SFA visits on heels of weekend sweep
3-0 Aggies continue homestand against in-state rival
Published: Monday, February 17, 2014
Updated: Monday, February 17, 2014 23:02
Fresh off a sweep over Northeastern on opening weekend, the No. 24 Texas A&M baseball team (3-0, 0-0 SEC) hosts Stephen F. Austin (2-1, 0-0 SLC) at 6:35 p.m. Tuesday at Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park.
Freshman pitcher Tyler Stubblefield, brother of A&M junior right-hander Gandy Stubblefield, will be given the start for the Aggies. Tyler Stubblefield made his first appearance in Friday’s win over Northeastern, throwing two scoreless innings.
Tyler Stubblefield’s counterpart for the Lumberjacks will be senior right-hander Kevin Bishop. Bishop, who is a College Station native and graduate of A&M Consolidated High School, will return to his hometown to make his 2014 debut.
Last season, SFA finished sixth in the Southland Conference with a record of 28-29, and was bounced from the conference tournament after losing its first two games.
The Lumberjacks are led by senior outfielder Ricardo Sanchez, who was chosen as a member of the preseason All-Southland Conference Team. Senior designated hitter Mackenzie Handel paces the club with a .500 batting average.
The Lumberjacks lost shortstop Hunter Dozier to the 2013 MLB draft. Dozier was taken No. 8 overall by the Kansas City Royals, the highest ever for a player from SFA.
A&M head coach Rob Childress was pleased at the competitive level of this year’s newcomers as 10 new faces — including seven freshman and three junior college transfers — made appearances in the season’s opening weekend.
“We were able to get some of the younger guys and newcomers on the field,” Childress said. “I thought they all held their own and competed at a very high level.”
Junior infielder Logan Nottebrok, who transferred to A&M from Temple College this season, leads the Aggies in almost every offensive category, including batting average (.444), runs scored (5), walks (4), doubles (2) and total bases (9). His lone home run of the season lifted the Aggies over Northeastern Sunday in a 1-0 walk-off victory.
The Aggies have dropped just one game in the 22 all-time meetings between the two schools, which are separated by just 134 miles.
The Lumberjacks lone victory came in 2010 when SFA edged the Aggies, 7-6.
A&M redeemed its misstep last season when the Aggies logged a 9-2 victory behind Corey Ray’s eight strikeouts.
Following Tuesday’s game, the Aggies will continue their opening eight-game home stand Friday when they host Sacramento State for the second weekend series of the season.