Baseball Open Season with Three Victories
Mar 10, 2015
JACKSONVILLE, Ill. - The University of Dubuque baseball team started the 2015 season with three consecutive victories on their opening weekend in a neutral site against Elmhurst College Blujays. The Spartans were picked to finish fifth in the Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (IIAC) coaches poll while the Blujays were picked seventh in the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin (CCIW). Both teams have high hopes for the 2015 season after both missed their conference tournaments just a year ago.
The Spartans jumped out to a quick start and were led offensively by a trio of sophomores. One of the standout underclassmen is Yelma, Washington native, sophomore shortstop Eddie Pablo (Second Team All-Iowa Conference performer at utility) who saw action in 29 games last season and finished with an .278 hitting percentage and on base percentage of .352. He led the Spartans on opening weekend with four hits in nine at bats for .444 average and two RBI's. Defensively he finished with six putouts and four assisted putouts.
Sophomore Dalton Garst (Winnebago, Ill.) earned the start at first base and ranked second on the first games of the season in hitting .385, led with four RBI's with 27 putouts and one assisted put out. He finished the weekend with UD's lone homerun in the second game of the series on a three RBI blast in the third inning. He played in 28 games and earned 20 hits a year ago and started the 2015 season with five hits in 13 at bats.
Matt Hogan saw limited varsity action last season and played in all three games batting .333 while playing right field and being a designated hitter. Freshman Will Doherty (Cross Plains, Wis.) played flawlessly as starting catcher and finished the weekend with 24 putouts and three assisted putouts with no pass balls. Senior right handed pitcher Josh Eastman (Sr., Edgerton, Wis.) returned to last season form and captured the win on a nine inning complete game 2-1 victory. He would allow four hits, one earned run, and six strikeouts after facing 29 Blujays. He started 12 games in 2014 and ended with a 5.15 ERA in 57.2 innings pitched. Junior left handed pitcher Tyler Trifeletti (Woodbury, Minn.) tossed four innings gave up two hits and one earned run after facing 15 batters in the final game of the series, a 3-2 victory.
Six Spartans made an appearance on the mound with sophomore Trent Van Egtern (La Crosse, Wis.) fanning nine batters in his five innings to lead UD's 24 K's. The group did not throw a wild pitch in opening weekend and finished with a team ERA of 1.80.
The Spartans continue their play in the warm southern sun of Fort Myers, Fla. next week over spring break. Tentative schedule at Gene Cusick Classic:
Mar. 14 vs. St. Lawrence Univ. (N.Y.) Ft. Myers, Fla. 3:00 p.m. (9 inning game)
Mar. 15 vs. UM-Morris (Minn.) Ft. Myers, Fla. 9:00 a.m. (9 inning game)
Mar. 15 vs. McDaniel College (Md.) Ft. Myers, Fla. 12:00 p.m. (9 inning game)
Mar. 16 vs. Lassell College (Mass.) Ft. Myers, Fla. 9:00 a.m. (two, 7 inning games)
Mar. 17 vs. Manchester College (Ind.) Ft. Myers, Fla. 9:00 a.m. (9 inning game)
Mar. 18 vs. Keystone College (Pa.) Ft. Myers, Fla. 9:00 a.m. (9 inning game)
Mar. 19 vs. UW-Platteville Ft. Myers, Fla. 9:00 a.m. (9 inning game)
Mar. 20 vs. McDaniel College (Md.) Ft. Myers, Fla. 9:00 a.m. (9 inning game)