BASEBALL WRAPS UP REGULAR SEASON WITH HOMESTAND AGAINST UT ARLINGTON
• The Sacramento State baseball team will conclude its 2013 regular season by hosting UT Arlington for a three-game series at John Smith Field. Due to the fact that it is the final weekend, the series will run Thursday through Saturday. The first two games will begin at 3 p.m. while the finale will have a 1 p.m. first pitch.
• Sacramento State enters the weekend with a 33-20 overall record and a 14-10 mark in WAC games. The team has a chance to finish as high as second in the league standings if it is able to take win the series against UTA and not have Texas State sweep Dallas Baptist.
• The Mavericks are currently in second at 15-9 in league games and are 27-25 overall. The team could would the WAC regular season title if it sweeps and CSU Bakersfield loses all three.
• The Hornets wrapped up an amazing run of nonleague games with a 3-1 win at Pacific on Tuesday night. In those midweek games, the team is 11-2 on the season. That victory also helped Sacramento State win its fourth of five and ninth of 11.
• An audio broadcast of the game will streamed for free via hornetsports.com with Kyle Madson and Brian Berger calling the action.
• Live stats for all games can be also viewed on hornetsports.com.
• This weekend will mark the first meetings between the two teams. Prior to this season, the Hornets had never faced Texas, Dallas Baptist, Texas State, UTSA or UT Arlington.
Below is a look at how Sacramento State stacks up against this weekend's opponent in overall statistics.
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A LOOK BACK AT THE SJSU SERIES
Sacramento State won its third consecutive series and fifth in its last six by taking two of three games against San Jose State.
The Hornets began the set with a 4-1 win on Friday. Starter Brennan Leitao continued his brilliance against WAC foes, throwing eight innings and allowing five hits and a run. Sacramento State scored two runs in the first and a run in the second to take control of the game.
Saturday, the Hornets squandered a late lead for the first time in over two months as SJSU rallied for an 8-6 victory. The Spartans scored three runs in the ninth off of closer Sutter McLoughlin to even the series.
Sacramento State won the rubber game on Sunday when David Del Grande scored from third on a wild pitch to claim a 3-2 victory.
A LOOK BACK AT THE PACIFIC GAME
Kyle Moses had three hits, including the second of back-to-back RBI doubles in the fifth inning to back Zach Morgan's strong start and help Sacramento State to a 3-1 win at Pacific on Tuesday night.
Morgan earned his sixth win of the season (6-2) after lasting 8.1 innings and allowing a run on eight hits with four walks and two strikeouts. Sutter McLoughlin entered with runners on first and second with one out and proceeded to strike out his first batter before getting a flyout for his 17th save.
The Hornets scored first with a run in the second inning on a sacrifice fly from Will Soto to center.
That score held until the fifth inning where Scotty Burcham began a two-out rally with a bunt single up the third base line. Dane Fujinaka doubled down the left filed line to score Burcham from first and Moses hit a nearly identical ball to plate Fujinaka.
A LOOK AHEAD
Sacramento State will play in the Western Athletic Conference Tournament in Grand Prairie, Texas. The team will play a minimum of three games in the tournament which will consist of eight teams. The tournament will have two four-team pools which will feature round robin play. The two pool winners will meet in Sunday's championship game.
SCOUTING THE MAVERICKS
UT Arlington took two of three from Texas State last weekend to remain in second place in the WAC. The Mavericks are led by designated hitter Matt Shortall who is hitting .368 with 18 doubles, two triples and five home runs. He's also driven in a team high 47 runs.
Brad Vachon is the team's leading pitcher with a 3.03 ERA and a 6-4 record. Six different pitchers have contributed to the team's nine saves, including three by Chad Nack.
The Maverick's program boasts several current Major Leaguers, including John Lackey, Hunter Pence and Ryan Roberts.
Prior to Saturday's game, Sacramento State will honor five Hornets who will be playing their final game at John Smith Field. The group is comprised of second baseman Andrew Ayers, infielder Greg Meyer and pitchers Zach Morgan, Brandon Creel and Tyler Hoelzen.
Ayers with the WAC Player of the Year in 2012 and has been a key contributor to the team winning 30-plus games each of the last two seasons.
Meyer has shown versatility and has primarily been used as a pinch hitter this season.
Creel and Hoelzen have been workhorses out of the bullpen combining for 53 appearances in 2013.
Morgan ranks third on the team with six wins mostly as a midweek starter. He pitched in 15 games with nine starts this year.
MOSES PARTS THE DEFENSE
Sophomore Kyle Moses has the hottest bat on the team, hitting .481 (13-for-27) since entering the lineup for the injured Rhys Hoskins seven games ago. During that stretch, Moses has hit safely in every game which ties his career long hitting streak.
The Tracy, Calif., native also has three multi-hit games, including a pair of three hit performances.
ROLLING THROUGH THE WAC
Sophomore Brennan Leitao continued his pitch to be the WAC Pitcher of the Year with another solid performance last Friday. In the win over San Jose State, Leitao threw 8.0 innings while allowing five hits and a run.
That effort raised his record in WAC games to 7-1 while his ERA dropped to 1.55. In conference games, opponents are hitting a mere .202 and he has a WHIP of 0.97.
The Irvine, Calif., native has been nearly as good all season as he is 8-2 with a 2.45 ERA.
JUST A BUMP IN THE ROAD
Freshman Sutter McLoughlin did not allow his blown save on Saturday to have a lasting effect on him. The closer returned to action on Tuesday at Pacific to record his 17th save of the season. McLoughlin entered with runners on first and second and one out. He struck out the first batter he faced before getting the next hitter to fly out to center.
The Rio Americano HS graduate now has an ERA of 2.48 in his 32.2 innings of work. He ranks third in Div. I this season, trailing only Austin Peay's Tyler Rogers (19) and Oregon's Jimmie Sherfy (18).
His next save will move him ahead of Michael Penbera for sole possession of second on the school career list. The career record of 26 was set by Mike Frame from 1987-89.
TWO DOWN, NONE TO GO
The tag team freshmen duo of Chris Lewis and Nathan Lukes have both broken the Sacramento State single season freshman record for hits.
Lewis leads the team with 71 hits as well as a .355 average in 53 games. Lewis is second on the team with a .313 average of 65 hits.
The previous Hornet freshman record was 62 set by Tim Wheeler in 2007. Wheeler went on to become a first round draft choice of the Colorado Rockies and is currently in Triple-A.