SFA Looks To Bounce Back Against ORU

Senior Mackenzie Handel and SFA will host ORU in a three-game series beginning Friday.

April 10, 2014

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Stephen F. Austin (15-17, 6-6 SLC) vs. Oral Roberts (16-16, 4-8 SLC)
Friday, April 11 (6:30 p.m.)
Saturday, April 12 (2:00 p.m.)
Sunday, April 13 (1:00 p.m.)
Jaycees Field - Nacogdoches, Texas 

Opening Pitch
• The Stephen F. Austin Lumberjack baseball team will close their five-game homestand at Jaycees Field, hosting Oral Roberts in a weekend series. SFA, looking to bounce back from being swept by New Mexico in the midweek, will try and snap its two-game losing streak in a 6:30 first pitch Friday against the Golden Eagles.

• SFA enters the week at 15-17 overall and 6-6 in Southland Conference play. In the last conference series for the `Jacks, SFA took two of three from Texas A&M - Corpus Christi (April 4-6) on the road to pick up its second consecutive league series. The `Jacks also took two of three against Central Arkansas (Mar. 28-30). ORU enters the weekend 16-16 overall and 4-8 in SLC play.

• SFA will have its fourth run through its weekend rotation with junior Cameron Gann on Friday, junior Dillon Mangham on Saturday and senior Kevin Bishop on Sunday. The three `Jack starters will see sophomore Guillermo Trujillo, senior Gavin Glanz and a pitcher later to be announced, across the three-game series.

Players of Note
• Heading into the week, senior Mackenzie Handel has enjoyed a steady season at the plate, leading both the team and Southland Conference in several offensive categories. Handel currently leads the league in slugging percentage (.627), homeruns (8), RBI (33) and total bases (74). The native of Chandler, Ariz., also leads the `Jacks in batting average (.356), runs (24), hits (42), walks (22) and on-base percentage (.452). Handel ranks in the third in the conference in walks and sixth in both batting average and on-base percentage. He ranks second on the team with eight doubles.

• Senior Ricardo Sanchez is coming off a hot weekend at the plate. Sanchez finished 9-for-15 (.600) across the three-games series at TAMUCC to pick up Southland Conference Hitter of the Week honors, the first of his career. Sanchez, a native of Houston, Texas, recorded multi-hit games in each contest to finish with a .600/.733/.647 split. He went 2-for-4 with two runs scored in the series opener and followed with a 3-for-5 performance with two RBI and a run scored in the second game. In the series conclusion, Sanchez went 4-for-6 with two doubles and scored the game-winning run with a two-out RBI single to left field in the top of the ninth. Sanchez went 2-for-10 across the New Mexico series.

• Senior Zach Marberry currently leads both the team and SLC with eight doubles. He currently boasts a .315/.528/.402 split. The native of Lufkin, Texas, finished 2-for-7 in the recent series with UNM, belting two homeruns in the Tuesday night game.

SCOUTING ORAL ROBERTS: ORU enters the week 16-16 overall and 4-8 in conference play. The Golden Eagles are coming off a pair of midweek victories, shutting out No. 26 Oklahoma, 2-0, on Tuesday, and handling Wichita State 9-4 on Wednesday. The ORU pitching staff didn't allow a run to Sooners in two games this season. OU entered the week as the No. 2 offense in the Big 12. In the last ten games, Anthony Sequeira and Tyler Boss have been giving the Golden Eagles opportunities on the base paths, hitting .367 and .333 respectively. Boss leads the team in hitting with a season average of .297 and has a team high eight doubles, a triple and a pair of home runs.

Friday's starting pitcher, Guillermo Trujillo (1-2) has anchored the ORU rotation this season. Trujillo has a 3.70 earned run average in eight starts, and has struck out 41 batters, ninth most in the Southland.

VS. THE OPPONENT: SFA is 3-4 all-time against the Golden Eagles, after sweeping the conference series between the two teams last season. The `Jacks, host ORU for the second time in the series history, are 3-0 all-time after last year's meeting at Jaycees Field. SFA was 3-1 against the Golden Eagles last season, falling 4-2 in Southland Conference Tournament opener for both teams.

The Last Time Out
• The `Jacks committed four errors for a third-straight game in a 6-3 loss to UNM on Wednesday afternoon at Jaycees Field. The loss completed the series sweep for the Lobos and evened the all-time series between the two team at 2-2.

• SFA will retake the road for its five games. Next week, the `Jacks will play at Arkansas on Tuesday, April 15, before heading to Abilene Christian (April 17-19) for a three-game series. SFA will then play at Dallas Baptist on April 22. The `Jacks will play their next game at home on April 25, in the first of a three-game series at Lamar.



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