Baseball Practices Thursday Night in N.C. to Prepare for No. 23 ECU

March 20, 2009

ORLANDO (UCFAthletics.com) - UCF opens the Conference USA season on the road for the third time since joining the league in 2006 when it travels to No. 23 East Carolina for a three-game set beginning Friday at 7 p.m. A pair of arms with ERAs under 3.00 square off in game one as the Knights' Kyle Sweat (2-1, 2.91) meets the Pirates' Chris Heston (2-0, 2.66).

Practice Photo Gallery

Game Notes in PDF Format

Friday vs. ECU - 7 p.m.
Saturday vs. ECU - 3 p.m.
Sunday vs. ECU - 10:30 a.m. (originally at 11 a.m.)
East Carolina - 13-4 Overall, 0-0 C-USA
UCF - 7-12 Overall, 0-0 C-USA
Clark-LeClair Stadium (5,000)
ECU leads, 11-4
Live Stats:

UCF vs. Florida Recap
A sellout crowd of 2,758 set a single-game attendance record March 18 to check out UCF battle No. 25 Florida. The Gators held a slim 3-1 lead before plating two in the seventh and two in the eighth, ultimately sealing the 7-3 win. Brandon Romans homered for the sixth time, while Colin Arnold and Beau Taylor posted two hits each. The Black and Gold used seven pitchers while UF brought in five.

Upcoming Opponent
Winner of three-straight games, East Carolina stands at No. 23 in the country thanks to a league-best 13-4 non-conference record before C-USA play opens this weekend. The Pirates have been playing stellar ball in the three key areas of the game, posting a .377 team batting average, 4.56 staff ERA and a .971 fielding percentage. A total of five consistent starters boast averages over .400, paced by Stephen Batts' mark of .471.

The Series
ECU claims an 11-4 advantage in the all-time series with the Knights, including a 2-1 series win in Orlando a year ago. In 2007, the Pirates, who were No. 30 in the country, swept the Black and Gold in Greenville, but it was only by a combined victory margin of eight runs.

Crowded House
Continuing its trend of setting attendance records in recent years, UCF drew a school-record 2,758 fans March 18 when it battled No. 25 Florida. It was the third time a crowd of 2,000 entered the gates of Jay Bergman Field, as it eclipsed the previous record of 2,397 set in 2008 against USF.

Leader of the Band
With his solo home run vs. No. 25 Florida March 18, senior Brandon Romans remained atop the Conference USA leaderboard with six dingers. There are five players right behind him with five home runs. Romans' previous season-high was two round-trippers set last year.

Everyday I Write the Book
Junior Shane Brown dominated pitching during the week of March 9-15, going 8-for-17 with a .471 average, and currently holds a career-long 11-game hitting streak. Keeping up with Brown, Brandon Romans' hitting streak reached eight games before it came to a close March 17, but the senior paces the Knights' offense with a .375 average.

Take On Me
The Winter Springs freshmen took over in the win over Northern Iowa March 14. Pitcher Bryan Brown cruised through the first three innings in his first start only to face trouble in the fourth. However the Knights remained leading when the inning was over, 6-5, as Anthony Figliolia came on and eventually went 3.2 scoreless innings with three strikeouts for the win. At the plate, Jake Huxtable recorded his first homer in a three-RBI affair.