Baseball in Phoenix for crucial WAC series at Grand Canyon

WOLVERINEGREENDOTCOM Seth Rhineer
WOLVERINEGREENDOTCOM
Seth Rhineer
WOLVERINEGREENDOTCOM

May 15, 2014

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Game 1: RHP Danny Beddes (4-3, 3.18) vs LHP Andrew Naderer (8-3, 3.43
Game 2: RHP Ryan Evans (4-5, 4.88) vs RHP Coley Bruns (6-0, 2.44)
Game 3: RHP Andrew Freter (5-6, 3.95) vs LHP Ethan Evanko (5-1, 3.28)

PHOENIX --
The final weekend of the Western Athletic Conference regular season has Utah Valley University in Phoenix to face Grand Canyon in a crucial series with regular season champion and tournament seeding implications. This weekend’s series is the first meeting between the schools.

The Wolverines (24-26, 15-9) are two games back of the Antelopes (28-20, 17-7) in the conference standings and currently hold the No. 2 seed in next week’s conference tournament. Grand Canyon, although not eligible for the postseason due to its reclassification status, is one game behind Sacramento State in its bid for a regular season title.

Next week’s WAC Tournament begins May 21 at Cubs Park in Mesa. Sacramento State has locked up the No. 1 seed with UVU needing to at least match what Texas-Pan American does in its series at Northern Colorado. The Broncs hold the tiebreaker against the Wolverines. Bakersfield, tied with UTPA and one game back of UVU, lacks the tiebreaker against both teams and would need to finish a game in front both to move into the second seed.

Utah Valley was edged in its final non-conference game, 4-2, on Tuesday at Nevada. Prior to that midweek game, the Wolverines won two of three against Seattle U in the final home series of the year. UVU has won its last three WAC series, going 7-2 in those games.

The ‘Lopes have won all but one WAC series (at Texas-Pan American) and are 6-1 in their last seven league games. In addition to being second in the league standings, GCU ranks second in the WAC behind Sac State in both team batting (.280) and team ERA (3.35).

Grand Canyon also boasts the top two batting averages in the league, with Chad De La Guerra hitting .362 and David Walker right behind him at .361. Coley Bruns, who is slated to start on Saturday, is 6-0 with a 2.44 ERA to lead the pitching staff.