer is WVU’s leading hitter through 10 games, batting .324 (11-for-34) with four doubles, one home run and six RBIs. Sophomore first baseman Ryan McBroom and freshman outfielder Bobby Boyd are hitting .308 and .304, respectively. McBroom has three doubles and five RBIs, while Boyd has five runs, one RBI and three stolen bases.

Junior shortstop John Polonius led the Mountaineers at the plate in three games last week, batting .444 (4-for-9) with four runs, two RBIs, two walks and two hit by pitches. Redshirt freshman Max Nogay went 3-for-7 in three starts with one run, one RBI and two walks. Breaking out of an early season slump, junior outfielder Brady Wilson finished the weekend batting .400 (6-for-15) with one run, one double, one home run and four RBIs.

The Purple Eagles come into the doubleheader with a 3-5 record and has played all of their games on the road thus far. Most recently, Niagara lost two of three at Bucknell last weekend.

NU is led at the plate by redshirt junior first baseman Ryan McCauley, who is hitting .455 with 13 runs, four doubles, five home runs and 11 RBIs. Senior infielder Eric Hink and senior outfielder Adam Wagner are each hitting .313 with eight runs and two doubles apiece.

Niagara is hitting .292 as a team with 28 extra-base hits and 12 stolen bases in eight games. Opponents are hitting .321 against NU with 33 extra-base hits.

WVU swept the last meeting between the teams in 2010 with 6-0 and 8-2 wins in a doubleheader at Hawley Field.