The Sam Houston State baseball team will host their annual Fall World Series at Don Sanders Stadium next Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. All games are tentatively scheduled for 3:30 p.m.
Before the two-time defending Southland Conference champions battle each other, the Bearkats will play a fall exhibition game at Rice Sunday at 1 p.m.
The Kats won both meetings with the Owls last season and have taken four of the last five games between the two schools.
Rice finished last season in an NCAA Super Regional at North Carolina State. The Conference USA regular season and tournament champions won the NCAA Regional in Eugene, Oregon to advance to the Supers.
A young core of Bearkats will return in 2014. Sophomore starters Colt Atwood, Carter Burgess, Ryan Farney, and Ryan O’Hearn will all return for their junior seasons. Anthony Azar and Luke Plucheck will provide senior leadership after playing nearly every game the last two years.
Hayden Simerly, Shea Pierce, and Wyatt Powell were part-time starters and will look to crack the everyday lineup. Corey Toups is also expected to return from injury after missing most of the 2013 season.
Logan Boyd, Tyler Eppler, Andrew Godail, Alan Scott, and Jason Simms played big roles on the pitching staff and will look to do the same in 2014.
The Fall World Series will consist of three seven-inning games.
Sam Houston State’s 2014 schedule will feature another great non-conference schedule and several big matchups at Don Sanders Stadium. The Kats will play 30 games at The Don, including contests against Baylor, Houston and Rice.
SHSU will open the season Feb. 14 at home with a four-game series against Northern Colorado. The following weekend the Kats will welcome Dallas Baptist for a three-gamer.
This season will also mark the Kats first ever appearance at the Minute Maid Classic in Houston Feb. 28-March 2. The field for the 14th annual event will feature six universities, which all hail from the state of Texas. Rice and Houston will make their annual appearances and will be joined by Texas, Texas Tech, TCU and Sam Houston State.
The Kats round out their slate of tough non-conference series at home against Cal State-Northridge March 7-9.