Baseball: Panthers on the road at Birmingham-Southern for NCAA Regional

Baseball: Panthers on the road at Birmingham-Southern for NCAA Regional

The NCAA Division III Baseball Committee has announced the 58 teams that will compete in the 2019 NCAA Division III Baseball Championship. LaGrange will travel to Birmingham, Ala. to face Birmingham-Southern in a two-team regional beginning Friday. Times for the regional games have not been announced.

The Panthers took two of three games from Birmingham-Southern to open the 2019 season. LC won 7-2 on Feb. 8 at Cleaveland Field, then split a doubleheader in Birmingham on Feb. 9. The Panthers won Game 1 5-2, while Birmingham-Southern won 4-1 in the second game.

Four teams will compete at thirteen regional sites and two teams will compete at three regional sites. The four-team regionals will use a double-elimination format and the two-team regionals will play a best-of-five series. Forty conference champions qualified automatically.

Winners of the sixteen regional tournaments will qualify for eight, best-of-three series at the super regionals, Friday-Saturday, May 24-25. The eight super regional winners will then qualify for the pool play double-elimination championship at Perfect Game Field at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Friday-Tuesday/Wednesday, May 31-June 4/5, 2019.

Notes:
LC is 5-6 in NCAA Tournament play… The Panthers have risen to No. 14 in the D3Baseball.com/NCBWA Top 25 poll... The baseball team joins the LC softball, golf, and men's basketball teams in making the NCAA tournament at least three years running… Golf and men's basketball each reached their prospective tournaments four years in a row… The Panthers went unbeaten in the USA South Tournament for the third straight year, a run of 12 straight wins… LC enters the regional on a season-best seven-game winning streak and has won 11 of its past 13 games… The Panthers' pitching staff led the USA South with a 3.37 ERA and six shutouts… LC was second in the conference in batting with a .308 average… The Panthers were fourth in scoring, averaging 7.6 runs per game… Sophomore outfielder McKinley Erves led the team and the USA South with a .417 batting average… Freshman outfielder/infielder Joe Ruth had a team-best 41 RBIs… Sophomore relief pitcher Tanner Chafin led the conference and was seventh in Division III with a 1.13 ERA… Senior starting pitcher Austin Fain was second to Chafin with a 1.48 ERA and 20th nationally… Erves had 20 multiple hit games to lead the team… Ruth had the team's only five-hit game at Huntingdon on March 9… Ruth had a team-high 14 multiple RBI games… Sophomore outfielder Jack Layrisson had the team's season high with five RBIs at Huntingdon on March 9… Freshman infielder Cael Chatham had the team's longest hitting streak of 16 games… The Panthers have not lost a game when leading after the sixth inning… LC is 3-0 in extra-inning games… The Panthers have scored 10 or more runs eight times…

Past Regional Results:
2018 Holly Springs, N.C.
Randolph-Macon 2, LaGrange 1
LaGrange 2, Alvernia 1
LaGrange 9, The College of New Jersey 5
Christopher Newport 4, LaGrange 3

2017 Danville, Va.
LaGrange 7, Otterbein 1
LaGrange 12, Rowan 5
Roanoke 5, LaGrange 2
Salisbury 4, LaGrange 2

2010 Fayetteville, N.C.
LaGrange 3, Salisbury 1
Mary Washington 6, LaGrange 2
Salisbury 12, LaGrange 1

2019 USA South Athletes of the Week
March 24- Joe Ruth, USA South Rookie of the Week
March 10- Joe Ruth USA South Rookie of the Week
March 10- Trey Pearce USA South Player of the Week
Feb. 17- Liam Carbone USA South Rookie of the Week
Feb. 17- Michael Menheart USA South Rookie Pitcher of the Week

USA South All-Conference
Austin Fain, First Team
E.J. Churchich, Second Team
Spencer Douches, Second Team
McKinley Erves, Second Team
Joe Ruth, Second Team
Richie Post, Third Team

Austin Fain, USA South Pitcher of the Year