April 8, 2011


Cavaliers meet Yellow Jackets in Atlanta for key ACC set


There are many key series in conferences around the country this weekend, but the hottest will be in Hot-lanta.


Two of the top teams in the nations tangle as No. 2 Virginia visits No. 12 Georgia Tech in a huge ACC series. The Cavaliers (11-1, 29-2) and Yellow Jackets (11-1, 23-7) are tied for the top spot in the Coastal Division and both teams are in the Top 10 in RPI (according to boydsworld.com). The key matchup will be the arms of Virginia against the young bats of Tech. The Cavs have lowered their team ERA to 1.93. In 284 innings, UVa has allowed 199 hits and 64 walks with 333 strikeouts. The Cavaliers are hitting .300, while opponents are hitting .200. The Yellow Jackets are batting .328 with 18 homers in 30 games. Georgia Tech has some strong arms as well, with a team ERA of 2.21.


The top series on the Left Coast could decide the Big West as No. 13 Cal State Fullerton (3-0, 21-8) hosts UC Irvine (3-0, 19-6). The Titans have been on fire lately, winning nine straight and 13 of 14. The Anteaters have won five in a row after being swept at Gonzaga.


Another important ACC series has No. 10 North Carolina (10-2, 29-2) visiting No. 8 Florida State (8-4, 22-7). The Tar Heels are one game behind Virginia and Georgia Tech in the Coastal Division, while the Seminoles hold a three-game lead in the Atlantic Division. Both teams have hopes to be a national seed in the NCAA Tournament, as UNC is third in RPI and FSU is ninth.


In the SEC, No. 1 Vanderbilt (7-2, 27-3) hosts Western Division leader Alabama (7-2, 21-10) and No. 18 LSU (3-6, 21-8) travels to Arkansas (3-6, 20-8). Also in the Southeast, Mississippi Valley State (8-3, 12-17) heads to Alcorn State (8-3, 10-18) in a battle of East Division leaders in the SWAC. In the Sun Belt, first-place Troy (8-1, 23-5) entertains FIU (4-5, 19-13) and Western Kentucky (6-3, 18-11) hosts Louisiana-Lafayette (6-3, 17-11). The top two teams in the Atlantic Sun meet as Stetson (9-3, 22-7) welcomes Kennesaw State (8-3, 19-12).


In the West, No. 5 Arizona State (5-1, 22-6) goes to No. 20 Oregon State (2-1, 21-7) in the top Pac-10 series. No. 16 California (5-1, 19-7) heads to Arizona (2-4, 20-10) in another key Pac-10 set. Gonzaga (0-0, 16-9) goes to preseason favorite San Diego (0-0, 7-19) to kick off West Coast Conference play. To start WAC action, No. 11 Fresno State (0-0, 20-3) travels to San Jose State (0-0, 19-9).


In the Northeast, Maine (0-0, 9-16) goes to Stony Brook (0-0, 16-7) to start America East play. The teams tied for first in the NEC battle as Monmouth (8-4, 13-12) invades Quinnipiac (8-4, 12-11). In the CAA, Georgia State (5-4, 23-8) visits first-place James Madison (10-5, 21-9). In the MAAC, Rider (5-1, 16-10) heads to Marist (4-2, 21-6). In the Patriot League, the baseball edition of Army (4-0, 11-14) vs. Navy (3-1, 18-12-1) takes place in West Point.


In the Central region, division leaders in the MAC meet as Kent State (5-1, 17-10) hosts Eastern Michigan (5-1, 18-10). Michigan State (2-1, 17-7) hosts Minnesota (2-1, 10-9) in a key Big Ten series. No. 7 Texas (7-2, 22-7) travels to Baylor (4-5, 17-13) in the Big 12. In Conference USA, Rice (4-2, 21-12) heads to East Carolina (3-3, 21-8). Conference play begins in the MVC as Creighton (0-0, 20-6) goes to Illinois State (0-0, 20-7).


Enjoy the games this weekend!

(photo courtesy of Georgia Tech Media Relations Office)