Preview: McNeese opens NCAA baseball regionals against host TCU
NCAA Fort Worth Regional – McNeese (32-28) at #6 TCU (40-16)
• Friday, June 4 – 6 p.m.
• Saturday, June 5 – TBA
• Sunday, June 6 – TBA
• Monday, June 7 – TBA
• Lupton Stadium & Williams-Reilly Field • Fort Worth, Texas • TCU
• ESPN3 all games
McN – TBD
TCU – TBD
McN – Justin Hill (8th season at McNeese and overall, 232-190)
TCU – Jim Schlossnagle (18th season at TCU, 733-343; 20th overall, 810-390)
Vs. TCU – first meeting
Vs. Dallas Baptist – DBU leads 6-1
Vs. Oregon State – McNeese leads 1-0
McNEESE IN THE REGIONALS
• 6th appearance, 2-10 all-time
• Last appearance – 2019 (0-2 at the Nashville Regional)
• North end of Lot 2 near football stadium
COWBOY QUICK HITS
• McNeese will be making its 6th appearance in the NCAA Regional Tournament and second consecutive under head coach Justin Hill.
• It’s the first time in school history to be making back-to-back NCAA Regional appearances.
• McNeese is 10-2 over the last 12 games, hitting .308 as a team during that span with a 2.88 ERA and outscoring opponents by an 88-39 margin.
• Hill’s teams have compiled a 14-10 record in the league tournament with two championships (2019, 2021) and five times winning the first game to advance in the winner’s bracket.
• McNeese has won four tournament championships (1993, 2003, 2019, 2021) and finished as the runner-up once (1995). The Cowboys have posted a 26-29 overall record in the SLC tournament.
VS. FORT WORTH REGION FIELD
• The Cowboys are 2-6 against the three other Fort Worth Region teams – 1-0 vs. Oregon State and 1-6 vs. Dallas Baptist.
• Friday’s game will be the first matchup against TCU in school history.
• McNeese last played Dallas Baptist in 2010, falling 2-1 at the Lamar Tournament.
• The Cowboys defeated Oregon State in 1991 by a 6-5 score in 11 innings in the only other contest between the two schools.
HILL 2ND ALL-TIME IN CAREER WINS
• Head coach Justin Hill has recorded 232 career wins as McNeese’s head coach, ranking him second all-time in his 8th season.
• The late Tony Robichaux, a McNeese Hall of Famer, holds the school record with 263 victories from 1987-94.
POKES IN THE NCAA POSTSEASON
• McNeese will be making its 6th NCAA Regional appearance and have compiled a 2-10 record.
• In 2019, McNeese went 0-2 at the Nashville Regional, falling in two, one-run games, 6-5 to Indiana State and 9-8 to Ohio State in 13 innings.
McNeese NCAA Regional History
1988 NCAA Regionals at Stillwater, Okla. (Oklahoma State)
Oklahoma State 14, McNeese 4
McNeese 11, Louisiana-Lafayette 6
Loyola-Marymount 12, McNeese 5
1993 NCAA Regionals at Austin, Texas (Texas)
Texas 7, McNeese 4
McNeese 16, Maine 3
Cal State-Fullerton 2, McNeese 0
2000 NCAA Lafayette Regional (ULL)
Louisiana-Lafayette 11, McNeese 5
Marist 6, McNeese 5
2003 NCAA Houston Regional (Rice)
Rice 3, McNeese 2
Ole Miss 7, McNeese 1
2019 NCAA Nashville Regional (Vanderbilt)
McNeese 5, Indiana State 6
Ohio State 9, McNeese 8 (13 inn.)
TWELVE COWBOYS EARN DEGREES
• Twelve McNeese players earned their bachelor’s degree this spring: pitchers Jonathan Ellison, Brad Kincaid, Zack May, Hunter Reeves, Kevin Roliard, Brody Strahan, Andrew Wood; catchers Matt Keller and Brett Whelton; infielders Jake Dickerson and Nate Fisbeck; and outfielder Clayton Rasbeary.
• Also graduating were managers Austin Corley and John Dalton.
POKES BREAK RECORDS AT SLC TOURNEY
• McNeese broke a couple of team records in last week’s Southland Conference Tournament bracket finals 18-2 win over Southeastern Louisiana for most runs scored (18) and most hits (21) in a tourney game.
• The previous records were 14 runs and 15 hits in a 14-0 win over UT Arlington in the championship game of the 2003 league tournament.
• Both first baseman Jake Dickerson and catcher Brett Whelton set school tournament single-game record with four hits and four RBIs each in that game.
SEVERAL PLAYERS RETURN FROM ‘17, ‘19 CHAMPIONSHIP TEAMS
• 15 players on this year’s roster were a member of the 2019 SLC tournament championship team that qualified for the NCAA Tournament: Reid Bourque, Nate Fisbeck, Schuyler Thibodaux, Brett Whelton, Jake Dickerson, Payton Harden, Peyton Johnson, Julian Gonzales, Brad Kincaid, Jonathan Ellison, Hunter Reeves, Clayton Rasbeary, Brody Strahan, Zack May, and Will Dion.
• Fisbeck and Whelton were also members of the 2017 regular season championship team.
FEAR THE BEARD
• McNeese right fielder Clayton Rasbeary has one of the finest beards in all of college baseball, one he’s been working on for several years.
• The beard must provide some superpowers because Rasbeary has led the Cowboys in all offensive categories this season for the exception of RBIs and runs scored, leading in average (.360), hits (87), home runs (12), doubles (19), triples (5), slugging (.628) and on-base (.420).
• All good things must come to an end however because in July, he’s getting married, so only time will tell if the beard makes it to the wedding ceremony.
SEVERAL RECORDS IN JEOPARDY OF FALLING
• McNeese has put up some impressive numbers this season whether they be offensively or on the mound, and because of that, several long-time records could be broken this weekend.
• One of the longest-running single season record is 116 strikeouts in a season which was set back in 1990 by Terry Burrows. Will Dion will enter this weekend with 113 Ks on the year, averaging 7 strikeouts per outing.
• Dion tied a Burrows record earlier this season when he fanned 19 batters in a game against Prairie View back on Feb. 26.
• Another long-running record ready to fall is most hits in a season that stands at 90 and was set in 1999 by Ben Broussard. RF Clayton Rasbeary will go into the regional with 87 hits on the season, ranking No. 2 on the school’s record chart while CF Payton Harden has 80 hits, ranking him tied for 11th.
2021 NCAA Division I Baseball Championship
Fort Worth Regional
June 4-7, 2021
Friday, June 4
Game 1: #3 Dallas Baptist (37-15) vs. #2 Oregon State (34-22), 1 p.m. ESPN3
Game 2: #1 TCU (40-17) vs. #4 McNeese (32-28), 6 p.m. ESPN3
Saturday, June 5
Game 3: Loser Game 1 vs. Loser Game 2, 12 noon
Game 4: Winner Game 1 vs. Winner Game 2, 6 p.m.
Sunday, June 6
Game 5: Winner Game 3 vs. Loser Game 4, 1 p.m.
Game 6: Winner Game 4 vs. Winner Game 5, 6 p.m.
Monday, June 7
Game 7: Winner Game 6 vs. Loser Game 6, 3 p.m. (if necessary)
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