As the saying goes, this isn’t their first rodeo.
The Wright State-Lake baseball team hopes to convert the experience gained from last year’s national tournament into some victories in this year’s event.
The Lakers will make their second consecutive trip to the United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA) national tournament May 15–18 at East Field Park in Glens Falls, New York.
Wright State-Lake Campus, the No. 3 seed in the 10-team double-elimination tournament, opens play Monday, May 15, at 9 p.m. against No. 6 seed Penn State-Du Bois.
The Lakers were 24–16 overall during the regular season. That record included victories over foes from NCAA Division II (Urbana), NCAA Division III (Wilmington) and the NAIA.
Last year, Wright State-Lake lost its first two tournament games, to Cincinnati-Clermont and Penn State-Du Bois, and was eliminated.
Sophomore center fielder and cleanup hitter Tristan Becker leads the Lakers with a .380 batting average, .466 on-base percentage and .521 slugging percentage. Sophomore infielder Connor Burr, the No. 3 hitter, is batting .333 and leading the team in doubles (nine) and stolen bases (22).
Sophomore right-hander Quintin Cantelli holds the unique distinction of leading the team in both home runs (three) and saves (four), playing first and third base while not pitching. Cantelli has worked 10 scoreless innings of relief, striking out 13 and walking two.
Sophomore right-hander Dan Borchers (4–2, 3.28) and freshman right-hander Carson Schuman (4–4, 3.59) have the best ERAs among the starting pitchers, but left-hander Casey Grimm (5–2, 4.70) leads the Lakers in victories.
The remainder of the tournament field, with seedings, includes Cincinnati-Clermont (#1), defending champion College of St. Joseph’s, Vermont (#2), The Apprentice School, Virginia (#4), Cleary University, Michigan (#5), Penn State-Mont Alto (#7), Bluefield State, West Virginia (#8), Central Penn College, Pennsylvania (#9) and Marygrove College, Michigan (#10).
The USCAA membership consists of 86 small colleges, community college and branch campuses.