Virginia Baseball Prepares For Season-Opening Series At Auburn
Feb. 13, 2003
VIRGINIA PREPARES FOR SEASON-OPENER AT AUBURN: The University of Virginia baseball team will travel to Auburn, Alabama to face the Auburn Tigers on February 14-16 in UVa’s 2003 season-opening series. The Cavaliers will face the Tigers on Friday, February 14th at 3:00 PM; Saturday, February 15th at 2:00 PM and Sunday, February 16th at 1:00 PM. All three contests will be played at Auburn’s Hitchcock Field at Plainsman Park.
LAST TIME THEY MET/SERIES HISTORY: Virginia lost an 11-2 decision to Auburn the last time the two teams met back on January 30, 1999 in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. The contest was played at the Disney Complex as part of the ACC/Disney Blast. Auburn leads the all-time series with UVa in baseball, 5-2.
CAVALIERS ARE THE SECOND TEAM FROM THE STATE OF VIRGINIA TO FACE AUBURN THIS SEASON: The 2003 baseball season is just underway, but UVa is already the second school from the state if Virginia to face the Auburn Tigers. Auburn hosted the Virginia Commonwealth Rams on February 7-9. Auburn won the series, two games to one. Auburn stands 3-1 on the season with all four games being played at home.
VIRGINIA PICKED TO FINISH SEVENTH IN ACC COACHES POLL: The University of Virginia baseball team was picked to finish seventh in the 2003 Atlantic Coast Conference Preseason Baseball Coaches Poll. UVa received a total of 29 points in the poll to finish in front of both the Duke Blue Devils and the Maryland Terrapins. The ACC’s nine head coaches selected the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets as the top pick to win the conference championship in 2003 with six first place votes and a total of 77 points in the poll.
Georgia Tech return 22 of the 28 letterwinner from its 2002 squad that finished the season with a 52-16 record, including a 14-9 league mark and a trip to the NCAA College World Series. Just behind the Yellow Jackets in the poll were the Florida State Seminoles who finished a close second place with 73 points and two first place votes after finishing the 2002 season as the regular season and ACC Tournament Champions.
The Wake Forest Demon Deacons finished in third place with 65 points and one first place vote. Wake Forest finished last season with a 47-13-1 overall record and was the second seed at the ACC Tournament with a 17-6 ACC record.
The Clemson Tigers were picked to finish in fourth place with 54 points, while the North Carolina Tar Heels placed fifth in the balloting with 41 points. North Carolina was followed by the N.C. State Wolfpack who finished with 30 points good for sixth place in the poll, just one more point than Virginia with 29 points in seventh. Duke was picked to finish in eighth place with 19 points and Maryland rounded out the poll in ninth place with 17 points.
2003 ACC Coaches Preseason Predicted Order of Finish:
Place School Points 2002 Record/Finish1. Georgia Tech (6) 77 52-16, 14-9 ACC2. Florida State (2) 73 60-14, 18-6 ACC3. Wake Forest (1) 65 47-13-1, 17-6 ACC4. Clemson 54 54-17, 16-8 ACC5. North Carolina 41 43-21, 17-7 ACC6. N.C. State 30 33-26, 7-17 ACC7. VIRGINIA 29 25-32, 8-16 ACC8. Duke 19 24-34, 4-20 ACC9. Maryland 17 34-23, 6-18 ACC
HANSARD, STARR AND SWEET NAMED TRI-CAPTAINS: University of Virginia head baseball coach Dennis Womack has announced that three fourth-year players, Greg Hansard, Shooter Starr and Chris Sweet, have been selected as team captains and will serve as the tri-captains for the 2003 UVa baseball team. “The baseball captains at Virginia are chosen by their teammate, by their peers, and the coaching staff could not be happier with the three young men that were chosen,” said Womack. “These are three quality young men, terrific young men, who will proved the kind leadership that is needed for our program.”
RETURNING TRIO WITH HONORS: Virginia returns a trio of players who were honored or recognized for their stellar play from the 2002 season. Tri-captain CF Chris Sweet was a 2002 Major League Baseball Draft Pick, starting RHP Jeff Kamrath was a 2002 Second Team All-ACC selection, and SS Mark Reynolds was named a 2002 Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American.
UVA MORE THAN TRIPLED ITS 2002 HOME ATTENDANCE FROM PREVIOUS SEASON: Thanks in part to the brand new UVa Baseball Stadium, Virginia more than tripled its home attendance in 2002 from its 2001 totals. In 2002, UVa averaged 632 spectators after averaging only 198 spectators in 2001. The Cavaliers averaged 434 more spectators per game in 2002 than they did in 2001.
VIRGINIA RECORDED FOUR WINS OVER RANKED OPPONENT IN 2002: Last season (2002), Virginia recorded four victories over ranked opponents in baseball. UVa defeated #1 Florida State (11-10) on March 14th, #10 Georgia Tech (5-1) on April 26th, #19 Richmond (12-11) on April 17th and #24 North Carolina (8-3) on March 31st.
VIRGINIA WON FOURTH WEEKEND SERIES IN 2002: Virginia won four weekend series last year and was 4-7 overall in weekend series decisions for the 2002 season. The Cavaliers won their series with Bucknell (3-0), Seton Hall (3-0), Duke (3-0) and Maryland (2-1). UVa lost its series with Florida State (1-2), North Carolina (1-2), UNC-Charlotte (0-3), Wake Forest (0-3), Georgia Tech (1-2), Clemson (0-3) and N.C. State (0-3). Through 11 weekend series, Virginia’s record was 14-19 overall in those contests.
BUILD IT AND THEY WILL COME: Virginia’s all-time high single game attendance figure at Davenport Field at the UVa Baseball Stadium was 1,665 for its game with #5 Wake Forest on April 13, 2002.
WOMACK’S COACHING NUMBERS KEEP RISING: On March 11th, 2000, Dennis Womack coached in his 1,000th career game as a head coach when Virginia faced Eastern Michigan. Four days later (March 15), Womack earned his 500th career victory as a head coach when Virginia defeated Princeton by the score of 5-2. Although the win was just another victory to Womack, the victory marked yet another one of his many great accomplishments as head coach of the Virginia baseball program. Womack’s overall coaching record now stands at 565-580-7 through 1152 games.
FEELS LIKE HOME: Virginia just moved into its new home, Davenport Field at the UVa Baseball Stadium, and will have plenty of opportunities to get used to the surroundings in 2003. The Cavaliers will play a total of 35 home games in 2003, including 34 contests at UVa Baseball Stadium. The Cavaliers will also play a “home game” on a neutral site this year when Virginia faces Virginia Tech on April 23, 2003 in Salem, Va. at the Salem Memorial Baseball Stadium. UVa and VT annually play a three-game series with one true home game, one true road game and one neutral site affair. The neutral site contest alternates between the two schools every other year as a home contest despite its neutral location. The Cavaliers are scheduled to play only 21 true road games in the 2003 regular season, with only nine contests being played at non-conference facilities.