Monday, March 26, 2012

Game Day: Central Arkansas Bears @ MU

UCA Home Game
Central Arkansas has a 10-10 record, RPI ranked 196th. They have been swept by Creighton and McNeese State, but they swept SIU-Edwardsville and Lamar. This past weekend they took 2 of 3 from Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. They are 1-4 in away games, having spent most of the season down home in Conway, Arkansas.

They are 1-1 in mid-week series (lost to ORU, beat Mississippi Valley State, rained out at Oklahoma State), so their mid-week starters have not gotten much of a testing.

The Bears' team batting average is .282, led by OF Forrestt Allday, who carries a .422 BA, .606 OB% and .563 Slug%.

Their team ERA sits at 3.57. Bryce Biggerstaff (1-1, 2.33 ERA) appears to be their sole mid-week starter to date. He gave up 3 earned runs in 5.2 innings in the loss to ORU, and 2 earned runs in 1.2 innings in what turned into a Johnny Wholestaff game for the Bears against Miss Valley St. Biggerstaff, though, pitched three innings in relief this past Sunday, which makes it impossible to predict who UCA will send to the mound against MU.

Mid-Week Weather
TUE 80 / 30% T-Storms
WED 78 / Partly Cloudy
Biggerstaff's Twitter account features this quote: Fundamentals are a crutch for the talentless.

Most of the Bears' wins have come when their offense pours it on. In 8 of their wins they have average 10 runs vs. their opponents 3.5 runs. the outlier is a double-header win against Lamar, 2-0 and 1-0.

In their 10 losses, they were outscored 31-62.

Central Arkansas Baseball Twitter List

Bear Chat with Forrestt Allday (The UCA Echo)
What’s the biggest difference between Alvin Community College in Texas and UCA?

UCA is way bigger, but baseball in general, the practce time rules are different.

What attracted you to UCA?

I liked the team that was set in place. Coach [Allen] Gum was huge. I liked Gum and believe he can turn around this program.

What is your favorite pitch to get at the plate?

Fastball either high or right down the middle.

What is your least favorite pitch to get at the plate?

Probably a changeup.

Bears sweep Baseball Weekly honors (, 3/12)
The University of Central Arkansas Bears swept the Southland Conference Pitcher and Hitter of the Week honors on Monday for the first time since joining the league.

Junior left fielder Ethan Harris was named the hitter of the week and junior pitcher Caleb McClanahan was the SLC Pitcher of the Week, while McClanahan was also named the SLC Player of the Week by College Sports Madness.

Harris, from White Hall, hit .467 for the week and helped the Bears to a three-game sweep of the Lamar Cardinals on the opening weekend of conference play. Harris had a pair of home runs and 9 RBI for the week, and had UCA’s game-winning single in Friday’s 12-inning, 1-0 victory over the Cardinals.

McClanahan, a right-hander from Wynne, was dominant in that same game, starting and going 10 scoreless innings. He left with the score tied 0-0 after allowing just four hits and striking out a career-high 12 with only one walk. Lamar batters hit .118 against him.

McClanahan led a UCA staff that pitched three shutouts against Lamar, the first time in school history that was accomplished in a league series. UCA pitchers struck out 32 and walked just 4 in 28 innings last weekend.

UCA is currently in sole possession of first place in the SLC at 3-0. The Bears are second in the conference in hitting (.286) and pitching (2.73 ERA) and lead the league in fielding (.975). The Bears return to conference play this weekend at McNeese State.

Big 12 Newcomer of the Week (
Blake Holovach, Missouri, Jr., LHP, 6-5, 195, Overland Park, Kan./Coffeyville CC

Holovach earned his fourth win of the season, and his fourth in as many starts, as he threw 8.2 innings against Oklahoma State on Saturday, guiding Mizzou to a 4-1 victory. The southpaw allowed just one run, five hits and struck out four. Since the run Holovach surrendered was unearned, the junior has now gone 17.2 innings without giving up an earned run. He walked just one batter in the outing and did not give up an extra-base hit. Holovach has a 4-0 mark and a 1.97 ERA on the season, limiting opponents to a .217 batting average.

Emens throws gem to boost MU baseball to victory (Columbia Tribune)
Senior catcher Ben Turner had one piece of advice for Emens.

"Ben told me before the game to pitch until they drag me off the mound," Emens said after the Tigers' 4-2 victory yesterday on Simmons Field. "I took that approach."

Emens allowed one unearned run on three hits while striking out three in 51/3 innings as Missouri (14-8, 2-1) won its Big 12 opening series. Dusty Ross was charged with an unearned run in relief, John Miles pitched 11/3 shutout innings to get the win, and Jake Walsh earned his Big 12-leading eighth save.

TAKE TWO: MU first baseman earns his 15 minutes of fame (Columbia Tribune)
"We were all going crazy. I was on the phone with my mom," Stark said. "The first thing she asked was if my teeth were OK."

Roommate Turner was not among the crowd.

"I went to bed," the senior said. "He said, 'Dude, I'm going to be on "SportsCenter." ' I was like, 'I'm going to bed, dude.' "

Junior outfielder Brannon Champagne got his own dig in.

"I said, 'Way to make "SportsCenter." Way to make the Top 10. But you didn't have to jump.' It was awesome, though," he said.

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