Tuesday's contest begins at 6:35 p.m. CST and Wednesday's tilt at 2:00 p.m. CST. WMU then prepares to host Akron on Friday (April 4) at 3:00 p.m. in the Broncos' home opener at Hyames Field. The four-game Mid-American Conference series versus Akron continues with a Saturday (April 5) doubleheader, starting at 1:00 p.m., and a single contest on Sunday (April 6), beginning at 1:00 p.m. The Broncos are in a four-way tie for first place in the MAC West Division.
PITCHING ROTATION (subject to change)
Game #1 — Clark Sterley (0-2, 6.75 ERA, 6 Ks, 10.2 IP)
Game #2 — Shawn Morrison (0-2, 6.87 ERA, 12 Ks, 18.1 IP)
Game #1 — Pat Misch (2-1, 3.68 ERA, 28 Ks, 36.2 IP)
Game #2 — Brad Mumma (3-2, 4.24 ERA, 28 Ks, 34.0 IP)
Game #3 — Keith Perez (2-1, 3.24 ERA, 26 Ks, 25.0 IP)
Game #4 — Shawn Morrison
Western Michigan commenced its MAC campaign by taking three of four games from Marshall in Huntington, W. Va. (March 28-30). The
Broncos opened with a 9-4 win Friday, building a 7-0 cushion by the
sixth inning. WMU came back with a 12-5 victory in the first game
of a doubleheader Saturday behind Brad Mumma's complete game. Game
two lasted just four innings before being suspended because of
darkness. WMU led 6-3 and maintained that lead Sunday when the
contest was completed. Marshall captured the series finale 19-2,
striking for nine runs in the sixth and five more in the eighth.
The loss was WMU's largest of the season.
THE HUNT FOR 600
Western Michigan is three wins shy of becoming the first MAC school
to record 600 league victories. The Broncos are 597-389-2 in 56 MAC
seasons and are tied with Ohio for the most regular season league
titles (14). WMU will play in its 1,000th league game May 17
against Ball State.
HYAMES HOME OPENER
After playing 21 straight games on the road, Western Michigan opens
its home schedule Friday against Akron. The Broncos are embarking
on their 64th season at Hyames Field (capacity 4,000), which was
dedicated in 1939 and played host to the first two NCAA College
World Series in 1947 and 1948. The field is named after WMU's
second baseball coach, Judson Hyames, who compiled a .726 winning
percentage in 14 seasons at WMU. The Brown & Gold are scheduled to
play 17 games at Hyames, including a Centennial Celebration game
against Michigan on May 6.
Illinois (12-5) is coming off a four-game split with Indiana in a
Big Ten series held in Champaign. The Fighting Illini pitching
staff sports an outstanding 2.83 ERA, having allowed just eight
homers in 17 games. Senior RHP Josh Lane is unbeaten at 3-0 with a
2.35 ERA after four starts. Offensively, UI has nearly doubled the
run production of its opponents (115 to 59). One of the few
setbacks of the season for Illinois was a 12-10 loss to Northern
Akron (8-11, 3-1 MAC), tied for first in the MAC East, plays host
to Duquesne on Tuesday and Niagara Wednesday before making the trek
to Kalamazoo. Tim Berenyi's club took three of four games from
Buffalo and has now won seven of nine games after starting the year
1-8. Freshman OF Marcus Geiselman is off to a .392 start at the
plate. The Zips were projected to finish fourth in the MAC East
according to the coaches' preseason poll.
WMU lost twice at Illinois last year, giving up 30 runs over two
games. The Broncos are 7-15 lifetime versus the Fighting Illini.
WMU did not face Akron in 2002, but does own a 15-11 record all-time
against the Zips.
COACH FRED DECKER
Fred Decker is in his 28th season at Western Michigan, having
compiled a career record of 753-663-6. His 753 wins are the most in
WMU Athletics history while his 381 conference wins tops the
all-time list among MAC coaches. Decker led WMU to the 1989 MAC
Championship and West Division titles in 1982 and 1983. He was
inducted into WMU's Athletic Hall of Fame in 1993. A total of 85
former players have been drafted by MLB.
"I thought we played pretty good at Marshall, but it was a bad way
(19-2 loss) to end the series. The guys played hard and we were
able to get some timely hitting until Sunday. We really need to
find some right-handed hitting in key spots of the lineup to help us
Senior Chad Tarpley connected on his second career grand slam
Saturday, moving into a share of seventh place on the WMU career
home runs list (21) … LHP Brad Mumma tossed his third straight
complete game in WMU's 12-5 win at Marshall. His three wins leads
the staff … OF Tom Fabrizio went 7-for-13 against the Herd to
improve his team-leading average to .391 — a figure that ranks sixth
in the MAC … freshman LF Matt Bolton stands third among league
rookies in batting with a .333 average … WMU's pitching staff leads
the MAC with five complete games (the team had seven last year)
while the Broncos' .968 fielding percentage is tied for second best …
former Bronco Scott Demetral (1992-95) is in his third season with
the Akron coaching staff. Demetral's brother, Mike, is a second-year outfielder at WMU.
WMU Baseball Release
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