UCF Prepares for Road Series at UAB Friday-Sunday

May 12, 2011

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By Brian Ormiston

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (UCFAthletics.com) - The Knights (30-19, 7-11) have two series left to make a move in the C-USA standings, and they now turn their attention to a trip to UAB this weekend. Game one with the Blazers (27-22, 9-12) is scheduled for Friday at 7:30 p.m. ET.

Game Notes in PDF Format

Friday - Birmingham, Ala. - 7:30 p.m. ET
Saturday - Birmingham, Ala. - 3 p.m. ET
Sunday - Birmingham, Ala. - 12 p.m. ET
UAB - 27-22 Overall, 9-12 C-USA
UCF - 30-19 Overall, 7-11 C-USA
Jerry D. Young Memorial Field (1,000)
UAB Leads, 9-6
Live Coverage:
UCFAthletics.com and Twitter.com/UCF_Baseball

Upcoming Opponent
-Although it took both midweek games vs. Jacksonville State, UAB is coming off three losses at Southern Miss last weekend. However it gets No. 1 starter Dillon Napoleon back after he missed the Tulane and USM series with an injury. The righty has a 5-2 record with a 2.58 ERA in 73.1 innings.
-Napoleon and Ryan Wooley (6-5, 3.12) anchor a staff that has a 3.93 ERA while holding opponents to a .246 average.
-The UAB bats have 17 homers and 68 sacrifice bunts, while the defense carries a .977 fielding percentage.

The Series
-The road team has taken two of three in each of the last two seasons, with UAB holding a 9-6 overall lead.
-In UCF's last visit to Birmingham in 2009, it set a school record with 29 runs and 28 hits in the first game of the weekend, including D.J. Hicks scoring a UCF-record six runs.
-Former Knight Shane Brown had a streak where he reached base in 18-straight plate appearances until it ended in game three at UAB, and Brown hit .846 on the weekend.

UCF's Quick Bio
-RPI: No. 23
-Strength of Schedule: No. 17
-Record vs. Ranked Teams: 7-7
-Record vs. Teams in the Top-50: 9-10
-Leads C-USA with four non-conference victories over top-20 teams in the RPI
-Has five of C-USA's 20 wins against non-conference ranked teams
-Nine losses are by just two runs or less

Tearing the Cover Off in C-USA Games
-D.J. Hicks (.343) and Jonathan Griffin (.337) may lead the Knights in hitting this season, but they also pace the team in C-USA games as well.
-Griffin holds a .386 mark in league contests, crushing six homers, while Hicks has a .382 average with 16 RBI.
-Hicks currently has a seven-game hitting streak in C-USA games.

Loving the Road
-Ronnie Richardson (.357) and Jonathan Griffin (.343) are each hitting higher than .340 on the road.
-The Knights have made just 15 errors (.978 fielding percentage) in 18 games away from Orlando (UCF has a 10-8 record).

Lefty Dominance
-Senior left-handers Nick Cicio and Johnny Sedlock combined to make 19 starts last year. Cicio finished with a 5.64 ERA in 59.0 innings while Sedlock had a 5.95 ERA in 56.0 innings on the hill.
-In 2011, the duo has transformed into solid relievers for head coach Terry Rooney.
-Cicio carries a 2.53 ERA, striking out 40 in 42.2 innings with four saves (21 appearances, one start).
-And Sedlock has a 2.49 ERA, sitting down 21 on strikes in 21.2 innings (11 appearances, one start).
-Sedlock has a 21.0 strikeout-to-walk ratio, as he has issued just one free pass this year.

Our Job: Field Managers
-UCF has not committed an error in four-straight games, which is the first time that has happened since March 16-20, 2004.
-In the Jay Bergman Field era (opened in 2001), the Knights have not had five-consecutive games where it did not have an error (old box scores unavailable to determine the overall school record).
-UCF owns a .976 fielding percentage, and if the season ended today that would be a single-season record, surpassing the .973 percentage set by the 2001 Knights.

Useless Stat of the Day
-Beau Taylor has had at least three official at-bats in 20-consecutive starts.

D-I Programs in the State of Florida
-Eight of the 13 Division I programs in the state of Florida are ranked in the top-50 in RPI.
-UCF has an 8-5 record (.615) against Florida schools this year, and is the only team to face Florida, Florida State and Miami.
-UCF's strength of schedule is No. 17 nationally, trailing only Florida (No. 2) and Florida State (No. 7).
-Best records vs. D-I Florida programs (with RPI listed):
1) No. 4 Florida State - 12-4 - .750
2) No. 2 Florida - 11-5 - .688
3) No. 12 Stetson - 12-7 - .632
4) No. 23 UCF - 8-5 - .615
5) No. 31 FIU - 5-4 - .556
6) No. 49 FAU - 6-5 - .545
7) No. 22 Miami - 7-7 - .500
8) No. 45 JU - 7-8 - .467
9) No. 77 USF - 9-11 - .450
10) No. 128 B-CU - 10-14 - .417
11) No. 123 FGCU - 8-13 - .381
12) No. 82 UNF - 4-10 - .286
13) No. 294 FAMU - 0-7 - .000