Golden Knights Host East Carolina in First C-USA Series in Orlando

April 6, 2006

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ORLANDO - UCF hosts its first Conference USA series at home this weekend as the Golden Knights welcome East Carolina to Jay Bergman Field. The three-game series begins Friday at 6:30 p.m. and continues Saturday at 6:30 p.m. before Sunday's 1 p.m. series finale.

? UCF (19-13, 2-1 C-USA) topped USF 11-0 Tuesday behind a complete-game shutout by freshman LHP Mitch Houck. The Golden Knights hit two home runs in the 11-run thumping of the Bulls. East Carolina (19-12, 2-4 C-USA) stopped North Carolina A&T 14-2 Tuesday in Greenville.

? UCF is tied for third in C-USA with a 2-1 record while East Carolina sits in a tie for sixth in the league standings with a 2-4 mark.

? UCF is batting a season-high .298 and is averaging 6.4 runs per game. UCF is fourth in C-USA in batting.

? On the mound, UCF has a team ERA of 3.62 in 286 innings. The Golden Knights have totaled 276 strikeouts and allow 4.2 runs per contest. Opponents are batting .232 vs. UCF's pitching staff. The Golden Knights rank fourth in C-USA in ERA and second in strikeouts.

? This weekend's series features the C-USA Hitter and Pitcher of the Week. UCF's Tyson Auer won the hitter's award after batting .538 with 11 RBI in three games last week. ECU senior LHP Brody Taylor threw his first career complete-game shutout as a Pirate in last Sunday's 3-0 win over Houston.

? The first two games of the East Carolina series will air live on the UCF ISP Sports Network. Marc Daniels will call all of the action, beginning with the pregame show at 6:15 p.m. on WQTM-740 AM The Team.

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

Inside the East Carolina Series
? East Carolina is one of five Conference USA schools UCF has faced on the baseball diamond. The Pirates lead the all-time series, 4-2.

? The last time the two schools met, UCF won two-of-three from the visiting Pirates at Jay Bergman Field in 2003. UCF lost all three games at East Carolina in 2002.

? Three Golden Knights played vs. ECU in the 2003 series at Jay Bergman Field. Ryan Bono hit .500 (4-for-8) with a double, triple and RBI vs. the Pirates and Dave Lambert was 0-for-2 at the dish vs. ECU.

? Taylor Cobb tossed six shutout innings and totaled six strikeouts in the final game of the series to earn the series win for UCF.

The Book on East Carolina
? ECU has played two C-USA series on the season, losing two-of-three at then-No. 2 Rice and dropping two-of-three at home to Houston.

? The Pirates are batting .280 as a team, seventh in C-USA. ECU has hit 23 home runs as a team and stolen 31 bases in 43 attempts.

? ECU has one of the best pitching staffs in the league with a 3.33 team ERA, third in the conference.

? Just two ECU regulars are batting over .300. Senior catcher Jake Smith leads the club in batting (.302), home runs (6), RBI (34) and slugging percentage (.534).

? Billy Godwin is in his first season as head coach at East Carolina. Godwin arrived at ECU as an assistant coach in 2005 after six seasons as head coach of Louisburg (N.C.) College.

? At Louisburg, he posted a 262-85 record.

Starting on the Mound for UCF
? Junior RHP Tim Bascom will start the series opener for the Golden Knights Friday on the bump. The Preseason C-USA Pitcher of the Year is 4-2 with a 1.44 ERA in 50 innings of work.

? Bascom leads the team and ranks third in C-USA with 65 strikeouts.

? Bascom is second in C-USA in ERA (1.44), third in opposing batting average (.176), seventh in innings pitched (50.0) and tied for fourth in wins (4).

? Freshman LHP Mitch Herold starts game two for UCF. The southpaw is 1-3 with a 5.61 ERA in 25.2 innings. He has totaled 26 strikeouts and issued 24 walks on the season while opponents are batting .211 against him.

? Freshman RHP Kyle Sweat is the game three starter for the Golden Knights. Sweat is 2-1 with a 4.20 ERA in 45 innings. He is second on the team in innings pitched.

Bascom Climbing the Charts
? Tim Bascom is just one of eight players in school history to record 200 strikeouts. Bascom is eighth in school history with 200 punch outs.

? For his career, Bascom is 18-7 with a 2.92 ERA in 191 innings. His 2.92 career ERA is third in the UCF annals.

Marching in the Right Direction
? UCF was 13-6 in the month of March after starting the season with a 4-6 mark in February.

? UCF hit .318 as a team during the month, including a team-best average of .357 by junior IF Matt Horwath.

? On the mound, UCF finished with a team ERA of 2.53 in March.

? Junior RHP Tim Bascom had a monster month of March. He went 4-1 with a 1.67 ERA in 32.1 innings. Bascom finished with 51 strikeouts in the five games and opponents hit just .208 against him.

Help is on the Way
? UCF's bullpen has been terrific over the last 22 games. The bullpen is 5-2 with a 2.45 ERA in 73.1 innings of work.

? The unit has allowed just 59 hits and opponents are batting only .228 vs. the Golden Knight relievers during the 22-game streak.

? The bullpen has totaled 75 strikeouts and 22 walks during the 22-game streak.

? Junior Derek Abriola has been pitching the best baseball of his career over the 22-game stretch. The Orlando native has thrown 24.1 innings and totaled 28 strikeouts during the span, including a 2.59 ERA. Opponents are batting .193 against him.

Hoosier Hitter
? Senior Dave Lambert has been on fire coming off the UCF bench over the last 22 games. The Chesterton, Ind., native is batting .588 (10-for-17) with four doubles and eight RBI as a non-starter since March 1.

? In 13 games since March 1, Lambert has scored four runs and owns an .824 slugging percentage and .611 on-base percentage.

? Lambert leads the team with four pinch hits on the season. He is batting .308 as pinch hitter (4-for-13).

? In the starting lineup at USF (April 4), Lambert hit his first home run since May of 2004 with a solo shot vs. the Bulls.

Playing Under the Lights
? UCF is 11-4 in night games in 2006 and 8-9 during day contests.

? At night, Tyson Auer leads the team with a .451 batting average. He has four triples, two doubles and 19 RBI under the lights.

? As a team, UCF hits .332 at night, compared to .264 in the day.

? UCF has four regulars who bat over .400 at night. Along with Auer's .451 average, freshman OF Ryan Williams is batting .421, Eric Kallstrom (.409) and Matt Horwath (.400).

Terrific Tyson
? Tyson Auer has turned into an offensive force in his sophomore season at UCF. The Lake Mary native leads UCF in batting (.369), hits (38), runs (22), triples (6), RBI (25), total bases (56) and slugging percentage (.544).

? Auer is among the C-USA leaders in triples (T-1st), batting average (3rd), hits (T-6th), RBI (T-10th) and stolen bases (4th).

? Auer recorded a career-high six RBI in UCF's 18-1 win in the series opener at Marshall.

? He was named C-USA Hitter of the Week on April 3 after hitting .538 with 11 RBI in three games vs. Stetson and Marshall.

Ray Races Up the Record Books
? Junior IF Matt Ray moved into a tie for fourth place in UCF career history with his 70th career stolen base at USF on April 4. Ray is tied in the UCF annals with Tim Boeth (1998-99).

? Ray is third in C-USA in stolen bases with 17 stolen bases in 18 attempts. For his career, Ray has 70 steals in 79 attempts.

Wear It!
? Senior C Ryan Bono is tied for second in UCF history after being hit by a pitch 45 times.

? Bono also ranks sixth in school history with 48 doubles.

? The senior has been on fire in his last two games, going 8-for-9 (.889) with two doubles, three runs and four RBI.

First Inning Magic
? UCF has started on a good note in 2006, outscoring the opposition 33-14 in the first inning.