NASHVILLE, Tenn. – 33 home games including the first eight of the season at Dugan Field highlight the 2012 Lipscomb baseball schedule announced this week by head baseball coach Jeff Forehand.
The 55-game slate features six opponents that made the 2011 NCAA Tournament and 30 Atlantic Sun contests. Lipscomb opens the season hosting the inaugural “Mule Mix” classic alongside Belmont and Middle Tennessee State as Evansville, St. Louis and Kansas come to the “Music City” for the round-robin tournament.
“Every year we try to have games at home early against some good schools and I think we’ve accomplished that again this year,” said Forehand.
A three-game set against Kent State, an NCAA participant in 2011, awaits next on the schedule for the Bisons before Lipscomb closes out February and the eight-game homestand against Tennessee Tech.
Lipscomb hits the road for the first time in 2012 on the first weekend of March with a trip to Starkville, Miss., to take on Connecticut, a No. 2 seed in last year’s NCAA tourney and Mississippi State at Dudy Noble Field.
“The chance to play UConn twice and Mississippi State twice will be very competitive for us and something I think our guys look forward to in playing in that atmosphere,” said Forehand. “It also gets us prepared for the Atlantic Sun.”
The Bisons return to Dugan Field after the trip to the “Magnolia State” for three-game sets against San Diego and Siena. The squad then hits the road to South Carolina for a non-conference tilt against Wofford before opening A-Sun play at USC Upstate.
A Tuesday-night home game awaits the Bisons return to Nashville as Austin Peay, who reached the NCAA’s after winning the Ohio Valley Conference tournament crown.
“Our midweek games are against the usual suspects around here which everybody knows baseball in these parts are pretty good,” said Forehand. “When you sandwich those first weekends in with the teams that we typically play in the middle of the week, it makes for a really good non-conference schedule. “
After the mid-week tilt with the Govs, Lipscomb hosts Mercer to open A-Sun play at home before heading back on the road for contests at UT-Martin and Evansville. ETSU then comes to town to wrap up the month of March.
The Purple and Gold continue home A-Sun play to open April with a series against Kennesaw State and a non-conference battle with UT-Martin. Back-to-back trips to the “Sunshine State” sandwiched with a home midweek contest against Western Kentucky follows, as Lipscomb makes the trek to North Florida and Stetson in consecutive weekends.
The Bisons then make the return trip to Western Kentucky to take on the Hilltoppers before returning home to host Campbell and Florida Gulf Coast at Dugan Field. A midweek contest at Austin Peay hails next before Jacksonville comes to Nashville for the final home games of the campaign.
Lipscomb wraps up 2012 with a midweek contest at Tennessee Tech before ending the regular season at rival Belmont. The 2012 A-Sun Tournament returns to DeLand, Fla., after the 2011 event was held on the Lipscomb campus.