UCF Closes Out Homestand vs. Siena

March 16, 2006

UCF-Siena Game Notes in PDF Format
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ORLANDO - UCF hosts Siena to close out an eight-game homestand with a three-game series this weekend at Jay Bergman Field. Following the three-game set vs. the Saints, UCF hits the road in eight of its next nine games, including a three-game series at nationally-ranked TCU next weekend. Friday and Saturday's games start at 6:30 p.m. while Sunday's contest has a 12 noon first pitch.

? The Golden Knights lost 10-3 to No. 13 Florida Tuesday evening at Jay Bergman Field. The fifth-largest crowd in stadium history, 1,729 fans, witnessed the first visit by the Gators to UCF since 1994.

? Tuesday's crowd was the largest mid-week crowd in Jay Bergman Field history.

? UCF enters the weekend series vs. Siena batting .274 as a team. The Golden Knights have hit 10 home runs on the season. In addition, the team has stolen 23 bases in 31 attempts. UCF entered the week seventh in Conference USA in batting, tied for fourth in home runs and tied for third in stolen bases.

? On the mound, the Golden Knights own a team ERA of 4.25 in 178 innings of work. Opponents are batting .239 vs. UCF while the team has totaled 171 strikeouts. UCF is seventh in C-USA in ERA, third in strikeouts and third in opponent batting average.

? Audio of the Siena series is available on UCFAthletics.com as part of the "Golden Knights All-Access" package.

Inside the Siena Series
? UCF leads the all-time series 22-2 vs. Siena. Last season, the Golden Knights won three of four games from the Saints in Orlando. Siena snapped a 20-game losing streak vs. the Golden Knights with a 6-0 victory in game three of the series.

? Tim Bascom struck out a career-high 17 batters in a complete-game victory vs. Siena in 2005. Bascom was one strikeout shy of tying the UCF single-game record.

? UCF returns four position players who earned time vs. Siena in last season's series. Matt Horwath (.375) is the only player batting above .240 for his career vs. the Saints.

Career Numbers vs. SienaPlayer Avg. NoteMatt Horwath .375 2 doubles, 3 RBIMatt Ray .235 4-for-17Dave Lambert .143 1-for-7Ryan Bono .000 0-for-10="https://ucfknights.com/http:%3E%3C/ahref="http:>="https://ucfknights.com/http:%3E%3C/ahref="http:>

The Book on Siena
? The Saints shocked No. 5 Tennessee 9-8 Wednesday in Knoxville. It marked the highest-ranked team Siena has defeated in any sport since moving to Division I in 1976.

? Siena is 2-10 overall on the season, with all 12 games played on the road.

? The Saints lost 10-9 Tuesday to the Vols after holding an 8-3 lead entering the seventh inning.

? Siena owns a .256 team batting average in 12 games this season. The Saints have used the long ball, hitting eight homers on the year.

? On the mound, the pitching staff has a team ERA of 8.94. In 95.2 innings of work, Siena's pitchers have yielded 133 runs and opponents are batting .343 vs. the staff.

? Despite returning every starter from last year's team which posted a 19-5 record in conference play and finished second in the league, the MAAC coaches picked Siena fourth in the annual preseason poll. LeMoyne and Manhattan tied for first in the poll with defending champion Marist close behind.

? Gabe Perez, a 2005 MAAC First Team selection was named to the MAAC preseason team along with sophomore Jake Willis, a Second Team All-MAAC selection last season.

? Perez, the lone Siena representative on the first team last year, batted .257 with four home runs and 27 RBI. All four of the home runs came against conference competition. Perez carried a .315 average in 24 MAAC games played.

? Willis batted .298 and tied for the team lead with five home runs.

UCF vs. the Empire State
? The Golden Knights are 63-10 (.863) all-time vs. schools from the state of New York.

? UCF is 5-1 vs. New York opponents in 2006, including a 3-0 mark vs. Wagner.

Starting on the Mound for UCF
? Junior RHP Tim Bascom is the scheduled starter on the mound Friday for the Golden Knights. The preseason All-American has pitched well in the early going, posting a 2-1 record and 1.17 ERA in 30.2 innings of work.

? Bascom leads the team in ERA (1.17), innings pitched (30.2), opponent batting average (.130), strikeouts (32) and is tied for the team lead in wins (2).

? Sophomore RHP Jeremy Thorne was scheduled to start Saturday, but will miss the series due to illness. Freshman LHP Mitch Houck will take Thorne's place in the rotation.

? Houck is 1-1 with a 6.08 ERA in 13.1 innings of work in 2006. He won his last start, throwing six shutout innings with a career-high seven strikeouts.

? Freshman RHP Kyle Sweat gets the starting nod in the series finale Sunday. Sweat is 1-1 on the season with a 4.76 ERA in 28.1 innings of work. Sweat won his first career game in his last start, pitching six scoreless innings vs. Wagner.

The Dominator
? Senior closer Dominic Petracca has been nearly untouchable to start the 2006 campaign. The Sanford native has appeared in 12 games and totaled six saves, while posting a perfect 0.00 ERA.

? In 13.1 innings, Petracca has yielded six hits and opponents are batting .130 against him.

? He has registered 13 strikeouts and only one walk in 12 games.

? In the Stony Brook series, Petracca saved all three games, including two one-run wins. He struck out the side on 13 pitches in the series-opening 1-0 victory on Feb. 24.

? Petracca is tied for ninth in UCF single-season history with six saves. Jason Arnold owns the single-season record with 12 saves, set in 1998.

Help is on the Way
? UCF's bullpen has been terrific over the last 10 games. The bullpen is 1-0 with a 2.13 ERA in 38 innings of work.

? The unit has allowed just 28 hits and opponents are batting only .209 vs. the Golden Knight relievers.

? The bullpen has totaled 42 strikeouts and 12 walks during the 10-game streak.

? Junior Derek Abriola has been pitching the best baseball of his career over the 10-game stretch. The Orlando native has thrown 13.2 innings and totaled 19 strikeouts during the span, including a 2.63 ERA. Opponents are batting .188 against him.

Instant Impact
? UCF freshman C Steve Stropp has made an instant impact offensively for the Golden Knights. Despite only playing in 11 games, including eight starts, Stropp leads the team with 13 RBI.

? Stropp is batting .371 with two doubles and two home runs. He has scored 11 runs and owns a .600 slugging percentage.

? He set a career-high with four hits in Sunday's 5-2 victory over Wagner, including a three-run home run. He tied a career-high with four RBI.

? Opponents have stolen just two bases in six attempts with Stropp behind the plate.

Who's Hot
? Five starters are batting over .300 in UCF's last 10 games. Leading the way is Steve Stropp, with a .375 batting average in eight starts. He has two homers and 13 RBI over the last 10 games.

? Dave DiNatale is hitting at a .364 clip over UCF's last 10 games. The Parkland, Fla., native has six doubles and five RBI during the stretch.

? Junior IF Matt Ray (.321, 4 SB), junior IF Matt Horwath (.320, 7 RBI) and freshman 1B Kiko Vazquez (.310, 2 HR, 6 RBI) are also batting above .300 over the team's last 10 contests.

? As a team, UCF is batting .297 with six homers in its last 10 games.

? On the mound, UCF's pitching staff has a 2.83 ERA over the last 10 games. In 89 innings of work, the team has fanned 93 batters and opponents are batting .222.

Take Three for the Team
? Kiko Vazquez was hit by a pitch three times in the series opener vs. Wagner, which tied a single-game record at UCF.

? Current volunteer assistant coach Rich Wallace was also hit by a pitch three times in a game in 2002 vs. Tempe. Wallace owns the UCF career record after getting hit by a pitch 46 times during his four-year career.

? Vazquez was hit five times during the series vs. Wagner. He has been hit by a pitch seven times in 2006, tops on the team.

Knight Notes ...
? Matt Ray is 10th in UCF history in career stolen bases with 60.

? Ryan Bono is third in UCF history after being hit by a pitch 44 times. Dee Brown is second in school history after getting hit by a pitch 45 times.

? UCF is 3-5 in one-run games in 2006.

? The Golden Knights are 8-0 this season when leading after six innings of play.

? As a team, UCF is batting .265 vs. right-handed pitching and .295 vs. southpaws.

? Matt Ray leads the team with a .421 batting average (8-for-19) with runners in scoring position. As a team, UCF is hitting .264with runners in scoring position.