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Senior Brad McKewon is expected to remain in the leadoff role in 2014.
Courtesy: Eric Francis

Baseball Opens 2014 with Three Games at Arkansas-Little Rock

OMAHA, Neb. - The Creighton baseball team opens the 2014 season with a three-game set against Arkansas-Little Rock.

Probable Pitching Matchups (2013 Stats)
Friday:
CU - Taylor Elman (So.-RHP)    4.50 ERA, 0-0, 22.0 IP, 11 BB, 13 Ks
UALR - Tracis McDonald (Sr.-LHP)    3.79 ERA, 2-2, 40.1 IP, 15 BB, 33 Ks

Saturday:
CU - Tommy Strunc (So.-RHP)     4.14 ERA, 7-3, 71.2 IP, 44 BB, 55 Ks
UALR - Ethan Schlechte (Sr.-RHP)    4.72 ERA, 5-4, 68.2 IP, 28 BB, 44 Ks

Sunday:
CU - Austin Groth (So.-RHP)    5.29 ERA, 2-2, 34.0 IP, 18 BB, 14 Ks
UALR - Sam Theolo (So.-RHP)                Pitched at Parkland JC

Bluejays vs. UALR Series
Creighton and Arkansas-Little Rock have met 11 times previously, with the Bluejays holding the series edge, 8-3.  The Bluejays have won the last four meetings, including a 4-2 contest in the Riverview Inn Classic Tournament on March 8, 2013.

About Arkansas-Little Rock

  • Located in Little Rock, Arkansas
  • UALR has an enrollment of 12,927.
  • Known as the Trojans.
  • Arkansas-Little Rock finished 2013 with an 28-28 record and an 13-17 mark in the Sun Belt.  
  • UALR retirmed three starters from its 2013 season.
  • The Trojans were picked to finish ninth in the Sun Belt’s preseason poll.


UALR Head Coach: Scott Norwood

  • Record of 123-149 in six seasons as a head coach at UALR.  
  • Norwood has a 412-289 mark in 13 years as a head coach.
  • Led Arkansas-Little Rock to the NCAA Tourmanet in 2011, earning the automatic berth by winning the Sun Belt Tournament as a No. 8 seed.
  • Also served as the head coach at Ouachita (2005-08), Sterling (2002-05) and Mercyhurst (1999).


Scouting the Trojans (2013: 28-28, 13-17 Sun Belt)
Arkansas-Little Rock closed the 2013 season with a 28-28, qualifying for the Sun Belt Tournament as a seven-seed.  

The team returns 13 letterwinners including three starters in 2013.  On the mound the Trojans rotation includes returners McDonald and Schlechte.  UALR has a history of starting strong under Norwood, posting an 11-3 more on the opening weekend of play under Norwood.

Opening Day under Servais:
In the 45 recorded openers, Creighton is 23-22, including an 11-9 win at
Dallas Baptist in 2013. Creighton has won seven of the 10  season openers under Ed Servais, including the last four.

 Date     Opponent     Score
    2/15/13    at Dallas Baptist    W, 11-9
    2/17/12    at Central Arkansas    W, 4-3
    2/19/11     vs. Toledo     W, 5-1
    2/20/10     vs. SIU Edwardsville     W, 22-0
    2/20/09     at Sam Houston State     L, 8-6
    2/22/08     at Washington State     W, 8-4
    2/9/07     vs. Gardner-Webb     W, 4-3
    2/11/06     at UALR     L, 11-12
    2/11/05     at Sam Houston State     W, 9-6
    2/14/04     vs. Southern Utah     L, 10-5

We Started Once Before:
Arkansas-Little Rock and Creighton met in the 2006 season opener in Little Rock.  In that contest it was the Trojans taking the game, 12-11.  Arkansas-Little Rock roared back from an 11-8 deficit with four runs in the ninth inning.

Happier Times:
The Bluejays would prefer to remember the end of the 2013 season opener as it was Creighton rallying from an 8-4 deficit with four runs in the eighth and three in the ninth to down Dallas Baptist, 11-9.

Fast Start in February
In his first three years on the job, head coach Ed Servais posted .500 records or better in the month of February. The Jays then went sub-.500 in each of the middle three opening months. Since 2010, however, Creighton has been dominant in the opening month, posting a 16-3 mark.  Below is  Creighton’s records in the month since 2004:

Year     Record
2004     3-3
2005     6-2
2006     5-3
2007     2-4
2008     1-2
2009     0-6
2010     3-1
2011     7-1
2012    3-2
2013    3-0
Total     33-24

Young Guns Ready to Shine
A trio of sophomores (Taylor Elman, Tommy Strunc & Austin Growth) will open the 2014 season as the rotation.   During the 2013, Creighton’s seven freshmen combined to record 12 wins.  Prior to 2013, Bluejay freshmen had combined for 11 wins over four seasons.  

Freshman Wins Under Servais
2013:    12
2012:    0
2011:    0
2010:    5
2009:    6
2008:    4
2007:    6
2006:    2
2005:    1
2004:    2

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