The Thomas baseball team eyes another pivotal weekend against conference foe and NAIA No. 3 Embry-Riddle.
The winner of this three game series will walk away atop the Sun Conference standings as the bulk of league play begins to emerge.
“We’re both right there,” Thomas coach Mike Lee said. “It settles [first place] for another week. All it takes is one bad weekend and you can drop from first to fourth in a heartbeat, then you spend the rest of the year trying to dig yourself out.”
Thomas heads to Daytona Beach having won six of its last seven after enduring a six game losing streak – its first and only of the season.
The Night Hawks downed Eckerd on Wednesday behind pitcher Evan Morgan, who threw seven innings and four strikeouts while allowing just four hits in the 2-0 shutout.
During the recent rise, the Thomas bats hit a much-improved .323 up from the team .294 average, which Lee said is vital as the team heads to Embry-Riddle.
“We’re getting there. It’s just a matter of executing what we practiced,” Lee said of his offense. “We’re going to see top notch pitching this weekend – the best arms we’ve seen all year.
Embry-Riddle will send right-hander and Division I transfer Daniel Poncedeleon to the mound for Friday’s 6 p.m. matchup.
Poncedeleon (2-1), who has also been selected in three MLB drafts, has a 2.58 ERA with 36 strikeouts (seven per game) while allowing just 23 hits in five appearances this season.
Poncedeleon (2-1), who has also been selected in three MLB drafts, has a 2.58 ERA with 36 stirkeouts (seven per game) while allowing just 23 hits in five appearances this season.
Stetson Nelson, who held Thomas to three hits in the final series of the season last year, will pitch on Saturday for Embry-Riddle.