By Mike Lehman, TTU Sports Information Coordinator
COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Tech baseball team will look to keep its seven-game winning streak alive Friday afternoon as the Golden Eagles (8-1) welcome the Northwestern Wildcats (2-5) to Bush Stadium at the Averitt Express Baseball Complex for three-game series.
Beginning with a 3 p.m. CT start on Friday, Tech will host a Big Ten team for a third time in the past two season. The Golden Eagles grabbed a 2-1 season-opening series win last year over Illinois and fell in a single contest to Michigan State after the other weekday affair was cancelled due to inclement weather.
The Golden Eagles are fresh off a tough and exciting walk-off win over in-state rival Lipscomb Tuesday afternoon. Northwestern did not play a mid-week game after going 2-2 over last weekend in the Snowbird Classic. The Wildcats fell to Kansas in its third extra-inning loss this season before defeating both Nebraska-Omaha and Mississippi Valley State on Saturday. They then lost the final game of the weekend, 5-4, to Ball State. Three of their losses have come by just one run.
TENNESSEE TECH (8-1) vs. NORTHWESTERN (2-5)
|Friday, Feb. 28 /
|| Saturday, Mar. 1 /
||Sunday, Mar. 2|
|3 p.m.||2 p.m.||1 p.m.|
Bush Stadium (1,100) – Cookeville, Tenn.
FOLLOWING THE ACTION
Live Stats: ttusports.com
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
• This three-game series marks the first ever between the Golden Eagles and Wildcats, but far from the first between Tech and Big Ten opponent. Both Illinois and Michigan State made the trip to Cookeville last season. Tech has also faced off against Ohio State and Purdue in the past and owns a 3-5 overall record against Big Ten teams.
• Third baseman Daniel Miles is the offensive leader for the Golden Eagles, leading the team with a .429 average. He has scored 12 runs while driving in 11 of his own on the power of 15 hits, including two doubles and two home runs. His .556 on-base percentage leads the Tech squad and his .657 slugging percentage ranks second on the team.
• Perhaps surprisingly, lead-off man Zach Zarzour is tied for the team lead in RBI, having already driven in 12 runs on the year. He went 4-for-4 on Tuesday and is now batting .389 on the year. Zarzour is also tied for the team-lead in doubles with four so far this season.
• Senior Brandon Thomasson is following last year's early success nearly hit-for-hit, leading the Golden Eagles so far on the year with four home runs. He is tied for the team-high with 12 RBI and is the only Tech player to have hit a single, double, triple, and long ball so far this year. He leads the team with an .818 slugging percentage while batting .364 on the year.
Here's a look at the pitching match-ups between Tech and Northwestern:
TENNESSEE TECH'S PROBABLE STARTING PITCHER
NORTHWESTERN'S PROBABLE STARTING PITCHER