Preview: Baseball Makes Weekend Trip to UCF for Three-Game Series
Cougars and Knights set for series beginning Friday at 5:30 p.m. CT
April 25, 2013
HOUSTON – Gearing up for its first of two straight road series, University of Houston Baseball will travel to Orlando, Fla. to take on UCF in a three-game Conference USA series this weekend. The series is slated to begin Friday at 5:30 p.m. CT, continue Saturday at 3 p.m. CT and wrap up on Sunday at Noon CT.
All-Time: Houston and UCF have met 31 previous times. Series History: Houston owns the all-time series record at 20-11. Last Meeting: Houston and UCF last met in a three-game series at Cougar Field in 2012. UCF took all three.
Houston enters the weekend series with an overall record of 27-14 and a league mark of 7-5 to sit in third place. The Cougars are coming off a midweek loss at Texas and a weekend home loss to Rice – but will look to regroup as it is set to play the next six of seven games on the road.
QUICK HITS ON HOUSTON · Houston is hitting .266 with 199 RBI and 79 extra base hits. · Freshmen Justin Montemayor (.306), Kyle Survance (.299) and Josh Vidales (.283) lead the offensive charge in average. · Juniors Frankie Ratcliff and Caleb Barker each pace the team in RBI with 35 and 32, respectively, while Vidales leads the team with 31 runs scored as the leadoff hitter. · Ratcliff is currently third in the nation with six triples – as Houston ranks 12th as a team with 18 three-baggers. · Vidales (37) and Ratcliff (35) sit atop the league in walks and rank among the nation’s Top 15 with free bases – tallying a combined 72 thus far. · Vidales and Survance lead the league in stolen bases with 13 and 12, respectively, while junior Landon Appling has eight. · Houston pitching holds a 3.72 ERA with 27 wins and nine saves. · Senior Austin Pruitt leads the charge with a 7-3 record, three complete games, two shutouts, 76.1 innings and 69 strikeouts for a 2.24 ERA> · Junior Daniel Poncedeleon is 5-3 with a 4.50 ERA in 10 starts – tallying 48 strikeouts in 54.0 innings. · Freshman Jake Lemoine holds a 2.82 ERA and a 5-3 record in 13 appearances and seven starts, while sophomore Aaron Garza is 4-3 with a 3.17 ERA in nine midweek starts. · Seeing solid action out of the pen of late has been senior Matt Hernandez, who is 3-1 with a 4.03 ERA in 10 appearances – striking out 30 in 29.0 innings. · Junior Chase Wellbrock has a team-leading six saves in 15 appearances, while fellow junior Tyler Ford is 2-1 with one save in 14 relief appearances. The two have combined to strikeout of 44 in 49.1 innings. · The staff has fanned 282 hitters, while walking 116 – holding opposing hitters to a .268 average.
QUICK HITS ON UCF · UCF has won two straight – earning a series victory against Marshall last weekend. Prior to the weekend, the Knights had dropped three straight. · UCF is 22-19 and 8-7 in Conference USA play to sit in a tie for fourth place heading into the weekend series. · The Knights are hitting .258, led by Chris Taladay’s league-leading .364 avergae on 59 hits, while also tallying a team-best 35 RBI. · UCF leads the league in homeruns with 25 – slugging .381 as a team through 41 games. · The Knights have walked 165 times and struck out 290 times. · UCF pitching holds a 3.67 ERA, led by Ben Lively’s 1.09 ERA. Lively paces the team with a 6-3 record, 10 starts, 74.0 innings and 72 strikeouts. · Zac Favre is 2-1 with a 2.52 ERA with 23 appearances out of the pen. · The Knights’ staff has walked 144 hitters and struck out 281 – holding opposing batters to a .256 clip.
SERIES HISTORY · Houston and UCF will meet for the 32nd time in the history of the program on Friday. · The Cougars own the all-time series, 20-11, but have dropped the last three contests – all-coming in a weekend series (April 27-29) at Cougar Field in 2012. · Houston won the series on the road in Orlando in 2011 – taking two of three from the Knights. · Houston is 7-2 all-time in Orlando vs. UCF.
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UP NEXT Following the weekend series at UCF, Houston will return home to host Louisiana-Lafayette at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 30, at Cougar Field.