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APSU Baseball travels to Lipscomb, Murray State for two mid week games

 

Austin Peay at Lipscomb

Tuesday, April 10th, 2018 | 6:00pm CT
Nashville, TN | Dugan Field

APSU BaseballClarksville, TN – Austin Peay’s baseball team closes out its six-game road trip with a pair of midweek outings. The Governors first return to Nashville for a 6:00pm, Tuesday nonconference contest against Lipscomb at Dugan Field. Austin Peay then meets Murray State in a 6:00pm, Wednesday at Reagan Field in Murray, Kentucky.

Austin Peay Baseball travels to Lipscomb on Tuesday then turns around and plays at Murray State on Wedensday. (APSU Sports Information)

Austin Peay Baseball travels to Lipscomb on Tuesday then turns around and plays at Murray State on Wedensday. (APSU Sports Information)

The Governors stand 2-2 on the road trip to date after winning its three-game Ohio Valley Conference series at Belmont last weekend. Austin Peay enters this week’s action seeking to turn around its fortunes in midweek outings where it has one win this season.

Lipscomb closes out a seven-game homestand with Tuesday’s contest. The Bisons are 3-3 during the stand after dropping an Atlantic Sun Conference set to Jacksonville, 2-1, over the weekend. Lipscomb is 1-4 in midweek outings this season, but the win came against nationally-ranked Vanderbilt, March 27th.

Murray State opens a four-game homestand with Wednesday’s action against the Govs. The Racers bring a two-game win streak into the outing after defeating Evansville, Wednesday, and Harris Stowe State College, Friday. Murray State is 4-4 in midweek outings, including last week’s win against the Purple Aces.

First Hacks

Austin Peay is ranked No. 75 in the NCAA’s April 9th RPI rankings. The Govs have recorded six or more walks 14 times this season and they rank 20th nationally with 171 base on balls (5.34 per game). Austin Peay also is ranked among the nation’s Top 50 in doubles per game (2.22, 18th) and scoring (6.8 runs per game, 43rd) entering the week.

Second baseman Garrett Giovannelli currently has a 35-game reached base safely streak – the longest in the OVC this season and fourth longest in program history; he is batting .400 (28-70) since moving into the leadoff spot, March 16th (15 games). Shortstop Garrett Kueber has 19 hits (.442 BA) and 13 RBI in his last 11 games, opening with back-to-back four-hit outings on March 18th and 20th.

Third baseman Malcolm Tipler saw his hit streak end at 14 games, Saturday at Belmont, but has reached base safely in his last 16 games and he owns a .432 on-base percentage during that streak. First baseman Parker Phillips did not start in three consecutive  games (April 4-7) for precautionary reasons but has bumped his batting average 30 points since March 21 (nine games).

First baseman John McDonald has started each of the last four games, including three starts at first base for Phillips, and is batting .285 (4-for-14) with four RBI in those starts. Center fielder Imani Willis has two grand slams this season (three home runs total).

Outfielder Kyle Wilson has started each of the Govs last 14 games, including 11 consecutive games in the outfield; he has six hits in his last six games, including a trio of doubles. Outfielder Nick Walker missed five games and did not start another four, March 16-30, due to a lower-body injury but returned to the starting lineup in the Southeast Missouri finale, March 31st, and  went 5-for-11 (.455) with four RBI in the Belmont series.

Catcher David Martinez‘ has reached base safely in seven of his last nine games played, including his first home run as a Governor in the Tennessee Tech series finale, March 25th. Catcher Alex Sala made his season’s first start March 6th at Ole Miss and since then is batting .261 with two home runs in 16 appearances (12 starts).

The 2018 Govs offense is a collectively young group with only 15 years of Division I experience between the 20 available position players entering the season.

Since the start of OVC play 16 different Govs hitters have started a game and only third baseman Malcolm Tipler has started each of the 19 games since the March 9 OVC opener (only three have played all 19 games).

Toeing the Rubber

Left-hander Harley Gollert will get the nod for Tuesday’s start at Lipscomb. It will be his third start this season and first since March 21st at Kansas State. He did not allow a run over 2.1 innings in Manhattan, a Govs eventually won 4-2. Austin Peay has not named a probable starter for Wednesday’s contest.

Govs pitchers have 248 strikeouts in 279 innings (8.00 K/9) this season. Austin Peay pitchers amassed a record-tying 466 strikeouts (8.07 K/9) last season.

On Deck

Austin Peay returns home for a three-game Ohio Valley Conference series when it hosts Eastern Kentucky, Friday-Sunday, at Raymond C. Hand Park. The Governors enter the weekend fifth in the OVC standings with the Colonels are one-half game ahead of them.


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