Feb. 28, 2013
Week Three Notes | Dairy Queen Classic Central | NIU Baseball Podcast
WEEK TWO SLATE
Friday: Utah, 12:15 p.m. Video * / Gametracker / @NIUScores
Saturday: Dartmouth, Noon Video * / Gametracker / @NIUScores
Sunday: Minnesota, 3:15 p.m. Audio (free)/Video * / Gametracker / @NIUScores
* - Subscription required
NORTHERN ILLINOIS PROJECTED PITCHING ROTATION
Day/Pitcher Last Start
Friday: LHP Jordan Ruckman (0-2) (L vs Nevada) 4.2 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 3 BB, 1 K
Saturday: RHP Eli Anderson (1-1) (W vs Nevada) 5.1 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 3 BB, 2 K
Sunday: RHP Alex Klonowski (0-2) (L vs Nevada) 7.1 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 BB, 6 K
OPPONENTS PROJECTED PITCHING ROTATION
Day/Pitcher Last start
Friday (Utah): RHP Brock Duke (1-0) (ND vs UC Davis) 6.0 IP, 10 H, 5 R, 2 BB, 4 K
Saturday (Dartmouth): LHP Kyle Hunter (0-0) First start
Sunday (Minnesota): LHP Jordan Jess (1-1) (W vs W. Michigan) 6.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 7 K
• The Huskies win at Nevada Saturday afternoon was their first in February since 2009.
• NIU has played six games in the Metrodome, all versus Minnesota.
• Northern Illinois will have its first ever meeting versus Dartmouth and Utah.
• The Huskies have played 11 true freshman this season and three junior college transfers and are one of 11 teams (291 teams in Division I) to play at least 10 true freshmen.
THE YOUTH OF NORTHERN ILLINOIS
The Huskies are 1-of-12 teams in NCAA Division I to have played at least 10 true freshmen this season. Overall NIU has played 14 first year players, five of which have started in the lineup, with three junior transfers also appearing in games for Northern Illinois. Those amongst the Huskies age are Alabama, Florida, Stony Brook and Tennessee.
BACK IN THE BIG LEAGUES
Though the Minnesota Twins now play at Target Field, Northern Illinois will play its first baseball game in a Major League Baseball stadium since playing UW-Milwaukee at Miller Park in 2010. The Huskies are 1-1 in Major League Baseball stadiums, defeating the Panthers in 2010 and falling to Notre Dame at U.S. Cellular Field in 2008.
NIU has combined for an 11-46 record since 2003. All-time, Northern Illinois is 18-56 during the month. The Huskies best outing in February was a 4-2 showing in 2004. However, NIU has predominantly played the toughest part of their schedule in February, taking on the likes of Arizona State, Missouri, Mississippi State and Texas Tech amongst others.
WELLS INCHING CLOSER
Senior Jamison Wells (Combined Locks, Wis./Kimberly) is inching closer to breaking the all-time stolen bases record at Northern Illinois with 66 in his career. So far this season, the NIU center fielder has two and has averaged 26 the last two seasons. Alvin Maynard (1979-80) set the record in his two seasons with 71.
ANDERSON FOR THE WIN
Junior Eli Anderson (Glenview/New Trier) earned his first win of 2013 in game two of Saturday’s doubleheader at Nevada February 23 as NIU dominated, 12-4. Anderson hurled 5.1 innings on the bump and only surrendered two runs in the contest with two strikeouts. The victory was his second as a starter and the third of his career.
FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING
Northern Illinois will take on Dartmouth and Utah for the first time ever this weekend. The Utes are the sole Pac-12 team on NIU’s schedule this season.
Junior Alex Klonowski (Kearney, Mo./Kearney) had a career-day in only his third start of his career on the mound in the series finale at Nevada last Sunday. Klonowski totaled 7.1 innings of work with six strikeouts on 101 pitches (68 strikes), all career-highs. He carried a no-hitter through four innings and had only surrendered one run through seven. At the plate, he was 5-for-15 (.333) with four RBI.
THE LOCAL POWER COMPANY
Freshman Brian Sisler (DeKalb/DeKalb) hit his first collegiate home run February 23 in game two of the Huskies doubleheader at Nevada, a three-run shot over left field, to lead NIU to a five run inning. Northern Illinois has hit one other homerun this season, with Micah McCulloch (Rochelle/Rochelle Township) accounting for the other versus Northern Colorado February 17. NIU is located in DeKalb, Ill., while Rochelle is only 17 miles West of campus.
A FAMILIAR CONFERENCE
Each of the last five seasons, including 2013, Northern Illinois has taken on at least one opponent from the Pac-12. Against nationally ranked Arizona State teams the last two years, the Huskies have lost two one-run games to the Sun Devils, dropping a 4-3 decision last year and a 10-9 game in 2011. NIU is 0-12 all-time against the Pac-12.
NORTHERN ILLINOIS AND THE IVY LEAGUE
No stranger to Ivy League competition, NIU will take on an Ancient Eight school for the first-time in 12 seasons, its third such opponent of all-time. Northern Illinois is 1-3 against the Ivy League. Yale was the Huskies last Ancient Eight opponent, a 5-3 win over the Bulldogs in 2002. NIU lost to Penn in 2000 and 2001.
Next week Northern Illinois will begin its annual spring break trip, where in its 10 day quest it will travel from DeKalb, Ill. to Nashville, Tenn., and back. NIU will cover 1,144 miles on the road. The Huskies will open with its annual series at Southern Illinois, followed by a two-game series against Murray State and closing it all at Belmont in the Music City Tournament in Nashville, Tenn. NIU will play eight games in 10 day.
40 YEARS LATER
In March 1973, the Huskies went on their spring break trip to take on Belmont, Lipscomb, Middle Tennesse and Vanderbilt. This year, NIU will again head to Nashville, Tenn. to take on Belmont and Lipscomb.
BIGGEST LITTLE CITY REVIEW
Northern Illinois played a four game series at Nevada last weekend where the Huskies finished 1-3 to earn their first win in the month of February since 2009. NIU dominated in its victory over the Wolf Pack with 19 hits to its credit en route to a 12-4 victory. The Huskies nearly split the series on Sunday as they were deadlocked 1-1 in the eighth inning. Nevada’s Kewby Meyer hit a two-run homer in the inning to clinch the win and the series, 3-1.
SCOUTING THE UTES
Utah owns a 4-3 record this season after two trips to the Sunshine State in which it played Loyola Marymount and UC Davis. The Utes won the four-game series over the Aggies last weekend, 3-1. Offensively the team has scored 40 runs with infielder TJ Bennett contributing seven to compliment his .417 average. Tanner Banks is the ace on the hill with a 1-1 record and an ERA of 1.88 in 14.1 innings. Utah specializes in the long ball with six home runs hit already this season, with Bennett and AJ Young leading the Utes with two.
SCOUTING THE BIG GREEN
Dartmouth will open its season this weekend per Ivy League Athletic and academic regulations. The Big Green are coming off a 24-18 season and a 14-6 Ancient Eight record to clinch the Red Rolfe Division Championship. Dartmouth went on to compete in the Ivy League Championship series where it lost in a three-game series with Cornell, 2-1. A walkoff homerun by the Big Red defeated the Big Green in extra innings. Dartmouth returns five of its position players, including Ivy League RBI leader Dusin Selzer. The Big Green returns 41 starts on the mound and closer Thomas Olson.
SCOUTING THE GOLDEN GOPHERS
Dairy Queen Classic host Minnesota, like Utah, owns a 5-3 record this season after series with No. 2 UCLA and Western Michigan. The Golden Gophers opened their season with a 6-2 victory over UCLA in 10 innings. UM scored four runs in the 10th to clinch the victory over the Bruins. Michael Handel has been the main guy at the plate for Minnesota with a .423 average, two doubles and a triple to his credit. On the mound, Tom Windle has been nearly unhittable. In his two starts and 9.1 innings on the mound, he’s only surrendered six hits and has yet to give up a single run.