Gents Return to Shehee to Face Southern Utah
Wednesday, May 2, 2007

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Maldonado leads the Gents
in hitting in Mid-Con play this season


(20-23, 3-5 Mid-Con)



(10-36, 5-7 Mid-Con)


May 4-6, 2007

Shehee Stadium

Shreveport, La.



Centenary (20-23, 3-5) opens the home portion of the Mid-Continent Conference schedule this weekend, hosting Southern Utah (10-36, 5-7) in a four-game series at Shehee Stadium.


The series gets underway with a single game Friday at 6 p.m. The two teams play a Saturday doubleheader, starting at 3 p.m., with the series finale scheduled for noon Sunday.



In last weekend’s series at Western Illinois, Centenary fielded a new batting order, seemingly moving those players who previously were at the bottom of the order to the top.


In the first three spots of the new batting order are Teddy Saenz, Nate Santiago and Alex Maldonado, all of who previously hit in the five spot or below this season.


Saenz, a junior infielder, has picked up his hittng of late, batting .379 in eight conference games this season. He is tied for the team lead in hits in Mid-Con games, leading the Gents with seven runs scored.  Saenz now stands as the overall leader in batting for the Gents with a .329 average.


Maldonado leads the team in batting in conference games this season. Hitting .400 in eight conference games, Maldonado has a team-leading .531 on-base percentage in Mid-Con games. The junior catcher has raised his average in overall games to .284 with his recent surge at the plate.


Senior outfielder Matt Webb and junior Calvin Sanchez continue to bat over .300 with .317 and .313 averages, respectively.


Junior infielder Cameron Penney leads the Gents with 50 hits, batting .303 with 28 RBI in a consistent effort all season.


Since entering conference play, Centenary is hitting .262 as a team.



Senior left-hander Brandon Fulenchek and the Centenary pitching staff prepare to open up Mid-Con games at Shehee Stadium this weekend against Southern Utah.


Fulenchek continues to excel in his senior season. Leading the conference with seven wins and 78.0 innings pitched, the senior lefty has a 3.00 ERA in 12 starts. Fulenchek has not lost in his last five starts, holding opponents to a .269 batting average and registering 44 strikeouts.


Junior Jeremy Sheehan has a 3.95 ERA and a 6-4 record. In 11 starts, Sheehan has been a part of two shutouts for the Gents, pitching two complete games this season.


Johnny Noland, although 1-6 this season in eight starts, was strong in his last start. Taking the field Sunday against Western Illinois, Noland allowed just two hits and one unearned run. He has a 5.44 ERA and is holding opponents to a .263 batting average.


Senior Will Kaage has a 2-5 record in 10 starts, standing with a 7.27 ERA.


In the pen, freshman Dakota Robinson leads the conference in appearances with 21. Appearing in three of the four games against Western Illinois, Robinson has a 2-3 record and a 4.68 ERA, striking out 22 with only five walks.


Junior right-hander Aaron Bronson is tied for second in the Mid-Con in saves with four. In 18 appearances, Bronson has a 1-2 record with a 5.04 ERA.


Sophomore Derek Bross (0-1, 5.40) and senior David McElroy (0-0, 6.66) also made appearances in relief last weekend against Western Illinois.


The Gents boast a 4.80 team ERA in overall games.



Centenary junior pitcher Jeremy Sheehan was named Mid-Con Pitcher of the Week for the second times this season, announced by the conference office Monday.


Honored for his performance against Western Illinois Saturday, Sheehan picked up his sixth win of the season and second shutout of the year this past weekend. In seven innings, Sheehan struck out six without allowing a run to help lead the Gents to a 5-0 win.


Sheehan is only the second pitcher in the league to earn pitcher of the week honors on multiple occasions this season.



Having one of the best offensive weekends of any Centenary player this season, senior outfielder Justin Huff was named the Louisiana Sportswriters Association Player of the Week Wednesday.


Huff finished his weekend against Western Illinois with a team-leading 12 RBI and 13 total bases, batting .538 with a .500 on-base percentage.


In Friday’s 14-7 win over the Leathernecks, Huff registered the first home run of his Centenary career, hitting a grand slam to seal the Gent win. In the win, the senior outfielder went 3-for-4 from the plate with eight RBI and two runs scored.


This season, Huff is hitting .290 with 28 RBI, standing second on the team with 49 hits.



Junior infielder Cameron Penney stands as one of the hardest players in the country to strike out, according to the latest NCAA statistical report.


Penney, a native of Valley Center, Calif., has struck out just eight times in 165 at-bats, ranking No. 7 nationally in strikeout ratio (1.30). The junior continues to lead Centenary in hits with 50, batting .303 in 43 games. 



For the past three weeks, senior outfielder Matt Webb has led the nation in walks per game. The senior continues his run as the national walks leader with Wednesday’s national stat report.


Webb is drawing 1.30 walks per game to lead the nation. Once on base, the senior outfielder continues to be a threat, leading the Mid-Con with 21 stolen bases.


He has an on-base percentage of .546 to lead the Gents.


Also ranking in the national statistical report, Centenary is 23rd nationally in team stolen bases, averaging 1.91 steals per game.



Southern Utah heads into this weekend with a 3-26 record on the road in the 2007 season, sitting with a 5-7 record in Mid-Con games this season.


The Thunrderbirds are coming off a sweep of Oakland this past weekend. In the four games, Southern Utah outscored Oakland by a 54-30 margin, notching a 21-4 win Saturday.


This season, the Thunderbirds are led at the plate by Bucky Aona, who is batting .347 in 42 games. Aona has a team-leading 50 hits this season with 22 RBI and three home runs.


Behind Aona, Cameron Nelson is hitting .320, registering a team-high 29 RBI and seven home runs. A very productive hitter this season for Southern Utah, Nelson also leads the team with a .542 slugging percentage and a .403 on-base percentage. He has scored 29 runs to lead the Thunrderbirds.


On the mound, Alec Reichle has a 2-1 record in six appearances and is slated to start Game 4 of this weekend’s series. Reichle leads all SUU starters with a 2.95 ERA.


Mac Nelson has a 2-7 record in 12 appearances and a 7.09 ERA, followed by Dustin Wittwer, who is 1-6 with a 7.92 ERA.


As a team, Southern Utah has an 8.19 team ERA.



Playing 29 of 43 games thus far at Shehee Stadium, Centenary heads into this weekend with a 17-12 record at home, looking to build on that mark against Southern Utah.


In 29 home games, the Gents are hitting .311 as a team, higher than the team’s batting average in overall games (.286). Senior outfielder Matt Webb is hitting .407 in 29 home games with a team-leading 59 total bases.


On the mound, senior Brandon Fulenchek and junior Jeremy Sheehan have a combined 10-3 record, as Fulenchek leads the Gents with a 3.44 ERA in nine home starts.


The team is averaging 7.17 runs per game at Shehee Stadium, outscoring its opponents by a 208-164 margin.



Leading the Gents with a .400 average in conference games this season, junior catcher Alex Maldonado is on roll heading into this weekend’s series with Southern Utah.


Maldonado has an eight-game hitting streak, his longest of the season, leading the Gents with three doubles in conference play.


He leads the team with a .531 on-base percentage in eight Mid-Con games.



Outfielder Matt Webb’s five home runs set a new career high for the senior.


Webb hit his last home run in Centenary’s last home game, an 18-2 win over Texas College April 17. He hit two homers against nationally-ranked Arkansas March 21, registering all of his home runs at Shehee Stadium this season.



Centenary faces a very tough test, travling to conference-leading Oral Roberts for a four-game series May 11-13.


The series in Tulsa, Okla. is the final road series of the season for the Gents.