Two Trips South and Another Competitive Slate Highlights the 2014 Wilmington University Baseball Schedule
Friday, January 10, 2014 - Newark, Del.
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Head Coach Brian August (far left) congratulates Josh Hampton after hitting the game-winning home run against SNHU to send the Wildcats to the 2013 NCAA Division II East Region Tournament Championship. Copyright 2013; Wilmington University. All rights reserved.
The Wildcats have won each of the past three CACC Tournament Championships, including the Regular Season Championship last year. Photo credit: Ellen O'Brien, CACC
The Wilmington University baseball team will look to take it one game farther into the 2014 season, reaching the NCAA Division II East Region Tournament Championship game last year, and it starts February 21 as head coach Brian August announces this campaign’s schedule.
After winning an NCAA era program record 43 games last season, the Wildcats fell in the NCAA Division II East Region Tournament Championship game against Franklin Pierce, once game away from reaching the NCAA Division II World Series for the first time in program history.
“We try to play one of the toughest Division II schedules we can so our guys are ready for playoffs,” August, who is entering his 10th season at the helm of the Wildcats, said.
A new season and a new goal begin the weekend of February 21-23 at a neutral site field in Petersburg, Va., against Mercyhurst, Mansfield, and Saint Rose.
The Wildcats debut at home the following the weekend, playing a four-game set against Indiana (Pa.) on March 1-2 at Wilson Field, playing a doubleheader each day. That gives the Wildcats seven regular season games before heading south for its annual Florida Trip.
In Florida, the team will play Southern New Hampshire (a team the Wildcats defeated to reach the NCAA Division II East Region Tournament Championship game), NAIA foe St. Thomas (Fla.), Southern Connecticut State, Molloy, and Adelphi.
“We basically have two spring trips this year with our opening weekend to Virginia and then down to Florida,” August continued. “That gives us three whole weeks to get going into conference play and help us gauge where we are and who our main guys will be.”
Winners of the past three Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference Tournaments and the reigning CACC Regular Season Champions, the Wildcats begin their conference slate against Chestnut Hill on March 13 on the road. Those two teams faced off in the CACC Tournament Championship match last year at Wilson Field.
Throughout the season, Wilmington will also head to Concordia, Caldwell, Nyack, Felician, and Bloomsfield during the regular season inside the CACC.
The team’s first home CACC contest will be a doubleheader against Philadelphia on March 22. The Wildcats will also host Chestnut Hill, Post, USciences, and Dominican to round out the CACC portion of the 2014 campaign.
The 2014 nonconference schedule features new faces from the past couple years, as well as regular stiff competition against neighboring Atlantic Region teams.
New to the schedule from last year are home games against Pace, Queens (N.Y.), and Bridgeport, while they also take to the road for a contest against Queens (N.Y.).
August will once again return to his alma mater to face in-state and NCAA Division I foe University of Delaware on March 19 at the refurbished and all turf Bob Hannah Stadium.
The Wildcats also square off against familiar PSAC foes for six games throughout the year. The team will welcome West Chester, Shippensburg, Kutztown, and Millersville to New Castle while also visiting Shippensburg and Kutztown in a home-and-home series.
“We play a lot of tough teams from the PSAC, NE-10, and ECC, throughout the year and go to Florida and play a really competitive schedule,” August continued. “The plan is that it helps us gear up for the CACC Tournament and hopefully gets us into the NCAA Division II East Region Tournament.”
Due to a scheduling conflict with the Wilmington Blue Rocks, the entire CACC Tournament will be hosted at Wilson Field in 2014. The Tournament will move to New Castle following the opening round games at the higher seed on May 3. Once at Wilson Field, the double-elimination format will start on May 8 with a champion being crowned on May 10.
The winner receives the CACC’s automatic qualification for the NCAA Division II East Region Tournament at a site to be determined.