Homewood Suites Tournament
DATE: Feb. 14, Feb. 15 and Feb. 16
LOCATION: Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park, Charleston, S.C.
GAME TIMES: Noon (Friday), 11 a.m. (Saturday), 1 p.m. (Sunday)
MATCHUPS: WVU (33-26) vs. Louisville (51-14); WVU (33-26) vs. Delaware (33-22); WVU vs. The Citadel (35-25)
|Randy Mazey (4:00)
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - The West Virginia University baseball team will open the 2014 season this weekend with the Homewood Suites Tournament in Charleston, S.C.
The Mountaineers will meet No. 8 Louisville on Friday at noon, Delaware on Saturday at 11 a.m. and tournament host, The Citadel, on Sunday at 1 p.m.
Coach Randy Mazey, who is entering his second season, has tabbed junior left-hander Harrison Musgrave
as the Friday starter for the Mountaineers. Junior right-hander Sean Carley
will be the Mountaineers’ starter on Saturday, and junior left-hander John Means
is WVU’s Sunday starter.
"Harrison was the Big 12 Pitcher of the Year, the National Pitcher of the Week three times and deserves to grab the ball the first game of the season," Mazey says. "He's going to go out there and see what he can do."
Musgrave went 9-1 in 2013 with a 2.17 ERA and 81 strikeouts in 95.1 innings. Carley will be making his first appearance in two seasons after transferring from Air Force and undergoing Tommy John surgery. Means went 4-4 in 13 starts last season with a 3.34 ERA and 54 strikeouts in 72.2 innings.
"I thing the strength of our team is starting pitching," Mazey says. "With Harrison doing what he did last year, which going into this year doesn't mean anything, but at least he carries over some success at a high level. Sean Carley
and John Means
are throwing as good as they ever have. We couldn't have planned it better if we tried."
Key returnees from last year’s squad that went 33-26 overall and finished third in the Big 12 include senior first baseman Ryan McBroom
, junior second baseman Billy Fleming
, junior shortstop Taylor Munden
, senior left fielder Jacob Rice
and junior center fielder Bobby Boyd
. Rice led the Mountaineers with a .333 batting average, while McBroom was the team leader in home runs (12) and RBIs (48).
Louisville was picked unanimously to win the American Athletic Conference after going to the College World Series last season. The Cardinals will be starting left-hander Joe Filomeno, who made 14 relief appearances in 2013 and struck out 14 batters in 18.2 innings. They are led at the plate by outfielders Cole Sturgeon and Jeff Gardner. Sturgeon batted .339 with nine doubles, two triples, one home run and 33 RBIs last year, while Gardner batted .337 with 15 doubles, three triples, nine homers and 43 RBIs.
Delaware was picked to finish eighth in the Colonial Athletic Association and will throw right-hander Dan Gatto against the Mountaineers. Gatto made 18 appearances (seven starts) in 2013 with a record of 4-3, a 3.36 ERA and 47 strikeouts in 67.0 innings. Outfielder Joe Giacchino is the Blue Hens top returner after batting .307 with 12 doubles, two triples, two homers and 25 RBIs in 2013.
The Citadel was picked to finish second in the Southern Conference and will be throwing right-hander Austin Livingston, who went 4-2 with a 5.09 ERA in 2013. Livingston made 14 appearances, including eight starts, and struck out 27 in 35.1 innings. Top returners are outfielder Hughston Armstrong and first baseman Bo Thompson. Armstrong batted .379 with 11 doubles, two triples, one homer and 23 RBIs, while Thompson had a team-leading 14 home runs to go along with a .299 batting average.
A full recap and live stats of each game will be available at WVUsports.com.