The men’s baseball team is looking to get back to their winning ways. This season their offense has been explosive, scoring 10 or more runs in five games so far this season.
The Bucs have been solid at home, winning eight out of 12 games, but still looking to improve on the road. Pitching, led by senior Blake Smith (Ninety Six, S.C. ), junior Ryan Simpler (Lewes, Del.) and senior Jamin McCann (Kingsport, Tenn.), has also been solid. The trio has a combined 5-3 record and 60 strikeouts.
Hunter Parker leads the team and the Southern Conference in batting average at .442.
As a team, the Bucs’ pitching is something they still need to improve on when they can’t get their offense going. They are currently third in the conference in runs allowed.
This is a team that has four players hitting a batting average of .400 or better, with all top 10 averages in the Southern Conference.
The Bucs as a team currently lead the conference in batting average of .335 while being among the middle of the conference in home runs (14). The offense does not depend on home runs to win games; however, they depend on a committee of hitters to make an impact.
If the Bucs can improve their pitching, they have a chance to win a lot of games when conference play rolls around.
As for the ETSU softball team, they have struggled as of late, losing seven straight games. The Bucs are still competing in all their games. During this losing streak, they have lost five games by fewer than one or two runs.
“We have to make more play on defensive to win these close games,” said head coach Brad Irwin. “We can’t make errors. Our offense has been good during this losing streak, it’s kept us in games. Right now errors is what we have to improve on.”
The Bucs next four games will be on March 17 and 18 at home. On Friday they play a doubleheader against Radford at 3 p.m. and 5 p.m.
On March 18, they have another doubleheader against Tennessee Tech at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Coach Irwin believes his Bucs are on track to get back to winning.
“I want to see us play a complete game right now,” said Irwin. “When games are close we make errors at crucial times.”
The Bucs current record is 8-14 on the season. They still have time to improve with conference play around the corner.
“Right now we are building towards conference, we want to make sure we are clicking in all directions when that time comes,” said Irwin.