With majority of team back, the baseball Bobcats have high expectations in 2018


Season opener set for Saturday on Florida trip

BUCKHANNON – With the return of a large portion of the 2017 roster that saw them finish third in the Mountain East Conference Tournament, West Virginia Wesleyan’s Bobcats are ready to get the 2018 campaign underway.

Offensively the ‘Cats have a load of experience.

Providing the senior leadership are shortstop Wyatt Adkins, second baseman Greg Smith and infielder Travis Renner.

Returning juniors include third baseman Antonio Vega, outfielder Alex Skinner, catcher Dominic Casteello, outfielder Dylan Frye and first baseman Ryan Kiser.

Sophomores back are outfielder-catcher Eric Forbrick, first baseman-designated hitter Kyle Kania and outfielder-designated hitter Kolby Wolf.

“Some talented freshmen look to make contributions early in their careers,” Bobcat associate head coach Brett Ripley said. “They include catcher Adrian Delgado, outfielder Bryson Fluke, infielder Josh Petit, utility Nick Grotti and first baseman-designated hitter Josh Jano.”

Smith is the top returning hitter, coming off a .341 season. Forbrick (.335) is the only other .300 batter back. Some of the others with 2017 averages above the .200 mark are Vega (.286), Kiser (.273), Castello (.270), Adkins (.250) and Rotarius (.229)

“The pitching staff will be led by seniors Chris Metrick and Riley Metz,” Ripley said. “Chris returns as the closer, needing only two saves to break the school career record, and he has been named to the NCBWA pre-season All-America second team.

“Senior Sean Cliff, along with juniors Jake Bishop and Hunter Rotarius look to build off strong campaigns last spring.

“Sophomores looking to make a big impact at the varsity level include Julio Medina, Alex Wall, Ryan Reicoff and Griffin Roe.

“Freshmen Connor Scheitzach, Jake Hakey, David McLeod and Logan Brouwer all have a chance to see varsity innings.”

Metrick was 6-0, with eight saves last year, and a stingy 1.85 earned-run-average. Bishop was 4-6 and Rotarius was 4-3.

“We are excited about the potential of the upcoming season,” Ripley remarked. “We start our season with a strong spring break schedule at Winter Haven (Fla.) March 3-10. We are looking forward to getting on the field and preparing for our Mountain East Conference schedule.”

The ‘Cats will get the season under way Saturday, facing the Davenport (Mich.) Panthers.

2018 SCHEDULE

Spring Break – Florida

March 3 – vs. Davenport, 2:30.

March 4 – vs. Findlay (Ohio), doubleheader, 9 a.m.

March 5 – vs. Minnesota-Duluth, 6:30 p.m.

March 6 – vs. Ashland, 2:30 p.m.; vs. Minnesota-Duluth, 6 p.m.

March 7 – vs. Malone, 9 a.m.

March 8 – vs. Ashland, doubleheader, 1:15 p.m.

March 9 – vs. Tiffin (Ohio), 9 a.m.

March 10 – vs. Saint Anselm, 9 a.m.; vs. Malone, 1 p.m.

Mountain East Conference

March 17 – Shepherd, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

March 18 – Fairmont State, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

March 22 – Salem International, 6 p.m.

March 24 – at Wheeling Jesuit, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

March 25 – at West Liberty, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

March 30 – Urbana (Ohio), doubleheader, 1 p.m.

March 31 – Notre Dame (Ohio), doubleheader, 1 p.m.

April 3 – at Ohio Valley, 3 p.m.

April 7 – at Charleston, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

April 8 – at Charleston, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

April 10 – Ohio Valley, 3 p.m.

April 14 – Concord, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

April 15 – Concord, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

April 18 – Davis & Elkins, 6 p.m.

April 21 – at West Virginia State, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

April 22 – at West Virginia State, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

April 25 – at Davis & Elkins, 3 p.m.

April 28 – Virginia-Wise, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

April 29 – Virginia-Wise, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

May 4 – Glenville State, doubleheader 1 p.m.

May 6 – at Glenville State, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

JUNIOR VARSITY SCHEDULE

Mach 3 – vs. Husson, 2 p.m.

March 4 – vs. Mount Union, 2:30 p.m.

March 6 – vs. John Carroll, 6 p.m.

March 7 – vs.Findlay, 1 p.m.

March 9 – vs. St. Cloud Tech Community College, 12:30 p.m.

March 10 – vs. Christ School, 9:45 a.m.

March 14 – Allegany College of Maryland, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

March 28 – Allegany College of Maryland, doubleheader, 1 p.m.

           


Video News
More In Sports