ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFKnights.com) - The rivalry between UCF and USF renews on Friday with the opening of a three-game set at the UCF Baseball Complex. The opener has been moved up to noon due to the threat of inclement weather.
Saturday's contest is still set for noon and is a part of the all-day #UCFastival, which is rounded out by the Knights' football spring game at 7 p.m. at Bright House Networks Stadium. The finale on Sunday between the Knights and Bulls begins at 1 p.m.
UCF (18-17, 3-3 The American) has released its first two starters for the series in sophomore righty Cre Finfrock (3-2, 2.57 ERA, 57 K) and junior righty Robby Howell (6-0, 1.28 ERA, 35 K). The final starter for the Knights is to be determined.
USF (16-17, 2-4 The American) has countered with its rotation of Phoenix Sanders (3-2, 2.94 ERA, 55 K), Brandon Lawson (3-2, 1.87 ERA, 66 K) and Joe Cavallaro (4-0, 2.47 ERA, 53 K).
The all-time series between the two rival is just about square with USF holding a slight 62-60 advantage. The squads split the home-and-home series with each squad protecting its home field.
Fans can purchase a VIP Bundle for the #UCFastival for $150 that includes two general admission tickets to any UCF vs. USF baseball game, two VIP Hospitality Tent passes and one Citronaut Bobblehead.
Another way to receive a Citronaut Bobblehead is to pick up the $88 Baseball Bundle that features eight general admission tickets to be used at any game in April.
The Knights make a trip to Jacksonville on Tuesday to face North Florida at 6 p.m. UCF then returns home to host Tulane in a three-game set April 22-24.
@UCF_Baseball Trending Topics
? The Knights are paced by junior Ryan Crile with 42 hits and 10 stolen bases. Eli Putnam has a team-best .330 average. Kam Gellinger has added 12 doubles, which is first in the league and tied for 46th in country. #OffensiveLeaders
? #UCF boasts the highest fielding pct., in @American_BSB at .978 and has turned 39 double plays on the season, which includes four against FAU and ranks fourth in the country. #ToughUpTheMiddle
? Junior Austin Griffin paces The American with eight round trippers and 32 RBI, which ranks 36th and 63rd nationally, respectively. #BigGriff
? A perfect 6-0 mark has been posted by Saturday starter junior Robby Howell, who ranks eighth nationally in victories. He has posted a 1.28 ERA (18th nationally) with 32 strikeouts in 56.1 innings of work. #HowellsHeroics
? Sophomore Cre Finfrock is just 3-2, but has posted a quality start in six of his eighth outings. He has fanned 57 (ranks 43rd nationally) in 56.0 frames, while only allowing 16 earned runs. #Finfrocking
? In his second Sunday start, Juan Pimentel threw a complete-game and allowed just six hits and one run in a tough 1-0 loss to No. 24 Houston. The Miami, Fla., native also tied a season-high with eight strikeouts. #PimentelPhenomenal
? Junior Matt Diorio and freshman Matthew Mika made their returns to the lineup at Memphis after injuries sidelined them for a couple weeks. Both players delivered three base hits and drove in a pair of runs against the Tigers. #WelcomeBack
? #UCF has two pitchers among the top 50 nationally in appearances - junior lefty Harrison Hukari (T7 - 21) and righty Campbell Scholl (T42 - 18). #ReliefRoles
? The Knights are 162-91 (.635) under coach Rooney at Jay Bergman Field. #HomeSweetHome