APSU Sports Information
Clarksville, TN – Austin Peay State University’s baseball team closes out its first road trip of the 2016 season when it travels to Arkansas State for a scheduled two-game midweek set, Tuesday-Wednesday, at Tomlinson Stadium in Jonesboro, Arkansas.
The Govs and Red Wolves start the series with a 6:30pm, Tuesday contest followed by a 3:00pm, Wednesday matchup.The Governors continue the road trip after an offensively-minded three-game set at Mercer last weekend.
Austin Peay produced 10 home runs in the three-game set. Those blasts accounted for 16 of the Govs 27 runs during the weekend. First baseman Dre Gleason had three of the home runs while five other Govs also had a home run.
Gleason has been Austin Peay’s most dangerous hitter in the opening three weeks, leading the team in batting average (.513), home runs (5) and RBI (21). He ranks among Division I’s leaders in all three categories: fourth in RBI, eighth in home runs and seventh in batting average.
Austin Peay’s pitching staff had a difficult weekend in Macon, Georgia, allowing 34 runs in the series and surrendering 20 extra-base hits (eight home runs). Friday starter Alex Robles was able to notch his second win of the campaign, holding Mercer to one run in his six innings of work.
Tuesday’s contest resumes a series that has seen bursts of actions since it started in 1995. The teams met annually from 1995-99 then the series took a hiatus until 2011-12. Austin Peay won the last meeting between the teams in 2012, a 10-9 extra-inning affair in Clarksville.
With its home surge at Mercer, Austin Peay is ranked third nationally in home runs (19), behind Mercer (22) and Pittsburgh (21) while it is tied with Missouri State, Morehead State and Illinois-Chicago.
Junior second baseman Garrett Copeland saw his reached-base safely streak end at 40 games with an 0-for-5 outing, Friday, at Mercer but went 3-for-7 in the series’ final 2 games. Junior first baseman Dre Gleason owns a 9-game hit streak that has seen him post 19 hits (.559 BA) and 20 RBI.
Junior third baseman Logan Gray did not reach base for the first time this season in Sunday’s finale at Mercer after posting a home run in each of the series’ first 2 games. Senior shortstop Clayton Smithson has seen 6 of his 11 base hits go for extra bases (.727 SLG), including 3 home runs.
After three weekends the Govs have platoon situations at four positions: catcher and all three outfield positions. Behind the plate Austin Peay has utilized three players: freshman Alex Sala, sophomore T.J. Marik and junior Ridge Smith.
Following Bredlau’s injury, Smith and senior Josh Wilson each gained a start in left field.
On the other side of the field senior Patrick Massoni and Chase Hamilton each made a start after the injury. Junior designated hitter Alex Robles led the Govs with 5 hits at Mercer (.455 BA), including a home run and 3 RBI.
For the first time since 1988 a new face is guiding the Governors with first-year head coach Travis Janssen coming to Austin Peay after four seasons at Division II Northeastern State (Oklahoma).
Toeing the Rubber
Sophomore right-hander Caleb Powell is scheduled to make his first start of 2016 at Arkansas State, Saturday.
It will be his fifth appearance this season and will come three days after he suffered a loss in relief at Mercer, Saturday.
Last season, Powell was the Govs midweek starter and compiled a 5-1 record in 14 appearances (10 starts) with 38 strikeouts in 53.1 innings pitched.
About the Arkansas State Red Wolves
Arkansas State (7-5) opened its home schedule last weekend by winning three of four from Milwaukee. The Red Wolves claimed the first three games by a combined 28-8 score before dropping the finale 9-2.
Senior outfielder Ty White is pacing the ASU offense with a .353 batting average and 11 RBI. The Red Wolves are one of the nation’s top sacrifice bunt squads, with 15 sacrifice hits to their credit in 2016, fourth-most among Division I teams. ASU also leads all Division I teams in times hit by pitch (32).
Freshman right-hander Peyton Culbertson is the Red Wolves scheduled starter. It will be his second start of 2016 after starting ASU’s February 28th contest against Omaha, allowing three runs in 5.2 innings in a no decision.
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