March 21, 2013
BEAUMONT - After being handed just the second home loss of the season on Wednesday, the Lamar baseball team will look to get back on track this weekend with a Southland Conference series against nearby McNeese State.
The Cardinals (19-4) are 17-2 at Vincent-Beck Stadium and have picked up a series victory in all six weekends this year.
Perhaps the main reason for the team's prowess this season is the success of Cardinal starting pitchers. Eric Harrington, Friday's scheduled starter, is within striking distance of a number of all-time school records, specifically games started and innings pitched. This season, the Groves native boasts of a flawless 4-0 record with an impressive 2.29 earned run average.
The Last Meeting
April 29, 2012
Jonathan Dziedzic has also been strong on the mound for the Red and White. The southpaw boasts of 38 strikeouts this season in just 31.2 innings pitched and he's been involved in a pair of shutouts, including a 6-0 win at UTPA last weekend.
Last season, both Harrington and Dziedzic tossed complete game victories over McNeese with Dziedzic fanning 10 and allowing a run and Harrington tossing a five-hit shutout.
LU's third starter will be David Carver, who enters the weekend with a team-leading 1.78 ERA and a 4-1 record. The junior out of Reseda, Calif., started earlier this week against Houston Baptist and allowed a pair of scores with four Ks in four frames of work.
Darian Johnson has been the star of a Cardinal offense that is averaging over six runs per game. The senior slugger carries a team-best .417 average into the series, and four other Cards also boast of averages better than .300. Both Johnson and Seth Dornak lead the team in runs batted in with 19 apiece, and the duo of V.J. Bunner and Jude Vidrine have combined to score 44 runs.
Defensively, the Cards have been impeccable and have committed just seven errors with a .992 fielding percentage.
McNeese is coming into the weekend with a 12-8 record, including a 2-2 mark on the road. The Cowboys' pitching staff has been a strong point, posting a 3.88 ERA while limiting opposing hitters to a .250 average. All-time, the Cards are 112-69-1 vs. the Cowboys.
Friday will also mark Cancer Awareness night at Vincent-Beck. In addition to being the annual Zeta Tau Alpha-sponsored Pink Out game, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes will be selling "Hearts for Connor" in an effort to help offset the medical costs of six-year-old Connor Stanton, a local cancer patient. Stanton will also be throwing out the first pitch.
The game is slated to begin at 6:30 p.m.