CHARLESTON, S.C. – Charleston Southern will try to finish out its 2014 home schedule on a high note this weekend when the Buccaneers welcome South Division-leader Winthrop to CSU Ballpark for a Big South series. First pitch of Friday's opener is at 6 p.m.
Nine Buccaneer seniors make their final appearance at CSU Ballpark this weekend. It is a record-setting senior class that is trying to leave the Buccaneer program with its first winning season since 1996. To do so, the Bucs will likely have to take a series this weekend from a Winthrop team that has South Division title hopes.
The Buccaneers have won three-straight Big South Conference series and 5-of-6 in Big South Play, while Winthrop enters the weekend following an off weekend and a sweep of VMI in late April.
Charleston Southern (26-21, 8-12 Big South) vs. Winthrop (22-27, 12-9)
Friday, 6 p.m. – CSU Ballpark - VIDEO & LIVESTATS
LHP Tory Schroff (5-2, 3.24 ERA) vs. LHP Sam Kmiec (5-3, 2.61 ERA)
Saturday, 6 p.m. – CSU Ballpark
LHP Andrew Tomasovich (5-2, 4.60 ERA) vs. RHP Zach Sightler (2-4, 3.02 ERA)
Sunday, 2 p.m. – CSU Ballpark
RHP Levi Mauldin (4-2, 4.58 ERA) vs. TBA
All of this weekend's games will be streamed live on the Big South Network and live stats will be available via statbroadcast at csusports.com.
Seniors Alex Tomasovich, Tory Schroff, Matt Witt, Cody Austin, Zack Hagaman, Nick Berry, Levi Mauldin, Brian Welch, and Stephen Leopard will all make their final appearances at CSU Ballpark this weekend, where the Bucs have been at their best this season, going 17-12. The 17 home wins are the most by a CSU team against an all-Division I schedule.
Winning 9 of their last 10 games, the Buccaneers and this senior class has played itself into a position to potentially finish with the most Division I wins in school history (30 in 1996). More importantly, a strong finish to the regular season would put the Bucs into the Big South Championship after a slow start and make them one of the hottest teams in the Big South heading into the tournament.
The Bucs' seniors combined for nine hits and seven RBI on Tuesday night in a 12-7 win over The Citadel. Two senior weekend starters will take the ball for the final time at CSU Ballpark. LHP Tory Schroff (5-2) has won three-straight Big South starts and held Presbyterian to an earned run in 7.2 innings of work in a Friday win last week.
Tomasovich is the reigning Big South Player of the Week and has seen his average climb to .366 over the two weeks. He is also only a few swings away from moving becoming CSU's all-time leader in a couple of major categories. His 50 career doubles are tied for the most all-time and, with 242 career hits, he needs two to move into second on the all-time list. He has 71 hits this season, which ties a career high.
Junior Bobby Ison's 78 hits leads the Big South – Tomasovich is second with 71 – and is nearing his own CSU record. His 84 hits last season tied the CSU mark and with seven games and potentially a tournament, Ison appears to be headed toward having the CSU single-season hits record to himself.
Winthrop centerfielder T.T. Olesczuk leads the Eagles – and the Big South – with a .420 batting average. He has 6- hits in 39 games played, but the Eagles have struggled to score runs at time this season with a team .235 average. Friday night starter Sam Kmeic is 5-3 in 11 starts and has a 2.61 ERA, which is second on the team.