May 7, 2010
Connecticut streaks to top spot
in Big East
By Brian Buckey
Special to CollegeBaseballInsider.com
lasted about a month, 33 days to be exact.
March 27 to April 28, Connecticut rolled to a school-record 22
consecutive wins, propelling the Huskies to a 35-9 record and
sole possession of first place in the Big East.
think we handled it really well," Head Coach Jim Penders
(right) said of
the streak. "We treated it as 22 one-game win streaks. We just
focused on the next game on the schedule. But we played at a
really high level for a month and that doesn't usually happen."
run saw a bit of everything. There were close games, including
three one-run games and two games decided in extra innings.
There were blowouts, including six games that were decided by 10
or more runs. Overall, though, the Huskies overwhelmed their
opponents, outscoring them by a total of 231-87.
was pretty cool," junior infielder Mike Nemeth (left) said. "I've never
been a part of something like that. It's something really
special to be in the midst of that."
Huskies, who were picked to finish third in the Big East in the
preseason coaches' poll, now sit alone atop the standings with
Louisville and Pittsburgh close behind. UConn is 14-3 in
conference while Louisville is 14-4 and Pittsburgh is 13-4.
nice to be the lead dog for a change and have people chasing
you," Penders said. "But we still have a lot of teams chasing
win streak might have come as a surprise to some after the
Huskies finished last season with a 36-24 overall record and a
14-13 mark in the Big East. This year's team returns only three
seniors from last year's squad, but is led by a strong sophomore
and junior class.
strength of our team talent-wise is in the sophomore and junior
class," Penders said. "The sophomores really push the juniors
and the juniors push the sophomores. I think the sophomores
really changed the culture of the weight room in the offseason.
We had a very competitive offseason and it led to a very
competitive early season."
an 11-3 loss to Louisville in the Big East finals last year, the
Huskies have their sights set this year on a Big East regular
season and conference title.
"Definitely to make it back to the Big East Championship Game,
if not win it, and then to win the regular season outright. That
was definitely the biggest team goal that I really thought we
could do with the talent that we have," Nemeth said.
split a doubleheader at Pittsburgh on May 1, recording their
second loss in three games. After such a long win streak, the
Huskies aren't accustomed to losing.
showed everybody that we wanted to win and we felt like we knew
how to win," junior pitcher Elliot Glynn (right) said. "When you lose
it's kind of a big deal and I think in the past it really wasn't
that way. If we lose, which we have last week, it wasn't a good
feeling. Everybody was kind of down. It felt weird and that's a
good thing. We have a team that doesn't want to lose and you
can't ask for anything else."
(UConn took two of three from Cincinnati this
past weekend to improve to 37-10 overall and 16-4 in the Big
East, just ahead of Louisville at 16-5 and Pittsburgh at 15-5).
(photos courtesy of UConn Media