Huskies Trek South to Face Texas Tech and Brigham Young

GO HUSKIES
GO HUSKIES

GO HUSKIES

Feb. 24, 2011

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The Matchups for Games 3-6
Fri., Feb. 25 @ 1 p.m. (CT) vs. Brigham Young at Dan Law Field (Lubbock, Texas)
    RHP Zach Oates (0-1 | 0.00 ERA) vs. RHP Taylor Cole (1-0 | 0.00 ERA)
Sat., Feb. 26 @ 12 p.m. vs. Texas Tech at Dan Law Field
    RHP Tony Manville (0-0 | 7.71 ERA) vs. LHP Robbie Kilcrease (0-0 | 1.29 ERA)
Sat., Feb. 26 @ 4 p.m. vs. Brigham Young at Dan Law Field
    LHP Jake Hermsen (0-0 | 0.0 IP) vs. LHP Mark Anderson (0-0 | 1.29 ERA)
Sun., Feb 27 @ 12 p.m. vs. Texas Tech at Dan Law Field
    RHP Jeremy Gonzales (0-1 | 6.0 ERA) vs. RHP Jamen Parten (1-0 | 1.80 ERA)

Game Coverage
All games can be followed with live stats via GameTracker on NIUHuskies.com.  For the games involving Texas Tech, a radio broadcast will be available on TexasTech.com.

The Leadoff
After dropping the season-opening doubleheader out west versus Southern Utah, the Huskies head south into their second weekend of action looking for their first win of the 2011 season.  NIU did not get its first victory until March 5 at California State-Bakersfield and has the opportunity to get on the board about a week earlier than 2010.  

Senior ace Zach Oates will look to receive better luck in his second outing.  His six-inning, one-hit, eight-strikeout effort against Southern Utah was tagged with a tough loss as two unearned runs gave SUU the advantage.

Brigham Young travels to Texas after a 1-2 showing at Northwestern State.  The Cougars are coming off a 4-1 loss to NSU last Saturday as they split a doubleheader.

Texas Tech is the hottest team entering the weekend.  The Red Raiders started the season with four straight home wins, the latest being against Northwestern, 8-6, on Sunday, which was the second time that Texas Tech had beat the Wildcats on the weekend.  TTU also took down Utah Valley and Mid-American Conference foe Western Michigan.

Already with one game taken away from its schedule after a wintery mix forced the finale of the SUU series to be cancelled, Northern Illinois should not have to worry about the weather in Lubbock.  The forecast calls for three days with temperature highs between 70-80 degrees and mostly sunny.

The All-Time Series
NIU and BYU have never met before.

Texas Tech holds a 9-2 advantage over the Huskies.  The teams last met in 2008 as the Red Raiders took two games from NIU (11-5 | 8-5) on March 8-9 in Lubbock.  NIU's last win against TTU was on February 23, 2007, which was an 8-5 decision in Lubbock.

Carry-Over Streaks
Tom Barry: Given up only two earned runs in each of his last two outings, dating back to May 16, 2010.

Ben Etcheverry: Surrendered no earned runs over his last three appearances, dating back to April 17, 2010.

Joe Etcheverry: Three-game hitting streak, dating back to May 22, 2010.

Brett Frantini: Four straight games with at least one run scored since May 20, 2010.

Kyle Glancy: Recorded at least one strikeout in four appearanves, dating back to May 11, 2010.

Jeremy Gonzales: Three or more strikeouts in six straight starts, dating back to April 24, 2010.

Jake Hermsen: Allowed three earned runs or less in three straight starts, dating back to April 21, 2010.

Zach Oates: Given up three earned runs or less in each of last three starts, dating back to April 4, 2010.

Jamison Wells: Three-game hitting streak, dating back to May 22, 2010.

Tom Zelasko: Three straight scoreless appearances, dating back to May 15, 2010.

The "Ralph" Advantage
Under Mathey, the Huskies are 102-63-1 at Ralph McKinzie Field, home of Huskie baseball, and a 7-5 win over Milwaukee March 24th, 2010 gave NIU its seventh win in its last eight openers.  An 11-7 mark last season gave the Huskies their seventh above .500 season in their last eight at "The Ralph."

Illi-Noise
NIU was 5-3 against Illinois foes in 2010.  In eight seasons under head coach Ed Mathey, the Huskies are 56-27 versus intrastate opponents.

Pro Huskies
NIU has hosted at least one game in a professional ball park in each season since 2005.  The Huskies have played and won four games at Elfstrom Stadium in Geneva, Ill., home of the Kansas City Royals' Low-A affiliate Kane County Cougars.  The Huskies return to "The Elf" in 2011 against UW-Milwaukee on May 17.  In 2008, NIU hosted No. 29 Notre Dame at U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago, Ill., home of the 2005 World Series Champion Chicago White Sox.  NIU and White Sox raised over $65,000 for the NIU February 14 Forward, Together Forward Scholarship Fund.  In 2009, NIU hosted Milwaukee at Road Ranger Stadium in Loves Park, Ill., home of the Northern League's Rockford RiverHawks.  The Huskies also faced Northwestern at Road Ranger Stadium last season, marking NIU's first two games in the Rockford area and the first two Division I baseball games at the stadium.

Huskie Pros
At least one Huskie has signed a Major League Baseball contract in each of head coach Ed Mathey's eight years at NIU.  Overall, 24 NIU players have signed pro contracts under Mathey, and seven have been selected in the MLB Amateur Draft.

NIU Staying Classy
The NIU baseball program has kept pace with the rest of NIU's sports programs to help extend Huskie athletes' streak of semesters with a combined cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better to 11.A quartet of Huskies earned all-star nods during the summer of 2010 as they were competing in various wooden bat summer leagues.  In the Prospect League All-Star Game, Alex Jones represented the Quincy Gems while Alex Beckmann and Tom Zelasko represented the DeKalb County Liners.  Joe Etcheverry represented the San Louis Obispo Rattlers in the California Collegiate League.

Huskie Boomers
Mathey's 2010 signing class of nine future Huskies is the largest of his eight-year tenure.  The class, which is full of large, athletic frames of raw talent, is composed of six players from the state of Illinois with one each from Arizona, Minnesota and Missouri.  Providing added depth all around for the 2011 roster, the group includes RHP Eli Anderson (Glenview, Ill./New Trier Township), LHP/OF Anthony Andres (Western Springs, Ill./St. Rita of Cascia), C Joe Battaglia (Westchester, Ill./St. Joseph), IF Chris Divarco (Long Grove, Ill./Carmel Catholic), RHP/IF Alex Klonowski (Kearney, Mo./Kearney), RHP/OF Trey Lange (Mesa, Ariz./Skyline), OF Jordan Rishavy (Rochester, Minn./John Marshall/North Iowa Area C.C.), RHP/IF Kevin Sweeney (Chicago, Ill./Fenwick) and IF Jeff Zimmerman (Tinley Park, Ill./Victor J. Andrew).

Boys of Summer
A quartet of Huskies earned all-star nods during the summer of 2010 as they were competing in various wooden bat summer leagues.  In the Prospect League All-Star Game, Alex Jones represented the Quincy Gems while Alex Beckmann and Tom Zelasko represented the DeKalb County Liners.  Joe Etcheverry represented the San Louis Obispo Rattlers in the California Collegiate League.

Wells Rounded
Being an exception athlete, Wells will not only plays baseball for Northern Illinois, he will also plays wide receiver on the football team.  Wells was a three-year letterwinner at Kimberly High School in Combined Locks, Wis., earning two-way Wisconsin Football Coaches Association (WFC) first team all-state, two-way WFCA all-region, and 2008 WFCA Defensive Player of the Year as a senior.  He was also named to the Associated Press' 2008 Wisconsin all-state football team at both wide receiver and defensive back.   
 
It's All In The Family
Zach Badgley is the fourth member of his family to take the mound for Northern Illinois, following Dan (1997-2001), Mark (2003-07) and Nick (2008-09).  Since 1997, there has only been one season (2002) of NIU baseball without a Badgley family member.

On Deck
Next up for the Huskies is another trip west.  NIU will face four different opponents in four days in Surpise, Ariz., at Surprise Stadium, home of the Kansas City Royals and Texas Rangers' Spring Training Practice Facility.  The Huskies start the trip with a 5 p.m. (CT) contest against Air Force on Thursday, March 3.

-NIU-


 

 

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