May 21, 2012
SOUTHLAND CONFERENCE TOURNAMENT PREVIEWUTA Probable Starting PitchersWednesday: Lance Day (10-3, 2.91 ERA)Thurs-Sat: TBA
ARLINGTON, Texas -- UT Arlington (32-23) enters the double-elimination Southland Conference Tournament as the No. 4 seed after a 19-14 league season. The Mavericks will face No. 5 seed McNeese State in the first round on Wednesday at 9 a.m.
The Cowboys (24-28) swept UTA in Lake Charles, La., from May 17-19. The all-time series between the Mavericks and McNeese State is tied 60-60.
The Southland Conference Tourament runs through Saturday in San Marcos, Texas. The complete tournet bracket is available at southland.org.
UTA is 72nd in the latest NCAA Baseball RPI rankings.
ALL-SLC HONORS: Junior RF Preston Beck was named to the All-Southland Conference first team. Senior pitcher Lance Day and sophomore shortstop Ryan Walker earned second-team honors. Senior second baseman Michael Guerra and senior outfielder Preston Morrow were honorable mention.
Beck led the SLC in home runs (11) and RBI (60) during the regular season, while hitting .337. His .575 slugging percentage was also the best in the Southland Conference. On the school’s all-time single-season list, his RBI total is good for sixth and he’s tied for eighth in homers.
Day tied for the SLC lead in wins (10-3), led in innings (105.0) and sported a 2.91 ERA. He began the season in the bullpen before moving into the rotation and becoming the ace of the staff.
Walker topped the SLC in hits (81), tied for second in runs (53) and led the Mavericks in batting average (.358). The Arlington Martin product was a freshman All-American last season.
HOW UTA STACKS UP IN THE SLC (12 Teams):
Team Batting Average: .273 (6th)
Team Pitching: 3.68 ERA (4th)
Team Fielding Percentage: .968 (4th)
Home Runs: Beck, 11 (1st)
RBI: Beck, 60 (1st)
Hits: Walker, 81 (1st)
Runs: Walker, 48 (1st)
Doubles: Michael Guerra, 14 (7th)
Total Bases: Beck, 115 (3rd)
On Base Percentage: Beck, .443 (4th)
Slugging Percentage: Beck, .575 (1st)
TO BE THE BEST YOU HAVE TO PLAY THE BEST: As has been tradition under coach Darin Thomas, UTA featured a tough schedule with 10 games vs. tournament teams from last year. UTA beat No. 2 Texas A&M, No. 12 Texas, No. 16 Oklahoma, No. 21 Texas State, Baylor (unranked at the time), TCU and No. 21 Sam Houston (twice).
...AND BEAT THE BEST: In 2011, the Mavericks picked up six wins over nationally ranked teams and have now won 18 games versus top-25 teams during Darin Thomas’ five seasons. Last year’s victims included: TCU, Texas State (twice) and Wichita State (twice).
SENIORS MOVING ON: This is the final season for a distinguished group of 10 seniors: Philip Incaviglia, Adam Boydston, Michael Oberto, Lance Day, Jordan Vaughn, Michael Morales, Collin Reynolds, Adam Westbrook, Preston Morrow and Michael Guerra. All 10 are on track to graduate.
NEW SAVE RECORD IN SIGHT FOR BOYDSTON: Senior closer Adam Boydston leads the team with seven saves and tied the career record of 23 set by Mike Snapp (2001-04). Boydston came into the second tied for third on the all-time list with 16 and would set a new record with another save.
SHORTALL & BECK EARN SLC HITTING HONORS: Sophomore DH Matt Shortall was the first Southland Conference Hitter of the Week of the season. Junior RF Preston Beck was the SLC Hitter of the Week on March 5 and again on May 20.
MORE HONORS FOR BECK AND WALKER: College Sports Madness named Preston Beck the Madness Baseball Southland Player of the Week on April 23. Walker won the same award on May 8.
PROBABLE STARTING LINEUP BRIEFS
Jake Pinchback (CF) - Batting .265 in 20 starts with 18 runs and 22 hits.
Ryan Walker (SS) - Team-highs in average (.358), runs (48) and hits (81). Started all 55 games.
Preston Beck (RF) - Batting .337 with SLC-high 11 HRs, SLC-high 60 RBI and 67 hits.
Michael Guerra (2B) - Started 51 of 55 games, is hitting .283 and has 14 doubles.
Preston Morrow (LF) - Has played in 40 games and is hitting .315 with 40 hits
Matt Shortall (DH) - Hitting .256 with four home runs and 24 RBI.
Jordan Vaughn (1B) - Started 53 games and is batting .274 with 55 hits and 27 RBI.
Greg McCall (C) - Started 44 games, has scored 17 runs, walked 19 times and has 36 assists.
Travis Sibley (3B) - Started 11 games, hitting .341 and has 29 assists.