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Blue Raiders set to host UALR for weekend series

Bark in the Park slated for Saturday

April 4, 2013 · @MTAthletics

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - The Middle Tennessee baseball team is set to welcome UALR to Reese Smith Jr. Field this weekend for a three-game series beginning Friday. First pitch for Friday's contest is set for 6 p.m.

The Blue Raiders look to get back in the win column following a tough outing at No. 2 Vanderbilt on Tuesday night. Trent Miller went 2-for-4 at the plate and drove in a run for MT.

MT (16-15, 3-6 Sun Belt) hopes its weekend pitching can bring the Blue Raiders back to .500 in conference play.

The Blue Raiders currently lead the all-time series with the Trojans, 28-7. MT has a four game winning streak heading into this weekend's series, with the Blue Raiders' last loss to UALR coming in April of 2011 in Little Rock, Ark. This will make back-to-back series between the two team teams in Murfreesboro.

Hunter Adkins (4-2) heads to the mound for game one on Friday. Last time out, Adkins pitched 7.1 innings at Troy, surrendering just five hits and two earned runs while striking out seven, but was unable to come away with the win. He holds a 3.28 ERA and has struck out a team-best 39 this year.

Game two will see Johnathan Frebis (3-3) on the hill for the Blue Raiders. Frebis went five innings at Troy last weekend, giving up five hits and just one earned run. Frebis carries a 3.19 ERA into this matchup and opposing batters are hitting just .226 off him for the year.

Zac Curtis (4-3) makes his way to the mound for the Sunday finale. Curtis pitched 4.1 innings and gave up six hits and four earned runs last Sunday at Troy. Curtis's 32 strikeouts are good for second on the squad this year and he has a 5.70 ERA.

Centerfielder Ryan Stephens remains the hot bat at the plate for MT and his .327 (37-for-113) average this year is good for a team best. Stephens consistently finds ways to get on base, having reached in 23 of the last 25 contests.

UALR (14-14, 3-6 SBC) heads into the series on a four-game winning streak after sweeping ULM at home over the weekend. At one point this season, the Trojans had lost seven in a row before finding a way to right the ship and start their current streak.

The senior righthander Chance Cleveland (3-4) will start game one Friday and brings a 2.50 ERA into the contest. Cleveland has a team high 50.1 innings pitched this year and opposing batters are hitting just .212 against him.

Blake Huffman (3-1) and Ethan Schlechte (3-3) are set to round out the series rotation this weekend. Huffman brings a 2.68 ERA into Saturday and Schlechte carries a 5.20 ERA into the final game Sunday.
Infielder Austin Pfeiffer leads the Trojans at the plate with a .343 (25-for-102) average this year and Bryson Thionnet is the power in the lineup with five home runs this season.

SATURDAY, APRIL 6: Bark in the Park
Fans are welcomed to bring their dog to the game for a fun filled afternoon at the ball park. It is required that all dogs be kept on a leash while inside the ball park. There will be a designated area along the third base side of the stadium for owners and their dogs to view the game from. We ask that you stay inside that grass area and not come into the stands with your dog. Also as a courtesy to others please clean up after you dog.

SUNDAY, APRIL 7: Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Kid's Day at the Park
Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. annual Delta Week is April 7-13th. They are partnering with the MTSU baseball team for a day of fun-filled activities for the children of the Murfreesboro community. Beginning at 11:30 a.m. children can enjoy space walks, fire trucks, face painting, cotton candy, a field obstacle course, a chance to meet the players and more for FREE!

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