WSU Baseball | Photo by Kamp Fender
Tough preparation in the preseason for Raidergang baseball seems to have worked wonders for the team, as hard-fought losses against number two Vanderbilt and number 23 Alabama have turned into an undefeated season so far for Wright State.
The Raiders had close games against both top 25 teams, taking Alabama to 11 innings and losing to Vanderbilt by one run in their second game.
These matches prepared Wright State for league play, taking four games off both Northern Kentucky and Youngstown State, outscoring their opponents 77-21 in those eight games.
The 8-0 League start for the Raiders has earned Wright State Baseball players a number of Horizon League awards, with Tyler Black and Quincy Hamilton earning Batter of the Week awards and Jake Shrand and Austin Cline earning pitcher of the week awards.
Shrand earned the first award of the group after their weekend at Alabama, striking out eight batters in their tough 0-1 loss, and putting the Crimson Tide’s offense on the ropes all night.
Hamilton was next up, hitting three home runs and batting .417 against Northern Kentucky, helping the Raiders secure a four-game sweep and start out the HL season 4-0.
The Raiders swept the next week’s awards while sweeping Youngstown State, with Black slugging at 1.375 and hitting .563 and with Cline striking out 11 batters over seven innings on Sunday with no walks.
Looking ahead to UIC
The UIC Flames are 2-2 after their first weekend series against Milwaukee, and look to be the biggest threat to the Raiders this season, as they were placed second in the pre-season poll.
Matt Botcher is one of the players to worry about for Wright State, earning a Horizon League batter of the week award after a winning weekend at Florida International University, and is leading the Flames in slugging percentage.
Bryan Rosario leads in batting average and has good batting stats across the board. Jacob Key has been a great pitcher for the Flames so far, and is sitting at second all-time strikeouts in school history.
The Raiders will most likely continue their dominance against the Flames, but UIC’s star players could take some games off of Wright State if they aren’t prepared.