03/02/2011 – Turks Tidbits
Written By Casey Zeiders James Madison University Sports Management Intern
HARRISONBURG – Light up the grill, oil your mitt, and grab yourself a box of Cracker Jacks because it’s baseball season again! Well maybe it doesn’t quite feel like it yet in the Good ‘Ol Friendly City, but the season is finally among us.
Major League pitchers and catchers reported to camp on February 13 and the college baseball season officially kicked off two weeks ago. College baseball season starting means one thing… more PING, one of the most recognizable sounds in sports.
While the Harrisonburg Turks are getting ready for another exciting season, their players are getting into the full swing of the college baseball season. From Freshman to Seniors, all of their players seem to be primed for a great season. Two weeks into the season and several of the Turks players have stood out and put on some tremendous performances for their respected colleges.
Duke Freshman Chris Marcontini has been enormous for the Blue Devils this year. Marcontini is leading his team with 13 RBIs and is tied for second in runs scored with eight. He is currently batting .400 with three triples on the year as well. In his first game with the Blue Devils, Marcontini drove in the tying and go-ahead runs with a two-out, two-strike single in the bottom of the ninth inning to help beat Richmond 6-5. He finished with 3 RBIs in the game and scored once to account for four of Duke’s six runs.
Dodson McPherson for Wingate University has been playing at a high level as well. The Junior outfielder was named to the First Team 2011 South Atlantic Conference Preseason All-Conference Team. Two weeks into the season he has not disappointed. He is batting .321 through 20 games, with three triples and two home runs to go along with his 21 RBIs. In a double header against Augusta State University, McPherson had five hits, seven RBIs. In the two games, he went five-for-seven with a grand slam and a triple.
Justin Somers, also of Wingate University is having a huge year as well. In 12.2 innings this season he is 2-1 to go along with five saves in nine appearances. His saves and appearances are first and second respectively in the South Atlantic Conference. He is holding opposing batters to a 1.42 ERA and a .133 batting average. Somers also has 20 strikeouts on 45 at-bats.
James Madison’s own Tyler McFarland has seen action at pitcher and designated hitter. McFarland has posted a .417 batting average to go along with nine RBIs and four doubles. As a pitcher, he has fanned six batters in six innings of work.
Appalachian State’s Lawrence Pardo is pitching exceptionally for the Mountaineers this year. He is 1-0 with a 0.82 ERA in eleven innings of work this season. He has eight strikeouts this season with only one earned run on 42 at-bats. He is presently holding opponents to a .214 batting average.
Freshman All-American Pat Christensen on La Salle University has begun his terror on teams this season. Before the season started, Christensen was named to the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) Preseason Stopper of the Year watch list after a tremendous freshman season. This year has been no different; he has recorded 4 punch-outs and a stunning 0.00 ERA in 3.1 innings.
Many Turks have been making their mark all over college baseball this season. Even though it is only two weeks into the season, our players have been putting on a show for their respected colleges. No matter the position, the Turks have players getting national recognition each week and only seem to be getting better. So, as the season goes on be on the look out for these players, as well as, our other 31 other players because they are sure to make some noise.