Patriot League Baseball Championship Preview

PATRIOTLEAGUE.ORG Lehigh's Mike Garzillo
PATRIOTLEAGUE.ORG
Lehigh's Mike Garzillo
PATRIOTLEAGUE.ORG

May 13, 2014

Patriot League Baseball Championship Preview Get Acrobat Reader

CENTER VALLEY, Pa.- It will be an all-Pennsylvania final round in the Patriot League Baseball Tournament when third-seed Lehigh heads to top-seed Bucknell in the Championship series on Friday and Saturday. The teams will play a doubleheader for games one and two starting on Friday at Noon and a decisive third game, if necessary, on Saturday at Noon. The entire series will be shown for free on Patriot League Network.

Patriot League Championship Notebook

PLN to Broadcast Championship Series
The entire Patriot League Baseball Championshipo series will be shown for free on Patriot League Networkwith a broadcast produced by Campus Insiders and featuring Sirius XM MLB Network Radio host Mike Ferrin calling play-by-play and former major league catcher Chris Hoiles doing the color. Every contest will go the full nine innings in the best-of-three series, with the winner earning the an automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals.

Semifinal Recaps
Lehigh used dominant pitching while Bucknell broke out the bats to advance to the Championship series. The Mountain Hawks won two out of three at second-seed Army, including a 3-1 win in the decisive game on Sunday. Lehigh pitchers allowed only four runs, two earned, and 15 hits in 27 innings over the three games. Bucknell had a big Saturday against Navy to sweep the Mids 15-6 and 8-4 in the semifinals. The Bison hit .342 in the series and 10 of their 26 hits went for extra bases. Anthony Gingerelli scored five runs while Alex O'Neill, Joe Ogren and Rob Krentzman each drove in five.

Bucknell and Lehigh History in Patriot League Championship
Bucknell is in the Patriot League Championship series for the 10th time, and first since winning it all in three games at Holy Cross in 2010. The Bison also won League Tournament titles in 1996, 2001, 2003 and 2008, and will try to match Navy and get within one of Army with a sixth Patriot League title overall. Bucknell is 2-1 in League Championship series at home, winning in 1996 and 2003 and falling in 1999. Lehigh will play in its fourth League Championship series, with the Mountain Hawks falling on the road in 2002 and 2005 before defeating Bucknell in a sweep at home for its lone title in 2006. Lehigh also won a semifinal game against the Bison in 2005 and has a 3-0 mark in the League Tournament against Bucknell.

Regular-Season Meeting
Bucknell took three of four at home against Lehigh when the teams faced off on April 5-6, and did so in dominant fashion. The Bison won the first three games by a combined score of 27-6 to move to 7-0 in the Patriot League at the time before the Mountain Hawks salvaged the finale with a 4-2 win. The Bison are 12-4 against the Mountain Hawks over the last four seasons, winning three of four in the series between the schools in each campaign.

Home, Road Winners Split in Recent League Championship Series
Home field and higher seeds guarantee nothing in the Patriot League Championship. Since the tournament moved to four teams in 2008, the hosts and visitors are split 3-3 in the final round and the top-seed has only won the tournament twice. Bucknell won as the fourth seed in both 2008 and 2010, while Army was a winner as the third seed at top-seed Holy Cross last season. The top seed won in 2011 (Navy) and 2012 (Army). The top seed fared better in the three-team tournament played from 1996-07, with the No. 1 claiming the title nine times in 12 seasons including the final six from 2002-07.

Patriot League Baseball Championship

No. 3 Lehigh Mountain Hawks (25-22, 10-10 PL) at No. 1 Bucknell Bison (27-17-1, 15-5 PL)
Games 1 and 2: Friday, 12 p.m. (DH) Game 3 (If Necessary):Saturday, 12 p.m.

Third-seed Lehigh visits top-seed Bucknell for the Patriot League Baseball Championship series on Friday and Saturday...The teams will play a doubleheader at Noon on Friday followed by a decisivie third game, if necessary, at Noon on Saturday...The entire series will be shown on Patriot League Network and produced by Campus Insiders, with Sirius XM MLB Network Radio host Mike Ferrin calling play-by-play and former major league catcher Chris Hoiles doing the color...Bucknell advanced to the Championship series with a sweep of fourth-seed Navy at home on Saturday, while Lehigh went to Army and won the decisive game three against the Black Knights on Sunday to pull out the series...Bucknell is in the Patriot League Championship series for the first time since 2010 and 10th overall, and aims for its sixth League title...The Bison are hosting the Championship series for the first time since winning it in 2003, and are 2-1 in title series at Depew Field...Lehigh is in the Championship series for the fourth time and first since 2006, when it won its lone title in a home sweep of Bucknell...That was the only championship matchup between the schools, while Lehigh also won a semifinal against Bucknell in 2005 for a 3-0 tournament record against the Bison...Bucknell won three of four at home when the teams played in the regular season on April 5-6, with the Bison winning by a combined score of 27-6 in the first three games before Lehigh took the finale 4-2.

LehighThe Mountain Hawks are in the championship series for the first time since 2006 after winning two of three at Army over the weekend...Lehigh got great pitching throughout the series in allowing only four runs, two earned, and 15 hits in the three games...Second baseman Mike Garzillo and outfielder Justin Pacchioli made the first-team All-Patriot League sqaud for Lehigh, with reliever Nick Cassell, catcher Tim McKay and first baseman Connor Faust on the second team...Garzillo and McKay were also Academic All-Patriot League honorees... Pacchioli led all players in Patriot League games with a .386 batting average, .482 on-base percentage, 27 hits and 11 steals.

Bucknell The Bison made it back to the Patriot League Championship for the first time since 2010 as they exploded for 23 runs in a sweep of Navy in the semifinals on Saturday...Bucknell won the first game 15-6 and took the nightcap 8-4...The Bison hit .342 in the series and 10 of their 26 hits went for extra bases..Anthony Gingerelli scored five runs while Alex O'Neill, Joe Ogren and Rob Krentzman each drove in five...After earning its first share of a regular-season title since 2009, Bucknell led all schools with six All-Patriot League selections, including five on the first team...Starting pitcher Dan Weigel, catcher Jon Mayer, second baseman Joe Ogren, outfielder Anthony Gingerelli and designated hitter Corey Furman made the first team, with freshman outfielder Brett Smith on the second team...Smith was named Patriot League Rookie of the Year, while Scott Heather earned the Patriot League Coach of the Year award...Bucknell also led all schools with four Academic All-Patriot League honorees as Weigel, Ogren, Tom Hrabchak and Tucker Rekucki made the list... Weigel went 5-0 in Patriot League play and led all players with a 1.10 ERA.