Cowboys Pay Tuesday Visit To Turchin

The Green Wave are coming off a season-opening sweep of Southeast Missouri State that saw Tulane roll in the opener, 9-0 on Friday, before taking both halves of a Saturday doubleheader, 6-3 and 9-3. Tuesday's game will be aired live on the flagship of Tulane baseball, WRBH 88.3 FM

The No. 1 ranked Tulane University baseball team will look to remain perfect in 2005 when the Green Wave play host to McNeese State Tuesday, Feb. 15, at 6:30 p.m. at Turchin Stadium.

The Green Wave are coming off a season-opening sweep of Southeast Missouri State that saw Tulane roll in the opener, 9-0 on Friday, before taking both halves of a Saturday doubleheader, 6-3 and 9-3. Tuesday's game will be aired live on the flagship of Tulane baseball, WRBH 88.3 FM.

Tulane enters Tuesday's showdown with the Cowboys hitting .300 as a team with a .556 slugging percentage courtesy of two doubles and seven home runs over the weekend. Sophomore Mark Hamilton paces the Green Wave in the triple-crown categories with a .625 batting average, three homers and seven RBI. Senior outfielder Matt Barket ranks second on the squad in batting average, hitting .462, and junior Micah Owings is right behind Hamilton with a pair of homers.

The Green Wave will send redshirt-sophomore Brandon Gomes to the hill on Tuesday for his first start since the 2003 season. Gomes appeared in one game last year before undergoing Tommy John elbow surgery and receiving a medical redshirt. As a true freshman in 2003, Gomes, started seven of the 18 games he appeared in, posted a 2-1 record and struck out 37 in 60.1 innings of work.

McNeese State University had a pretty good run in the three seasons - 1998, 1999 and 2000 - that former LSU catcher and assistant coach Mike Bianco was the Cowboys head coach. A cumulative won loss record of 100-71, with the Bianco mini-era topped off by a conference title and a NCAA regional bid in 2000. But Bianco left after the regional appearance in 2000 to take the head coaching job at Ole Miss.

Bianco was succeeded by Todd Butler, who was head coach from 2001 through 2003. Like Bianco, Butler left Rodeo City for an SEC job - a position as an assistant coach at Alabama, which was the job he had before taking the McNeese head coaching position - after leading the Cowboys to an NCCA regional bid after winning a Southland Conference tournament championship in 2003. Butler had accumulated a 90-83 record, going 31-30 in his final season as the Cowboy's skipper, although the Cowboys were two and out in the 2003 regional hosted by Rice.

McNeese stayed local and hired the present head coach, Cowboy alum Chad Clement. Only 30 years old , Clement led the Cowboys to a 26-31 record in his debut last season.

McNeese State (2-4) is looking to build on a two-game winning streak after taking the final two games of a weekend series vs. Troy University, 13-5 and 12-7, in a doubleheader Saturday in Lake Charles. The Cowboys are hitting .260 as a team with a .404 slugging percentage on the strength of 14 doubles, a pair of triples and four home runs.

Jacob Marceaux will be the Cowboy starter for Tuesday's game. Marceaux, the top prospect on the Cowboys roster, is 0-1 on the season with a 1.38 ERA in 13 innings after two starts. Marceaux, a Jennings native, has recorded 13 strikeouts and no walks thus far in 2005. As a sophomore in 2004, Marceaux posted a 4-6 record, 5.76 ERA, 43 strikeouts and 35 walks in 59.1 innings pitched.

Probable Cowboy Starting Lineup:
C - No. 8 Joe Hulett (Soph, Shreveport, LA)
1B - No. 28 Tyler Stutes (Jr. Breaux Bridge, LA)
2B - No. 1 Chad Carnahan (Sr, Lake Charles, LA) or
(No. 6) Beau Knowles (Fr, Lake Charles, LA)
3B - No. 11 Josh Fontenot (Sr, Lake Charles, LA) or
(N. 6) Beau Knowles (Fr, Lake Charles, LA)
SS - No. 2 Bryan Cartie (Fr, Meadows Place, TX)
LF - No. 5 Chris Fontenot (Jr, Slidell, LA) or
(20) Taylor Faul (Fr, Lake Charles, LA)
CF - No. 21 Charlie Kingrey (Soph, Kinder, LA)
RF - No. 15 Dustin Schroer (Sr, Surrey, B.C.) or
(13) James Thibodeaux (So, Lake Charles, LA)
DH - No. 27 Michael Thompson (Sr, Orange, TX)
P - No. 17 Jacob Marceaux (Jr, Jennings, LA)

HITTING STREAKS
- 3, Chad Carnahan
- 3, Charlie Kingrey
- 3, Joe Hulett
- 3, James Thibodeaux
- 2, Beau Knowles
- 2, Tyler Stutes

Tyler Stutes has played in only the last three games for the Cowboys but is batting .556 with five hits in nine trips to the plate. Stutes has also hit a home run and driven in two runs with a 1.000 slugging pct. and a .714 on-base percentage.

Michael Thompson is batting .429 with six hits in 14 at bats.

Following Tuesday's game against McNeese State, Tulane returns to action over the weekend when they take on Arizona State. Friday and Sunday's games are scheduled for Turchin Stadium at 6:30 and 1 p.m., respectively, while Saturday's ballgame will take place at Zephyr Field with first pitch slated for 2 p.m.

For ticket information, including the Green Wave's "Three At The ‘Z'" package – which includes tickets to Tulane's Zephyr Field games vs. ASU, Cal State Fullerton and LSU – contact the Tulane Athletics Ticket Office at 504-861-WAVE or log on to the internet at www.tulanegreenwave.com.


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