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by: Stetson University
Hatters Start Busy Week Tuesday at Bethune-Cookman
Courtesy: Stetson University  
Release:  02/24/2014
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First Pitch
The Hatters make the short trip east to face county rival Bethune-Cookman. The Hatters enter the game fresh off a series win over Boston College, their first series victory over an ACC team since sweeping a mid-week series from North Carolina in 1982.
    Freshman Taylor Cockrell will be making his first career start on Tuesday. Cockrell has previously made four relief appearances.
    Stetson is seeking consecutive wins for the first time this season.
    This is the start of a busy week for Stetson. After Tuesday’s game with Bethune-Cookman, the Hatters host South Florida on Wednesday before welcoming Iowa, Furman and Maine to Melching Field for this weekend’s Stetson Invitational, Feb. 28-March 2.
        
Stetson vs. Bethune-Cookman
Stetson and Bethune-Cookman are meeting for the 87th time on Tuesday. The Hatters own a 69-17 advantage in the series, including 22-11 in games played in Daytona Beach.
    Pete Dunn has been Stetson’s head coach for all of the games in the series, which began in 1981. Stetson has won six of the last 10 games, but the Wildcats won the last meeting, taking a 10-2 decision in Daytona Beach last April.

Scouting Bethune-Cookman
The Wildcats enter Tuesday’s contest with a 2-4 record after dropping two of three games at home to Florida Gulf Coast over the weekend.
    Under the guidance of third-year head coach Jason Beverlin, the Wildcats are currently led offensively by senior second baseman Matt Noble, who was 2-for-4 with a home run and three RBI in Sunday’s loss to FGCU. In six games, Noble is batting .313, but the Wildcats overall are hitting at a .218 clip.
    Pitching and defense has been the calling card through six games for Bethune, as the Wildcats have a 3.54 ERA and have made just four errors in six games.

Scouting Stetson
The 2014 Hatters return six everyday starters and their entire weekend rotation from last season. Highlighting the returnees are sophomore first baseman Patrick Mazeika, the 2013 Atlantic Sun Conference Freshman of the Year. A consensus Freshman All-America, Mazeika batted .382 with three home runs and 33 RBI last season. Also returning is senior left-handed pitcher Austin Perez, who posted a 7-2 record and 2.81 ERA on his way to second-team All A-Sun honors.
    The Hatters batted .263 and pitched to a 4.65 ERA last season on their way to a 26-31 overall record and a sixth-place finish in the Atlantic Sun. Stetson was 0-2 in the A-Sun Tournament.

Three Dot Data
This year marks the 15th season of Melching Field at Conrad Park. Opened in 1999, Melching Field has hosted over 500 Stetson games. The Hatters are 364-185 (.663) all-time at Melching Field, with an average attendance of 1,115 fans. Melching Field as been the host of 10 A-Sun Conference tournaments ... the Hatters face what head coach Pete Dunn calls the most challenging schedule in his 35 years as head coach... Stetson plays a total of 13 games against ACC and SEC foes this season (Ole Miss-3, Boston College-3, Florida State-3, South Carolina-2, Miami-1, NC State-1) ... Stetson also faces seven teams who participated in the 2013 NCAA Tournament (Ole Miss, South Carolina, NC State, Miami, FSU, Mercer, ETSU) ... sophomore first baseman Patrick Mazeika was recently named by Baseball America as the A-Sun’s number three prospect for the 2015 MLB Draft.

Hatters Picked Sixth, Mazeika Honored
Stetson’s baseball team was picked to finish sixth in the 2014 Atlantic Sun Conference race, and sophomore first baseman Patrick Mazeika was a unanimous selection to the Preseason All-Conference team in voting by A-Sun head coaches.
    The Hatters received a total of 60 points in the coaches poll, finishing just behind fifth place Kennesaw State (64). Stetson returns six seniors among its 19 letter winners from last season’s 26-31 squad.
    Defending regular-season champion Mercer received seven first place votes and 97 total points en route to being named as the preseason favorite. North Florida (86) received one first place vote, while Florida Gulf Coast (73) received two first place votes. Defending tournament champion East Tennessee (69) is fourth in the preseason poll, followed by Kennesaw State, Stetson, Lipscomb (34), USC Upstate (30), Jacksonville (27) and Northern Kentucky (10).
    Mazeika was one of three unanimous selections to the Preseason All-Conference team. The 2013 A-Sun Freshman of the Year, Mazeika batted .382 with three home runs and 33 RBI in 57 games. Mazeika was also a first-team all-conference selection and was a consensus Freshman All-America honoree.
    Mercer’s Chesny Young was named preseason player of the year, while Chad Sobotka of USC Upstate and Michael Massi of Mercer were named as pitcher and defensive player of the year, respectively.

Stetson Baseball History
A participant in Florida’s first intercollegiate baseball game in 1902 (W, 4-0 vs. Rollins), Stetson has been playing baseball since 1901. The Hatters are beginning their 97th season of competition, with the program being dormant during both World Wars.
    The Hatters have had plenty of success on the field, winning 1,913 total games and carrying a .571 winning percentage into the 2014 season.
    Stetson has participated in 17 NCAA Regionals, 2011 being the last time, and captured eight Atlantic Sun Conference championships (Stetson was an independent in baseball until 1987).
    Stetson has produced its share of Major League Baseball talent as well, boasting a pair of first round draft picks and nine Major Leaguers, including current Atlanta Braves third baseman Chris Johnson and Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Corey Kluber. Others to play in the big leagues include: Brian Bocock, Lenny DiNardo, Eric Knott, Kevin Nicholson, Wade Rowdon, Bill Swaggerty and George Tsamis.

Up Next
The Hatters return to Melching Field to host South Florida, 6:30 p.m., Wednesday.

Stetson Baseball




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