AUGUSTA, Ga. -- After reconstructing the roster since his tenure began in 2010, Augusta State Head Baseball Coach Chris Cooper looks to the 2013 season as a launching point for brand new talent when the Jaguars host Carson-Newman on Friday, Feb. 1 at Lake Olmstead Stadium.
The Diamond Jaguars, who are looking to rebound from a 13-37 record in 2012, open the season with a single game on Friday at 2:00 p.m. against the Eagles and the teams conclude the three-game series with a doubleheader on Saturday, Feb. 2 at noon.
ASU has opened its season against Carson-Newman every year dating back to the 1998 season, where the Jags took three of four from the Eagles in two weekend doubleheaders. Since the '98 season, ASU is 29-23 against the Eagles, only allowing one series sweep in 2009.
Last season, the Jags took the weekend at LOS 2-1, winning the opener on Friday and splitting the two games on Saturday. ASU claimed a 7-2 win in the final game on Jeff Rice's three-run homer.
The ASU bullpen looks to veteran leadership this season from right-hander's Scott Shipman, Dylan Wall, Tyler Ross, and Aaron Lewis. Junior Clint Echols will also be a pivotal piece of the rotation -- making 20 starts last season -- as will the new cast of freshmen and transfers.
Shipman led the Jags to the 2011 Peach Belt Conference Tournament championship game for the first time in school history and was named a first-team All-Southeast Region selection by the NCBWA (National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association).
Senior first baseman/designated hitter Seth Foster returns as the Jags' top hitter from a season ago, while Rice is back for his third season as a regular and the team's top home run hitter from 2012. ASU returns 11 position players and six starters, along with nine returning pitchers. The 2013 roster also features 16 newcomers who will all vie for playing time
The three-game set with Carson-Newman kicks off a 50-game schedule where the Jags will play 27 homes games, including 19 at Lake Olmstead Stadium.