GRAND FORKS, N.D. - Assistant coaches Brian DeVillers and J.C. Field have drafted the squads and laid out their strategies for the University of North Dakota baseball team's annual Blue Moose Classic, which will feature a best-of-three format this season. First pitch is set for 1:00 p.m. Sunday at Kraft Field (weather permitting) with games two and three to be announced during the next week.
Freshman Andrew Thome (St. Cloud, Minn.) led the Black squad to the 2011 Blue Moose Classic title by picking up a pair of wins as DeVillers' squad grabbed its third title in the past four seasons. Thome earned Classic MVP honors for his efforts both on the mound and at the plate.
Field's White team boasts UND's leading power bat from a season ago, sophomore Jeff Campbell. As a rookie, the Clearwater, Fla. native earned Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-America team honors after affixing his name to the UND record book. The Great West Conference Newcomer of the Year recorded team-bests with a dozen homers, 73 hits and 47 runs batted in. His hit total is the tied for second-most by a UND player and his homer mark is tied for fourth-best by a North Dakota slugger in a single season. He also started 11 games on the hill, going 4-7 with a 6.30 earned run average.
The White team also includes Tyler Follis, who tallied the team's top batting average last year (.352) and speedster Riley Beck, who swiped nearly half of UND's total stolen bases going a perfect 18-for-18.
DeVillers' young squad is highlighted by reigning Classic MVP Thome, who was the team's top hurler a season ago. The St. Cloud, Minn. product threw a program-best 93.0 innings with a team-low 3.58 ERA and 65 strikeouts. His standout performance in the Great West tournament helped UND to a third-place finish. Thome tossed a two-hit shutout in the opening game of the tournament against NJIT, striking out nine-- including the side in the ninth inning-- to lead North Dakota to a 1-0 upset of the third-seeded Highlanders. His three shutouts tied a UND single-season record and he won four of his last five starts, posting a 0.66 ERA with 36 strikeouts in 41 innings pitched during that stretch.
Battery-mate Zack Trygstad made 47 starts a year ago, hitting .271 with 26 RBI. He was also a key cog to UND's late-season run, notching six multi-hit games over the final two weekends. He went 17-for-28 (.607) over the final seven games of the campaign, including a three-hit game in the GWC tourney against Utah Valley.
Blue Moose Classic Schedule
Game 1: Sunday, Oct. 7- 1:00 p.m. (7 innings)
Games 2-3: TBA
# Name Yr Pos B/T Ht - Wt Hometown
1 Michael Nemer FR C L/R 5-11 190 Fargo, ND (Davies HS)
3 Daniel Lockhert FR IF R/R 5-11 180 Kennet, MO
6 TJ Pigeon FR C R/R 5-10 190 Burnsville, MN
7 Tyler Ruemmele SO P/IF R/R 6-0 195 Eden Prairie, MN
8 Taylor Petersen JR C R/R 6-0 205 Atlantic, IA (Iowa Central CC)
10 Derek Hovick JR RHP R/R 6-0 190 Rochester, MN (Iowa Central CC)
11 Tyler Follis SO IF L/R 6-2 200 Bemidji, MN
14 Trent Egan SO LHP L/L 6-2 190 Valley City, ND
16 Sam Alt SO OF L/R 6-1 205 Lino Lakes, MN (Centennenial HS)
18 Brett DeGagne SO RHP R/R 6-6 235 Sauk Rapids, MN
21 Jeffrey Campbell SO P/1B R/R 6-4 225 Clearwater, FL (Clearwater Catholic)
22 Kris Kwak SR IF/OF L/R 6-3 205 Maple Grove, MN (Holy Angels Academy)
26 Patrick Riewer JR P/OF R/R 6-0 180 Wadena, MN (Ellsworth CC)
28 Riley Beck SR OF R/R 6-0 190 Munich, ND
30 Michael DeCosta FR RHP R/R 5-10 200 Norwood, MA
31 Chris Knoll SO LHP L/L 6-0 200 Minnetonka, MN (Holy Family)
36 Zach Hayes FR LHP L/L 6-5 200 Roseville, MN
27 JC Field - Coach
# Name Yr Pos B/T Ht - Wt Hometown
2 Jacob Threlkeld JR OF L/L 5-11 175 Burnsville, MN (Iowa Central CC)
4 Zack Trygstad JR C L/R 6-1 205 Wayzata, MN
5 Luis Calvo FR IF R/R 6-0 190 Tampa, FL (Brooks-DeBartolo Collegiate)
9 Pat Vandoorne SO IF L/R 5-9 180 Boissevain, MB (Valley City St)
12 Reid Jungling SO P/OF L/L 5-11 190 Mandan, ND (Univ of Mary)
13 Mark Bearmon SO OF L/R 5-11 190 St Louis Park, MN
15 Matt Schmit JR RHP R/R 6-4 220 Quenn Creek, AZ (Chandler-Gilbert CC)
17 Pete Gagne SR LHP L/L 5-11 175 Bloomingotn, MN (Cretin-Derham Hall)
19 Andrew Thome SO RHP R/R 6-4 210 St Cloud, MN (Cathedral HS)
20 Jake Swift SR RHP R/R 6-0 190 Phoenix, AZ (Paradise Valley CC)
23 Matt Wehrli SO OF R/R 6-0 200 Phoenix, AZ (Chandler-Gilbert CC)
24 Ben Clark SO LHP R/L 6-2 180 White Bear Lake, MN
25 Andrew Favaro FR RHP R/R 6-3 200 Golden Valley, MN
32 AJ Anderson FR RHP R/R 6-5 230 Alexandria, MN
33 Brock Johnson SO RHP R/R 6-6 220 Detroit Lakes, MN
34 Ryan Reese SO IF L/R 6-0 200 Lino Lakes, MN (Iowa Central CC)
38 Alex Twenge SO P/UT L/R 6-3 235 Minnetonka, MN
35 Brian DeVillers-Coach