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Sun Belt Conference Baseball: Weekend Preview

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

 

Five big series’ highlight the fourth weekend of Sun Belt Conference baseball play this week.

After three weekends of play, Louisiana is 8-1, Arkansas St. right behind at 7-2, while Texas St. is 6-3, and Troy is 4-4.
WKU, UT-Arlington, and ULM are all 4-5, with South Alabama at 3-5, Georgia St. at 3-6, and UALR at 1-8.
Let’s take a look at the respective conference series’ schedule for this weekend, with  statistics entering play earlier in the week:

#2 LOUISIANA (27-3, 8-1) at TROY (16-13, 4-4)

Offensively, Louisiana ranks first in the league in almost every category, including hitting (.319), runs scored (243), home runs (36), and stolen bases (49).

The Cajuns have four of the top ten hitters in the conference, including Jace Conrad (.364), who ranks third, and who is also second in the league in RBI’s (35), Caleb Adams (.356), who ranks fifth, Seth Harrison (.354), who ranks sixth, and Tyler Girouard (.344), who ranks tenth.

Troy,  who is currently hitting a .270, good enough for sixth in the league, is paced by David Hall, who is fifth, overall, hitting a .357, along with five home runs and 19 RBI’s.

In terms of pitching, Louisiana ranks first, with a 2.91 team ERA., and is way above UALR, who is currently second, at a 3.47.

The Cajuns feature right-hander Carson Baranik, who ranks second in the league in ERA. (2.28), and Austin Robichaux, who ranks sixth (2.92).

Troy has an overall team ERA. of 3.72, which ranks fourth, and features left-hander Shane McCain, who leads the conference with a 1.93 ERA.

Louisiana, who has won 27 of their last 29, including three-straight, and the fact that they rank first in the league in pitching, hitting, and second in fielding are big reasons why

Game times are scheduled for 6 pm, 6 pm, and 1 pm (cdt),  Friday-Sunday.

 

ARKANSAS ST. (16-13, 7-2) at WKU (16-14, 4-5)   

Arkansas St. is off to a nice start in conference play, on game behind Louisiana, while WKU is looking to make up some ground on the leaders.

Offensively, Arkansas St. ranks fifth in hitting (.276), while WKU ranks just ahead in sixth (.283).

Pitching-wise the Red Wolves rank sixth in ERA. (4.10), while the Hilltoppers currently rank eighth (4.76).

Game times are set for 6 pm, 3 pm, and 1 pm (cdt) Friday-Sunday

 

SOUTH ALABAMA (13-15, 3-5) at TEXAS ST. (17-11, 6-3)

Texas St., only two games behind the first-place Cajuns, will be looking to continue their hot start, while South Alabama will be trying to begin a consistent stretch of baseball.

In the hitting department, South Alabama ranks ninth (.233), with Texas St. one spot ahead, in eighth (.247).

In terms of pitching, the Jaguars currently rank fifth as a team (3.86), while the Bobcats rank third (3.70).

Scheduled game times are 6 pm (cdt) on Friday, 3 pm on Saturday, and 1 pm on Sunday.

 

ULM (12-18, 4-5) at UT-ARLINGTON (12-17, 4-5)

This is a key series for both schools, who are in the middle of the pack. The winner of this series will still be in descent shape, while the loser will have a lot of ground to make up.

ULM ranks last in both hitting (.228) and fourth pitching (6.02 ERA.), while UT-Arlington ranks third in hitting (.293) and seventh in pitching (4.13).

Game times are set for 6:30 pm, 2 pm, and 1 pm (cdt), Friday-Sunday.

 

GEORGIA ST. (14-16, 3-6)  at UALR (11-15, 1-8)

As is the case in every series this weekend, this one is important, with both teams looking to jump-start their respective seasons.

Offensively, Georgia St. ranks second in hitting (.303), and features Nic Wilson, who leads the league in hitting (.400), home runs (12), and runs batted in (36), while UALR is hitting a .253, which ranks them seventh.

In the pitching category, the Panthers are currently ninth (5.61 ERA.), while the Trojans rank second (3.47).

Game times for the series are 6 pm (cdt) on Friday, 4 pm on Saturday, and1 pm on Sunday.

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