ASHEVILLE, N.C. – The UNC Asheville baseball team is home this weekend when the Bulldogs play their first Big South Conference home series against #29 Campbell at Greenwood Field. Asheville and Campbell will play one game Friday at 3 p.m., followed by a double-header on Saturday at 11:30 a.m.
The teams were originally supposed to play on Sunday but inclement weather is expected in the Asheville area on that day.
The Bulldogs (8-13, 1-2 BSC) face a stern task against the Camels. Campbell is 18-3 on the season 2-1 in league play. CU has posted impressive non-conference wins over Duke and East Carolina to its credit.
“We’ve got a tough series ahead of us against Campbell,” commented Bulldog coach Tom Smith. “They have no holes in their line-up and can beat you in a lot of different ways. We’re going to have to play very good baseball to beat them. We’re capable and hopefully playing at home we can get the job done.”
Asheville comes into this weekend’s action on the heels of a frustrating 10-8 loss at USC Upstate Wednesday night. The Bulldogs led 7-1 before falling in the latter innings. Asheville opened league play last weekend at Longwood as the Dogs lost the first two games before bouncing back to win on Sunday, 11-1.
Campbell swept a mid-week series against Rider at home. The Camels won their first league series at Gardner-Webb on Sunday when they rallied from a 9-0 deficit to win 11-10.
Asheville is being led at the plate by senior catcher Ian Graham with a .355 average. Senior infielder Robert McIntosh is right behind him at .345. Sophomore Tommy Houmard tops the club in runs batted in with 13 and doubles with seven.
Billy Creighton has done a nice job out of the bullpen with a 2.08 ERA. The Bulldogs are scheduled to start Dean Roland on the mound on Friday. Roland (0-4, 6.07 ERA) leads Asheville in strikeouts (21) and innings pitched (29.2). Lucas Clarke (1-0, 2.65 ERA) and Corey Randall (1-1, 3.14 ERA) are scheduled to go on Saturday’s twin-bill.
UNC Asheville is 5-4 at home this season.
This is Campbell’s first game at Greenwood Field since the 2006 season when the Bulldogs swept a double-header. The Camels have won seven of the last nine meetings, all in Buies Creek over the last three seasons.
Asheville did not make an error last weekend in three games at Longwood.
Ian Graham brings a five-game hitting streak into this weekend’s action. He has reached base in 19 straight contests.
Kyle Towles has reached base in 21 straight games.
Asheville has four hitters hitting better than .300 in Ian Graham (.355), Robert McIntosh (.345), Kyle Towles (.333) and Justin Woods (.313).
The Bulldogs are 3-1 in one-run contests in 2013 and have won three straight.
This will be the first time Asheville has hosted Campbell in a Big South Conference series since the 1993 season.