Baseball, Basketball, Women's Golf on a tear

The 3 major keys to our No.3 team's victory last night, 6-2 over No.5 Louisville, were the pitching of Mason Hickman, A.J. Franklin and Tyler Brown, the stellar defense and overall play by Austin Martin and the clutch 2 run double by Harrison Ray in the top of the 8th.

Hick pitched extremely well going 5.2 giving up 6 hits, 2 runs with 0 walks and 5 K's. Hick is just a strike thrower and when you do that you give your team a chance to win. He's been superb this season. He is 6-0 with a 2.15 ERA with just 13 walks and 79 strikeouts.

A.J. Franklin was just as spectacular in his 2.1 innings of relief. A.J. gave up just 3 hits, 0 runs with 0 walks and 3 K's. He was supremely clutch when we were tied 2-2 and the game was up for grabs. Tyler entered in the 9th and did what Tyler Brown does. He got the Cardinal hitters out 1-2-3 and struck out 2 of them before getting their final hitter to ground out to Austin to end the game.

Austin played another phenomenal game going 2 for 4 and scoring 2 runs. His defense may have been even better. AMart made clutch play after clutch play at third. His charging throw on a bunt to throw out the Louisville runner was sensational. He made the defensive stops when we had to have them. AMart is now hitting .431. That's a wow. What a player.

And Harrison Ray crushed an 0-1 pitch into the right central field gap in the top of the 8th that plated 2 and put us ahead 4-2. We added 2 more in the ninth via the walk. Louisville Coach Dan McDonnell used 9 different pitchers and made 8 different pitching changes. It was pretty close to ridiculous, but I guess he was trying to win the game. Made for a 3 hour and 40 minute contest. But it worked out for us, so no big deal.

We move to 39-9 overall, we're No.3 in the nation by by No.2 by the National College Baseball Writers of America (NCBWA), and No.2 by Collegiate Baseball. We have overtaken UCLA as the No.1 RPI (Ratings Percentage Index, which helps the selection committee seed the teams for NCAA Tournament) in the country. 

We are playing terrific baseball right now. That game had a postseason atmosphere to it, so it was huge to come out victorious.

Next up is No.21 Missouri (33-16-1, 12-11-1) this Friday through Sunday at the Hawk. Friday's game is at 6:30 PM CT, Saturday's game is at 2 PM CT and Sunday's game is at Noon CT. All games will be broadcast by SEC Network+ on the computer. 

So some impressive stuff by our baseball team. We've got a team that can go the distance. We always do, but this team is good enough to win it all if we keep up our work ethic. 

Stack got another commitment this time from Notre Dame transfer D.J. Harvey. The 6'6", 185 pound small forward was a 4 star and the No.1 player out of the state of Maryland in 2017. He has played 2 years for Notre Dame and averaged 10.7 ppg and 4.2 rebounds this past season. At DeMatha High School just outside of DC, D.J. averaged 17.3 ppg, 8.7 rebounds and 2.9 assists. I'm very familiar with DeMatha as I went to high school in the DC area, and they are a powerhouse and have always been and sent players to the high level college ranks and the professional ranks. So another super get for Stack. D.J. will have to sit out the 2019-20 season but will be eligible in 2020-21 with 2 years left. D.J. joins 93 4 star Dylan Disu (6'8", 185), 89 3 star point guard Scotty Pippen Jr,  88, 3 star small forward Kenyon Martin Jr (6'6, 195), and 87, 3 star forward Jordan Wright (6'6", 185). And I'm not sure Stack is done. This is all world recruiting by our coach. Really an amazing effort by Stack and the coaches. The future looks spectacular under Coach Jerry Stackhouse.

The Women's Golf team shot -8 today and lead the Auburn Regional by 3 over Florida State. We are presently at -4 overall. Florida State is -1, and Virginia is next at +4.

Morgan Baxendale shot a 5 under 67 with 6 birdies and 1 bogey. Fantastic play by our sophomore. Freshman Auston Kim continues to excel shooting a 2 under 70. Sophomore Louise Yu shot a 1 under 71 and junior Abbey C Carlson shot an even par 70. Senior Courtney Zeng battled and shot a +4, 76. The tournament takes the top 4 low scores.

So incredible stuff from our women.

The top 6 teams in the region advance to the NCAA Championships which will be played at Blessings Golf Club in Fayetteville, Arkansas May 17-22nd, that's a week from Friday when the tournament starts. Gotta finish it out tomorrow, but superb work by our women so far.