Baseball to Close Out A-Sun at Mercer

May 18, 2005

ORLANDO - For the last time in school history, UCF will play its final Atlantic Sun conference series in baseball this week as the Golden Knights travel to Mercer to close out the 2005 regular season. The Golden Knights and Bears begin the series Thursday at 6 p.m. before playing a doubleheader Friday at noon. The final three games lead into the 2005 Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament, May 25-28 at Melching Field at Conrad Park in DeLand.

With two victories over Mercer, UCF will clinch the No. 2 seed for the A-Sun Tournament. Troy has already earned the No. 1 seed in the tournament after clinching the A-Sun regular season title over the weekend with a three-game sweep of Stetson.

The Golden Knights have not played at Mercer since 2001. The 2003 series at Claude Smith Field was cancelled due to poor playing conditions.

The Mercer series will not have live radio coverage, but ucfathletics.com will provide live gametracker stats for the three games. Following the games at Mercer, the UCF ISP Sports Network and 740-AM The Team will broadcast every postseason game in the Atlantic Sun Tournament.

UCF is scheduled to start Tim Bascom Thursday in the series opener. The sophomore right-hander from Dunedin leads the staff with a 9-2 record and 3.08 ERA. Bascom has 102 strikeouts in 99.1 innings of work - the ninth-highest strikeout total in single-season history at UCF.

Darren Newlin (8-3, 4.63) will pitch the first game of the doubleheader Friday at noon and the game three starter for UCF is still to be decided. Junior Mike Billek (4-2, 4.09) or redshirt junior Taylor Cobb (3-1, 5.65) could get the nod for Jay Bergman's Golden Knights.

Offensively, senior Dee Brown is just four hits and three RBI away from setting new career records at UCF in both categories. Brown has 286 career hits and 219 career RBI along with 23 career home runs. Brown recorded his fourth, multi-home run game of the season last Sunday in a 12-5 win over Georgia State.