February 02, 2009
USI baseball goes south to open 2009
Eagles and Pirates match-up for three-game series
EVANSVILLE, Ind. – The University of Southern Indiana baseball team will travel south to open the 2009 campaign at Armstrong Atlantic State University Friday afternoon. The Screaming Eagles and the Pirates play a three-game series Friday, Saturday, and Sunday in Savannah, Georgia.
The Eagles are coming off their 2008 GLVC West Division title, their first regular-season conference crown in 15 years. USI, which was 36-20 overall and 24-7 in the GLVC, posted its second straight 30-plus win season and earned a second straight trip to the GLVC Tournament for the first time since 1993 and 1994.
Leading the Eagles into 2009 is senior right-handed closer and preseason All-American Shaun Larsen (Tell City, Indiana). Larsen, who was a third team All-American and first team All-GLVC performer in his first season as an Eagle, led the nation last year with 17 saves in 28 appearances. He also had a 4-1 record with a 3.57 ERA and 42 strike outs in 35.1 innings of work.
USI also returns junior right-hander Casey Geiger (Albion, Indiana), who was 7-3 with a team-best 2.75 ERA a year ago. Geiger also had a team-best and school-record 30 appearances in 2009.
At the plate, senior third baseman/pitcher Alex Thieroff (Greenfield, Indiana) is the top returning hitter. Thieroff, a third team All-GLVC player, batted .300 with 34 RBIs, 25 runs scored, 13 doubles, four triples, and four home runs as a junior.
Thieroff is followed by senior designated hitter/outfielder Chad Werry (New Harmony, Indiana). The third team All-GLVC designated hitter hit .298 with 32 RBIs and tied for the team lead with five homes.
The Pirates of AASU have already started their season, going 1-1 against top-ranked Mt. Olive College with one game to play on Monday. AASU was 27-23 overall last year, going 14-13 in the Peach Belt Conference.
The Eagles trail the all-time series with the Pirates, 11-1, after dropping three to AASU to begin the 2008 season. AASU took the three games last spring 9-4, 6-4, and 13-2.
Ray Simmons, USI Sports Information