Marshall renews rivalry vs. WVU
CHARLESTON -- The first of three-game baseball series between Marshall and West Virginia is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday at Appalachian Power Park.
The Thundering Herd (8-10) is coming off a win Sunday over Central Michigan at Linda K. Epling Stadium in Beckley. The Chippewas of the Mid-American Conference won three of four in the series.
West Virginia (8-11) opened Big 12 Conference play last weekend, going 1-2 against Kansas State. The Mountaineers took the opener, 13-2, but the Wildcats won the next two, 6-5 and 4-3.
While their series history dates back to 1910, Marshall and West Virginia have met only once in the past 15 seasons. That was at Coastal Carolina's Bash at the Beach Tournament in 2008. The Mountaineers won, 5-3. The last in-state meeting between the two was 1998 and the Mountaineers outscored the Herd, 12-11, at Watt Powell Park in Charleston. In the 1910 contest, West Virginia won, 5-3.
West Virginia has won the last nine meetings between the two and leads the all-time series 38-21. The dates for the other two games in the series are April 2 in Morgantown and May 14 at Epling Park in Beckley.
The Mountaineers are batting .310 as a team, led by Jacob Rice (.413) and Bobby Boyd (.410), who account for the bulk of the WVU offense. The outfielders rank third and fourth in overall batting average in the Big 12 Conference. In four games last week, designated hitter Matt Frazier hit .444 with a double, triple, three home runs and eight runs batted in. In an 8-7 loss at Pitt on Tuesday, he went 4-for-5 with two homers and five RBI.
First-year West Virginia coach Randy Mazey has named left-hander Zach Bargeron (0-0, 5.06 ERA) as his starter. This will be Bargeron's third straight Tuesday start. He lasted just 1.1 innings against Pitt.
For Marshall, right-hander Aaron Blair (2-1, 3.57 ERA) gets the ball. He last worked March 10, allowing three hits over seven innings in the Herd's 9-0 win at Northern Kentucky. It was his longest outing of the season.
At the plate, Andrew Dundon leads the Marshall attack with a .356 average. He has seven multi-hit games and has struck out just eight times. The Herd's team batting average is .275.