February 21, 2017123456789RHE
Win: Drew Korzybski (1-1) 6.032112
Loss: CONOR BOWERS (0-1) 4.2129930
Christian Bailey (ETSU) 413100
Hunter Parker (ETSU) 413100
February 22, 2017123456789101112RHE
Win: Connor Bartow (1-0) 1.000001
Loss: AUSTIN SHERRY (0-1) 1.132200
Hunter Parker (ETSU) 635100
Bucs entertain Oakland University in mid-week clash
Aaron Maher making a sliding catch in the opening series at Thomas Stadium versus Central Michigan.
Bucs entertain Oakland University in mid-week clash
Monday, February 20, 2017

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Feb. 20, 2017) – After winning its fourth season opening series in the last five years, the ETSU baseball team looks to build on that momentum as the Bucs welcome Oakland University to Johnson City for a two-game series starting on Feb. 21 at Thomas Stadium.

Series Information

This is the first-ever meeting between the two programs. ETSU has scheduled three consecutive opponents from the state of Michigan for the 2017 season and is already 2-1 against such opponents after defeating Central Michigan this past weekend.

Both games are scheduled for 3 p.m. at Thomas Stadium. Tuesday’s game will be streamed live on the Buccaneer Sports Network Live YouTube page, which can be found here. Live stats for both games can be found on the right of this page. Parker Schwartz will handle the play-by-play duties Tuesday.

Probable Starters

Tuesday – RHP Drew Korzybski (Knoxville, Tenn.) vs. RHP Conor Bowers     

Wednesday – TBA vs. RHP Aaron Dehn

About the Bucs

In a back-and-forth affair in the rubber match with Central Michigan, junior Christian Bailey (Kingsport, Tenn.) delivered the game-winning hit in the tenth inning en route to lifting the Blue and Gold to a 7-6 series clinching win. Sunday’s game saw four lead changes and four ties in the extra-inning game. The Bucs have won or split their last five season opening series, which dates back to the 2013 season when ETSU won the Atlantic Sun Championship.

ETSU is fresh off a series win and a walk-off hit by Bailey in extra innings. Leading the offensive surge was recently named Southern Conference player of the week, Chris Cook (Kingsport, Tenn.). The red-shirt junior leads the team in many offensive categories this season including: batting average (.769), runs (9), hits (10), doubles (2), home runs (2), total bases (18), slugging percentage (1.385), on-base percentage (.800) and stolen bases (2).

Joining Cook were five other teammates who hit over .300 in the series this past weekend. Just behind Cook was Aaron Maher (Brentwood, Tenn.) who recorded seven hits with a pair being doubles. He finished the weekend with a .467 batting average and three runs scored. Blake Rowlett (Clarksville, Tenn.) currently leads the team in RBIs as he brought home six runs including a two-RBI single on Sunday and a two-run home run on Saturday.

As a team, ETSU came out firing as it finished the series with a .373 batting average and 41 total hits including 12 for extra bases.

On the mound, the Bucs got solid appearances by four different hurlers. Opening day starter Ryan Simpler (Lewes, Del.) went five innings as he scattered six hits and allowed one earned run. Simpler led the pitching staff over the weekend with five strikeouts. Peyton Taylor (Kingsport, Tenn.) appeared in all three games and totaled 4.1 innings of work out of the Buccaneer bullpen. He surrendered just three hits and limited opponents to a .214 batting average while striking out three and walking none. Griffin Krieg (Nashville, Tenn.) also made two relief appearances as he totaled 5.2 innings while striking out three batters and holding the Chippewas to a .200 batting average. Saturday starter Jamin McCann (Kingsport, Tenn.) pitched six innings while striking out four and limiting opponents to a .250 batting average.  

Previewing Oakland

Oakland started its 2017 season going 1-2 at Lipscomb this past weekend in Nashville. The Golden Grizzlies were able to sneak out the series final on Sunday as they totaled 16 runs off 15 hits in a five-run victory over the Bisons. Leading the offensive surge for Oakland this past weekend was senior Zach Sterry. He recorded five hits including a pair of home runs and a double. He currently leads the team with five RBIs and five total hits including 12 total bases. Against Lipscomb, Oakland rallied for a .260 batting average and nine extra base hits. Seven of the 11 batters recorded a double against the Bisons.

Pitching-wise, the Oakland staff was tough as they limited the Lipscomb hitters to a .229 batting average. All three starters for the Golden Grizzlies recorded at least five strikeouts with all going at least five innings. Leading the surge was Jake Lee - who went six innings with eight strikeouts and no walks on opening day. Oakland used the bullpen for eight innings in the series, but Jared Burkert was the most dominant as he appeared in two games while tossing 2.1 innings and striking out five without allowing a run.

After posting a 23-27 record in 2016, Oakland lost two key players: Mike Brosseau and Ian Yetsko. Brosseau was drafted by the Tampa Bay Ray where he was sent to the Gulf Coast League. He played in 35 games last year while recording a .319 batting average in the minors. Yetsko played in over 170 games in his career for Oakland. He is ranked top-10 in program history in total at-bats and doubles, and in 2015, Yetsko was ranked 20th in the NCAA in doubles as he earned All-Horizon Conference status.

ETSU baseball is offering the businessperson special on Tuesday at Thomas Stadium. Fans are encouraged to join the Bucs for a day at the field where they can network outside of the office with other professionals in the area. If you leave your business card at the ticket window, tickets will be half priced. For ticket information, click here.

ETSU fans wanting to receive Buccaneer news, score updates, in-game promotions and much more sent to their mobile device can do so by signing up for “Buc Updates.” Click here to sign up today!

For more information on Buccaneer baseball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the baseball page.