@UTTylerBaseball to open season on Friday in Mississippi
#18 UT Tyler (1-0)
#7 Trinity University (0-1)
2/10/2017 | Millsaps College | Attendance: 35
UT Tyler0120011106111
Trinity University101000000272
Win: Cason Adams (1-0) 6.072207
Loss: Maul (0-1) 2.033311
Daniel Williams (UTTBB) 413110
Martin (TUBB) 412100

Tuesday, February 7, 2017
by Wes Bloomquist || wbloomquist@uttyler.edu

TYLER – The No. 18-ranked UT Tyler baseball team opens its season this weekend with three games in Jackson, Mississippi starting with No. 11 Trinity at 2 p.m. on Friday.

The Patriots are back-to-back American Southwest Conference champions and are being led by first year head coach Brent Porche who took over the program in August after four seasons at LSU-Alexandria. UT Tyler will play Berry College at 1 p.m. on Saturday and then Maryville College at noon on Sunday in Jackson before returning home where it will host the Clements Fluids Classic from Feb. 17-19 at Irwin Field.

UT Tyler is starting its 14th season of play and owns a 415-154 all-time record with six NCAA postseason appearances and five American Southwest Conference Championships since the inaugural 2004 season. Trinity is coming off winning the NCAA Division III National Champion and will also be the Patriots’ first game at home when the two teams meet at 6 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 17 at Irwin.

Porche has 26 returners on the UT Tyler roster, including Trenton Buchhorn and Alex Bishop who earned ABCA/Rawlings All-Region honors last season and Brady McCoy, Cason Adams, Graham Welch, Blake Wilson and Reese Read who are returning all-conference selections. The returners are joined by 10 transfers and 12 players straight out of high school who will begin practice on Monday in preparation for the season.

Buchhorn is on the ASC Watch List after driving in 60 runs for the Patriots last season and hitting .318 with 17 doubles, seven triples and six home runs. A junior from Arlington, Buchhorn enters his second season with the Patriots having earned all-region and all-conference honors last year. Adams, a senior right-hander, comes into his final year at UT Tyler with a 16-9 career record after going 8-2 last season. The Rockwall native struck out 69 and had a 3.53 ERA as a junior and is fourth all-time in program history with 144 career strikeouts. Bishop returns for his junior season after hitting .407 to lead the Patriots last season. A left-handed hitter from Canada, Bishop established a new program record with 22 doubles in 2016 and had 36 walks which is the fourth most in program history. He comes into the season with 93 career hits and 65 RBI. Graham Welch returns after an impressive freshman season where he established a new program record with 10 triples and also had a .340 batting average that included 71 total hits. He had 15 doubles and home run to go along with his 10 triples. A sophomore from Plano, Welch started 51 games in the outfield for the Patriots and had 36 RBI.

McCoy started 41 games at catcher as a junior and had six doubles and three home runs, while Wilson hit .319 and started 38 games in the infield as a freshman. Wilson had six doubles and 13 RBI and established a new program record with 15 sacrifices. Daniel Williams was named the ASC Championship Gold Bracket MVP and finished his junior season with a .355 batting average and three home runs, while Dalton Smith had 17 hits.

Along with Adams, the Patriots return a strong group of pitchers including Nate Imig who was 6-2 last season and is 10-2 in his career. A junior from Leander, Imig has 46 strikeouts in 65 innings of work in his career. Max Page emerged as a starter in the postseason and recorded a 3-3 record as a freshman with 21 strikeouts, while Reese Read was 3-0 and has six saves. A right-handed senior, Read held opponents to a .171 batting average and had a 2.35 ERA in 30 2/3 innings. Chris Stodolka returns to the bullpen where he is 4-0 in his career with 58 strikeouts in 45 1/3 innings of work.

UT Tyler enters the season at No. 18 in the Collegiate Baseball poll and No. 20 by d3baseball.com’s ranking.