By Mike Lehman, TTU Sports Information Coordinator
COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – It's right back into the thick of things for the Tennessee Tech baseball team, as the Golden Eagles (19-5) return to some home field action as the host of the Miami (OH) RedHawks (10-10) Tuesday and Wednesday afternoon.
With games slated at 3 p.m. CT both days, the Golden Eagles will look heat up the bats against a potent offense from the Mid-American Conference. Tech won its third straight Ohio Valley Conference series over the weekend, taking two of three from UT Martin with dominant pitching performances on the bookends of the series.
Miami (OH) enters the series red hot, winning six of its past seven and 10 of its last 15. The RedHawks took two games in its conference-opening series against Western Michigan and has already met three familiar foes to the Golden Eagles. Miami (OH) fell to both Middle Tennessee and an OVC rival of Tech's in the form of Belmont. The RedHawks did manage to defeat Lipscomb on the road, something both teams share in common.
TENNESSEE TECH (19-5) vs. MIAMI (OH) (10-10)
Tuesday, Mar. 25 /
Wednesday, Mar. 26
Bush Stadium (1,100) – Cookeville, Tenn.
FOLLOWING THE ACTION
Webcast: Golden Eagle Sports Network on the OVC Digital Network (Dylan Vazzano)
Live Stats: ttusports.com
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
• The Golden Eagles own a slight edge in the all-time series against the RedHawks, leading 7-6 overall. Tech will look to capture similar results against Miami (OH) as it did against another Mid-American Conference team last season when the squad took both games in a two-game set against Bowling Green.
• Another big weekend by senior Daniel Miles has him sitting in first place in the OVC in several statistical categories, including batting average (.444), slugging percentage (.717), on-base percentage (.542), runs scored (36), and hits (44). In fact, the third baseman leads all of Division I baseball players in hits while ranking second in runs scored and in the top 10 in both batting average and slugging percentage.
• Junior Dylan Bosheers has been a monster with the bat all year, batting .402 off the power of 39 hits, including a team-high 11 doubles. He already has four long balls on the year after hitting six as a sophomore. He also has driven in 24 runs, tied for the second most on the Tech squad. Bosheers leads the Golden Eagles with five stolen bases on the year as well.
• After making 14 weekend starts as a sophomore, Jacob Honea returns to the starting role this week against the RedHawks. Honea led all returning pitchers on the Tech staff with six quality starts last season and will look return to that form on Wednesday.
• Already with 29 RBI on the season, senior Brandon Thomasson will look to end his recent cold streak. The slugger mashed his team-leading seventh home run over the weekend and is still smacking .337 on the year. With 18 extra-base hits powering a .695 slugging percentage, it's only a matter of time before the right fielder gets hot with the stick again.
Here's a look at the pitching match-ups between Tech and Miami (OH):
TENNESSEE TECH'S PROBABLE STARTING PITCHERS
Tuesday: Austin Tolle (RHP), JR, 6-2, 175
2-0, 4.91 ERA, 18.1 IP, 15 K, 7 BB
Wednesday: Jacob Honea (RHP), JR, 6-0, 183
1-1, 5.84 ERA, 12.1 IP, 8 K, 11 BB
MIAMI (OH)'S PROBABLE STARTING PITCHERS
Tuesday: Charles Zubrod (RHP), SR, 6-0, 195
0-0, 9.26 ERA, 11.2 IP, 11 K, 7 BB
Wednesday: Alex Brown (LHP), SR, 6-1, 225
0-0, 5.40 ERA, 1.2 IP, 0 K, 0 BB