CONWAY, S.C. -- It's finally here - it's opening day! Time to get back on the diamond!
The University of Richmond baseball team opens its 2017 slate taking on the defending national champions, #17 Coastal Carolina in the Caravelle Resort's Baseball at the Beach Tournament.
| 2017 SPIDER BASEBALL GAMEDAY CENTRAL - #11 COASTAL CAROLINA
|Who||Richmond Spiders (0-0) at #11 Coastal Carolina (0-0)|
|When||Friday, Feb. 17, 4 p.m.|
|Venue||Spring Brooks Stadium|
|TV||Watch Here (subscription fee)|
|Live Stats||Click Here|
|Game Notes||Richmond | Coastal Carolina|
FULL WEEKEND SCHEDULE
Friday, February 17 - vs. #11 Coastal Carolina (Spring Brooks Stadium, Conway, S.C), 4:00 p.m.
Saturday, February 18 - vs. North Carolina A&T (Pelicans Park, Myrtle Beach, S.C.), 11:00 a.m.
Sunday, February 19 - vs. St. John's [RV] (Pelicans Park, Myrtle Beach, S.C.), 11:00 a.m.
First up is defending National Champion, Coastal Carolina. This is the first time in the program's 100-plus year history that the Spiders will open with the reigning national champion. This is also the first time since 1998 that Richmond will play the defending national champion - last season the Spiders' game at Virginia was canceled because of weather.
SCOUTING THE CARAVELLE RESORT TOURNAMENT OPPONENTS
#11 Coastal Carolina
The Chanticleers are fresh off an unprecedented National Championship run. Coastal, who finished the season 55-18, returns nine position players, including All-American Andrew Beckwith (RHP), while adding eight freshmen to that squad.
North Carolina A&T
A season ago, the Aggies finisehd with an overal record of 13-41 with a 6-18 mark in MEAC play. NC A&T returns juniors Milton Rivera and Adan Ordonez who led the team last season hitting .349 and .322, respectively.
St. John's [RV]
This is the second season St. John's will face Richmond during opening weekend. The Spiders defeated the Red Storm last season in Wilmington, 14-10. St. John's returns eight starters from last years' team that went 28-26.
THE 2017 SLATE
In total, Richmond will face six NCAA Tournament teams in 2017. The Spiders also take on perennial powers Virginia, North Carolina, Texas, St. John's Maryland and Michigan State, who will be playing at Pitt Field as part of the Spider Invitational.
ONE FINAL TIME - THE SIXTH YEAR GUYS
Spider Voices: One Last Time
Richmond has two guys on the roster that were both granted a sixth-year of eligibility - Jonathan de Marte and Zach Grossfeld. Both started their careers in 2012 and were plagued by injury, both also will have a bachelor's and a Master's degree upon leaving the University this spring. Grossfeld and de Marte both played completely healthy last season, for the first time since joining the Spiders.
RETURNING TO THE LINEUP
The Spiders lost two pitchers at the start of last season in Robbie Baker and Brendan McGuigan. Baker went down a few weeks before the season started with an ACL injury, while McGuigan had Tommy John's surgery last spring after coming out of his first start of the year against UNCW.
Junior Keenan Bartlett added to his resume in the off season. He was named one of Perfect Game's top 100 juniors in the country, and was #90 in D1Baseball's Top 100 College Prospects.
In the Atlantic 10 Preseason Poll, the league coaches picked Richmond to finish fifth. Rhode Island was picked as the league favorite with VCU picked second. Saint Joseph's and Saint Louis were tied for third.