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Blue Raiders continue road swing with weekend series at Troy

MT looks to continue three-game SBC winning streak

March 28, 2013 · @MTAthletics

FIRST PITCH (all times Central)
Friday - 6 p.m.
Saturday - 6 p.m.
Sunday - 1 p.m.

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - The Middle Tennessee baseball team hits the road for a weekend series at Troy beginning Friday at Riddle-Pace Field. First pitch is slated for 6 p.m. Friday.

Troy currently leads the all-time series with the Blue Raiders 24-19. The two teams split their four matchups a year ago 2-2, with the Trojans taking the regular-season series, 2-1, in Troy. MT finished the season with an 8-5 victory over Troy in the conference tournament.

The Blue Raiders (16-11, 3-3 Sun Belt) are coming off a two game series with Memphis in which they split the series 1-1. Jordan Cooper pitched six innings of shutout baseball in game one to earn the win, giving up just three hits and fanning 10. Hank LaRue made his presence known in the lineup for game two when he went 4-for-4 at the plate and scored one run.

On the mound for the Blue Raiders in Friday's opener will be Hunter Adkins (4-2). Last Saturday, Adkins pitched seven innings while surrendering seven hits and five runs on his way to earning the win against Louisiana.

Johnathan Frebis (3-2) gets the nod for game two on Saturday after picking up the win in game two against Louisiana over the weekend. Frebis went six innings and gave up just two runs and struck out five en route to the victory. Opposing batters are hitting just .220 against Frebis for the year, lowest in the league.

Sunday's finale will see Zac Curtis (4-2) on the hill. Curtis picked up steam his last time out, going a career high 7.2 innings. He gave up just five hits, three runs and struck out nine. Curtis has settled into his role as the Sunday starter and was able to finish off the first ever sweep of Louisiana last weekend.

Shortstop Ryan Ford continues to be the steady bat at the plate and currently leads the Blue Raiders with a .345 (40-for-116) batting average while driving in 17 runs this season. Ford has crossed the plate 18 times and has a team-high nine doubles this year. He is 3-for-3 in stolen bases and managed to turn 19 double plays in the field.

Troy (16-7, 3-3 SBC) got off to a hot start in 2013, winning 11 of their first 14 games to begin the year. The Trojans are coming off an 11-2 victory over Auburn at home on Tuesday.

Troy will send the right hander Tanner Hicks (3-1) to the mound for game one. Hicks is second on the team with a 4.36 ERA and, with 33 innings under his belt this season, has pitched the most innings on the squad.

Will Starling (3-2) and Shane McCain (4-0) round out the weekend starters for the Trojans. McCain will put his perfect record on the line in Sunday's game and brings a 3.38 ERA into the matchup. McCain is tied for with team-high 34 strikeouts this season.

Third baseman Danny Collins has the hot bat for the Trojans, batting .412 (35-for-85) on the year with five home runs and 34 RBI. Tyler Vaughn is just behind with a .411 (39-for-95) average and has touched home 35 times this year.

All games this weekend can be heard online at GoBlueRaiders.com or WMTS 88.3 with Dick Palmer on the call.

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