NGSC Sports

UMBC gets #4 seed and a trip to the Winston-Salem Regional

On Sunday, the UMBC Retrievers won their first ever America East Baseball Championship in Lowell, Ma. On Monday afternoon, they found out what that title and the automatic bid that goes with meant to them. When their name finally popped up on the television screen, they got their answer. A trip to Winston-Salem, North Carolina and a Friday date with the Wake Forest Deamon Deacons who are the number one seed and the host team out of the Atlantic Coast Conference

Maryland-Baltimore County will have their work cut out for them, at 23-23 the seeding for them is correct. They arrived at the regionals after going undefeated in Lowell going 3-0. They pitched well over the weekend giving up only three runs total in those games. While the bats were not always hot, they were warm enough scoring 14 runs in those games to get the job done.

Retrievers starting pitching was a key as starters Matt Chanin and Michael Austin were effective in keeping their team in games and going deep in those outings. Chanin threw a complete game in his win over Albany and Austin got to the sixth in his performance. The pitching staff registered an ERA of under one for the weekend, which will be key if they are to advance out of this regional.

Another key will be what they do swinging the bats. As a team, they have hit over .340 in the event. They have left 17 runners on base in those three games.  Their best inning in terms of runs produced were the first and third innings where they scored five runs in both frames. Getting a lead early and keeping it will be a must. The team was led by catcher and MVP of the championship Hunter Dolshun who hit over .500 for the weekend while doing a great job behind the plate calling games for his pitchers. Center fielder and leadoff hitter Andrew Casali did what guys at the top of the order are supposed to do, get on base and be a table setter. He too hit over .500 during the event, stole two bags, and hit one of two HR that UMBC hit on the weekend.

During the regular season, UMBC did not play games vs any team that was a power five school. Against the field of 64, their record is 1-3 with their lone win coming back on April 5 at home against Delaware 4-2.

Although this is their first America East title, it is not their first time in the tournament, they were in the field back in 2001 as the champs of the Northeast Conference. Overall, this will be their third time in the field.

There is no doubt that a lot of things will have to go right for Maryland-Baltimore County to get through this regional and advance. But isn’t that why you play the games? Just ask Stony Brook who back in 2012 made it all the way to Omaha and played in the College World Series. It can happen and starting Friday we will find out.

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