Opening night pitcher Austin Gomber will get the start on Friday against Alabama. (OwlAccess.com file photo)
Tide in town
Alabama comes to Boca Raton this weekend likely looking for payback for the Owls season-opening sweep a year ago.
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A year ago Florida Atlantic opened its baseball season with sweep over Alabama.
FAU coach John McCormack knows the Crimson Tide, whose logo features an elephant, have not forgotten that weekend.
“Alabama knows exactly what they are in for so we have got to be ready,” McCormack said. “They are coming down here with something to prove.”
Last year's sweep alerted the nation to the fact the FAU had a pretty good ball club – one that would
go on the win the Sun Belt Conference regular season title.
Those early-season victories over Alabama gave the Owls a level of confidence they carried with them all season.
“When you beat a big-name team like that you realize you have a chance to do big things,” right fielder Corey Keller said.
FAU began 2013 with a sweep of Cincinnati, then had the chance for another early-season impact victory on Wednesday against Miami, but the Owls let a late two-run lead slip away and ultimately lost in extra innings.
McCormack called the loss “extremely disappointing,” but realizes his Owls must quickly regain their focus for the weekend series.
“It's not like we can call them up and say 'don't come,'” McCormack said. “You can't do that. They'll be here.”
Alabama (4-0, 0-0 SEC)
at FAU (3-1, 0-0 Sun Belt)
- When: Friday, 6:30 p.m., Saturday 4 p.m., Sunday 1 p.m..
- Where: FAU Baseball Stadium, Boca Raton, Fl.
- Radio: None
- Streaming audio: FAUSports.com,
- Scouting the opponent: RollTide.com
- Featured hot dog: Mexican Dog (cheese, salsa and hot peppers)
Pitching Probables: Friday – Ala RHP Charley Sullivan (0-0, 6.23) vs. FAU LHP Austin Gomber (1-0, 3.00); Saturday – Ala LHP Jon Keller (0-0, 6.75) vs. RHP Jake Meiers (1-0, 3.60); Sunday RHP Spencer Turnbull (0-0, 2.75) vs. FAU RHP Jeremy Strawn (0-0, 3.00)
About the Crimson Tide: Alabama opened the season with a three-game sweep of VMI, then beat Southern Mississippi on Tuesday. ...Catcher Brett Booth is 7-for-11 on the season with a home run and 6 RBI. ...Alabama has a team ERA of 3.75.
About the Owls: Corey Keller has 9 hits on the season and sports a .474 batting average. ...Newcomers Levi Meyer and Tyler Rocklein lead FAU with 4 RBI apiece. The pair have one homer each, the only long balls for FAU. ...Friday starter Austin Gomber allowed two runs in six innings and earned the win in the season opener. ..Saturday starter Jake Meiers allowed one run over six innings to Alabama in the same role last season.