@uttylerbaseball looks to defend ASC Championship title
Trenton Buchhorn leads the ASC and is ninth in the nation entering the ASC Championship tournament. The Patriots play LeTourneau at 3 p.m. on Friday at Tornado Field in Austin.
Trenton Buchhorn leads the ASC and is ninth in the nation entering the ASC Championship tournament. The Patriots play LeTourneau at 3 p.m. on Friday at Tornado Field in Austin.
#5 LeTourneau (15-21)
at
#4 Texas-Tyler (26-15)
5/6/2016 | Austin, Texas | Attendance: 225
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LeTourneau000022000482
Texas-Tyler30000131X8122
PitchingIPHRERBBSO
Win: Collin Belcher (1-0) 0.200000
Loss: Andrew Harlan (4-7) 6.197403
BattingABRHRBIBBHR
Rayne Hobbs (LETU) 503000
Blake Wilson (UTT) 412000
Alex Bishop (UTT) 522501
Trenton Buchhorn (UTT) 512100
Sam Lane (UTT) 412000

Thursday, May 5, 2016
by Wes Bloomquist | wbloomquist@uttyler.edu

Championship: Bracket | History
ASC Twitter: #ASCbb | #d3b
CTX TOURNAMENT CENTRAL 

TYLER – The UT Tyler Patriots enter the American Southwest Conference Championship having won five of their last six games and will open against LeTourneau at 3 p.m. on Friday at Tornado Field in Austin.

The Patriots (25-15) are the defending ASC tournament champions and will be looking to win their fifth title in program history. This year’s conference championship features two four-team tournaments with the Blue Bracket being hosted by the ASC regular season champion and No. 1 seed Concordia. The Tornados (27-13) will play Texas Dallas (21-18) at 7 p.m. on Friday following the Patriot-YellowJackets (15-20) game. The Red tournament bracket will be played in Marshall with East Texas Baptist, Hardin-Simmons, Sul Ross and Howard Payne competing against each other. The winners of the Blue and Red brackets advance to the Gold tournament bracket for a best of three-game series. The host of the Gold series will be the higher ranked seed from the Blue and Red bracket winners. The Gold bracket winner is the ASC champion and earns an automatic berth in the NCAA Division III Baseball Championship.

UT Tyler won the tournament in 2009, 2010, 2013 and last season with 6-5 win over Texas Dallas in the finals at Tornado Field. The Patriots were 4-0 during last year’s tournament with returners Sam Lane, Michael Blevins and Chad Hayes each earning all-tournament honors. The Patriots enter this year’s tournament with a .303 team batting average which includes 90 doubles, 22 triples, 15 home runs and 282 singles (399 total hits). The team’s 22 triples lead the ASC and are the third most in the nation.

“I really like the draw that we have and the way we are playing baseball right now,” UT Tyler head coach Chris Bertrand said. “We are coming off our best two weeks as a team where we are getting some guys back healthy and we are really liking the changes we have made to solidify a really strong infield and our corner outfield. We like our lineup and played phenomenal defense last weekend. I like what we are doing and feel good going into the postseason.”

Cason Adams (6-2) is scheduled to make the start against LETU on Friday and enters with a 14-9 career record including a win over Sul Ross last Friday where he struck out six and scattered seven hits over 6 2/3 innings. A junior from Rockwall, the right-hander leads the Patriots with 51 strikeouts this season and has 126 through 177 1/3 innings in his career. In last year’s ASC Championship struck out six and threw 112 pitches in a no-decision where the Patriots took a 6-5 win over Concordia. His 126 strikeouts are the fourth most in UT Tyler history and his 117 1/3 innings and 14 wins are the fifth most.

Alex Bishop enters the postseason after putting together one of the best regular seasons at the plate in UT Tyler history. Bishop is hitting .426 which is the fifth best averages in program history (Kendall Fox, .444, 2007) and has matched Jeremy Harding (2007) with 18 doubles which is the program’s single-season record. Bishop, who went 1-for-2 with an RBI single in the ASC finals last season, is currently 13th in the nation and second in the conference with his 18 doubles and leads the ASC and is 12th nationally with a .533 on-base percentage. Bishop was named the ASC Hitter of the Week on Monday after hitting four doubles last week and enters the conference tournament on a five-game hitting streak and having reached base in 27 straight games. He has walked 29 times this season which is second in the ASC and 30th nationally and he leads UT Tyler with 19 multi-hit games and is tied with Trenton Buchhorn with 14 multi-RBI performances. Bishop, who went 6-for-10 in the regular-season series against LeTourneau, is second on UT Tyler’s stats sheet with 39 RBI this season.

Buchhorn, who is hitting .338 in his first season with the Patriots, leads the Patriots and conference with 52 RBI which is ninth nationally. Buchhorn had a stretch of 14 straight RBI games earlier this season and is fifth all-time with his 52 RBI this season. The all-time program record is 63 RBI by Brett Amyx in the 2007 season while the 53 RBI by Justin Ard in 2004 is fourth and the next step for Buchhorn to climb on the all-time list. An infielder who has played shortstop, second base and third base for the Patriots, Buchhorn leads the Patriots with five home runs and also has five triples to go along with 14 doubles. His five triples are the second most on his team and in the ASC and 25th nationally.

Graham Welch leads the nation with 10 triples this season after hitting two last week and is hitting .364 in his freshman season. A left-handed hitter like Buchhorn and Bishop, Welch has become one of the top leadoff hitters in the nation this season and enters the postseason with 59 total hits that includes his 10 triples, 11 doubles and one home run. The Patriot outfielder has 30 RBI and is only five triples away from Sam Lane’s career record of 15 triples. Welch went 6-for-14 with two doubles, two RBI and a triple in the three-game series against LeTourneau at Irwin Field.

Lane is hitting .307 in his senior season with nine doubles, three triples and one home run. UT Tyler’s center fielder is tied for the team lead with 42 runs scored with Bishop and Welch and leads the team by going 9-for-9 on stolen base attempts. Lane was feature on ESPN’s SC Top 10 for a diving catch on Super Bowl Sunday and is the program’s all-time best fielder with a 1.000 fielding percentage with 358 putouts, six assists and no errors in 162 games played in his career. Lane, who went 6-for-11 with two triples and two RBI, leads the program with his 15 triples and 619 at-bats and is second with 40 stolen base, fourth with 190 hits and fifth with 32 career doubles. The all-time career hits record is 219 by Kendall Fox from 2006-09 and Lane is within reach of T.J. Martin who had 194 hits from 2010-13 which is the third most. Joe Towns had 214 hits from 2005-09 for the second most hits in UT Tyler history.

“I think we have tournament experience in the right places,” Bertrand said. “Having a guy like Sam Lane being able to be a leader with so much experience is important. Alex was on our team last year and was a big part of why we won the conference tournament. Stalling, Blevins, Cason and Imig all played parts. I think that we have enough guys in our locker room who can share things with our younger players. I’m excited about our team and this tournament.”

The Patriots, who have outscored opponents 283-218 this season, are also getting strong contributions from freshmen Josh Burns and Blake Wilson who are hitting .321 and .315, respectively. Burns is playing in the outfield this season and enters the postseason with 17 hits in 15 starts, while Wilson has 29 hits along with catcher Brady McCoy. Burns hit the first grand slam for the Patriots this season in last Friday’s 18-4 win over Sul Ross. The homer was the first of his career. Wilson, who had five hits in the three-game series against LETU, leads the ASC with 15 sacrifice bunts which is 15th nationally through 27 starts in the infield. He started his freshman season playing at second base but has moved over to third with Braxton Hollenshead shifting to second from shortstop. Hollenshead blasted his first home run of the season last Friday and has 31 hits that includes eight doubles, one triple and one home run that has produced 20 RBI this season.

Michael Blevins (3-3) and Nate Imig (6-2) are also in the starting rotation and have provided quality innings throughout the season. Blevins, who has 41 strikeouts in 47 2/3 innings, is 14-9 in his career and has 135 strikeouts which is the third most in program history. Blevins is coming off a six-strikeout performance where he allowed only five hits and one run in seven innings at Sul Ross. Imig has 34 strikeouts through six starts and 12 appearances, including last Saturday were he did not allow a run and only five hits in a 5 2/3 inning win over the Lobos. A sophomore right-hander from Leander, Imig was a reliever early in the season but has seamlessly made the transition to starter with the bullpen being anchored by Tyler Stallings (5-1), Chad Hayes (2-2, 2 saves) and closer Reese Read (2-0, 2 saves). Read leads the Patriots with a 2.25 ERA and has limited the opposition to a .165 batting average which is the third lowest in program history.

Blue Bracket | Austin | Tornado Field | Hosted by Concordia University Texas

Concordia Texas Host Site: Live Stats, Video

Friday, May 6
Game 1: No. 5 LeTourneau vs. No. 4 UT Tyler, 3:00 p.m.
Game 2: No. 1 Concordia Texas vs. No. 8 UT Dallas, 7:00 p.m.

Saturday, May 7
Game 3: Loser Game 1 vs. Loser Game 2, 1:00 p.m.
Game 4: Winner Game 1 vs. Winner Game 2, 4:00 p.m.
Game 5: Loser Game 4 vs. Winner Game 3, 7:00 p.m.

Sunday, May 8
Game 6: Winner Game 4 vs. Winner Game 5, 1:00 p.m.
Game 7: Game 6 teams (if needed), 30 minutes after Game 5
 


Red Bracket | Marshall | Woods Field | Hosted by East Texas Baptist University

East Texas Baptist Host Site: Live Stats, Video

Friday, May 6
Game 1: No. 6 Sul Ross State vs. No. 3 Hardin-Simmons, 3:00 p.m.
Game 2: No. 2 East Texas Baptist vs. No. 7 Howard Payne, 7:00 p.m.

Saturday, May 7
Game 3: Loser Game 1 vs. Loser Game 2, 1:00 p.m.
Game 4: Winner Game 1 vs. Winner Game 2, 4:00 p.m.
Game 5: Loser Game 4 vs. Winner Game 3, 7:00 p.m.

Sunday, May 8
Game 6: Winner Game 4 vs. Winner Game 5, 1:00 p.m.
Game 7: Game 6 teams (if needed), 30 minutes after Game 5


The NCAA Division III Championship Bracket will be announced Sunday, May 15 at approximately
11:00 p.m. (CT) on NCAA.com

NCAA Regionals - May 18-22 (Played at eight campus sites)

The NCAA Division III Championship will be played at Fox Cities Stadium in Appleton, Wis., May 27-31