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Govs final homestand opens with Tuesday tilt against WKU

APSU BaseballClarksville, TN – On Tuesday, May 14th, the Austin Peay State University (APSU) baseball team opens its regular-season ending four-game homestand against Western Kentucky at 6:00pm on the Joe Maynard Field at Raymond C. Hand Park.

Austin Peay Baseball begins final regular season four game homestand Tuesday when the Govs host Western Kentucky. (APSU Sports Information) [1]

Austin Peay Baseball begins final regular season four game homestand Tuesday when the Govs host Western Kentucky. (APSU Sports Information)

The Governors enter the midweek outing looking to build on their finest offensive weekend of the season.

Austin Peay scored 48 runs in its three-game sweep at Eastern Illinois last weekend, one run shy of the program record for scoring in a three-game series. The weekend included a program-record 34-hit outing in a 29-5 Game 2 victory.

WKU visits Clarksville to end a four-game road trip that opened with it dropping a three-game Conference USA series at Louisiana Tech, 2-1. The Hilltoppers are 6-2 against Ohio Valley Conference opponents this season, including an earlier loss to Austin Peay in Bowling Green, Kentucky.

Tuesday’s contest will feature two of Division I’s top home run hitters. Governors outfielder Parker Phillips [2] and Hilltoppers outfielder Jake Sanford are each tied for fifth with 21 home runs entering the week. 

First Hacks

Since its series loss at Eastern Kentucky, April 5-6, Austin Peay has posted a 14-5 record with the offense batting an impressive .336 and averaging 9.1 runs per game.

Senior catcher David Martinez’ [3] .351 batting average is 15th among NCAA catchers (118th overall) and sixth among all OVC hitters.

Center fielder Garrett Spain [4] reached base in the first 43 games of his collegiate career – the third longest streak in APSU history. His .340 batting average ranks 17th and his 46 RBI ranks 11th among Division I freshmen.

Junior right fielder Parker Phillips [2] hit his 20th home run of 2019 at Tennessee, May 7, breaking the APSU single-season record he set last season. Currently, his 21 home runs are ranked fifth nationally and he ranks 24th among Division I hitters with an OVC-best 58 RBI.

Phillips is the sixth hitter in OVC history to hit 50 or more home runs, entering the week with 52 career homers.

Freshman designated hitter Matt Joslin [5] continues to be the right man in the right spot in 2019. He is batting .692 with 20 RBI in 14 bases-loaded opportunities this season, including a walk-off grand slam against Southern Illinois, April 16th.

Senior outfielder Aaron Campbell [7] was named the OVC Player of the Week, Monday, after leading the Govs with a .692 (9-13) batting average, five doubles, a home run and 10 RBI in four games.

In the 19 games since April 12th, Campbell leads the Govs with a .453 batting average (29-64), including 11 doubles and his first two homers as a Gov.

Freshman third baseman Gino Avros [8] has a hit in 14 of his last 19 games, batting .333 (25-75) with 22 runs scored. He has pushed his average up 81 points thanks to the burst.

Redshirt senior shortstop Garrett Kueber [9] has seven multi-hit outings in his last 12 games. He is batting .434 (20-46) with two home runs, seven RBI and 16 runs scored.

Junior utility man Malcolm Tipler [10] went 6-for-12 with six RBI during the Eastern Illinois series. It was his best offensive series this season.

Senior catcher Alex Sala [11] has hit a home run in each of his last two official at-bats. He is batting .368 (7-19) with three extra base hits in his last six starts.

Sophomore first baseman John McDonald [12] started all three games of the Eastern Illinois series. He went 4-for-6 with two doubles in Game 2 of the series.

Toeing The Rubber

Left-hander Nolan Monaghan [13] will make his fifth midweek start this season. He is 1-2 with a 6.92 ERA, striking out 19 batters in 13 innings, over his four previous starts.

Austin Peay’s 461 strikeouts ranks as third-most in program history, six strikeouts shy of breaking the program record of 466 Ks set in 2013 and 2017.

Since the EKU series loss, the Govs pitching staff has posted a 5.03 ERA, limited opponents to a .247 batting average and allowed only 5.5 runs per game.

Govs vs. Hilltoppers

Austin Peay won the season’s first meeting between the two teams, 5-3, March 19th in Bowling Green.

The Govs used a four-run fifth inning, aided by two bases loaded HBPs, to turn the tide.

The Govs last swept the home-and-home season series against the Hilltoppers in 2013.

WKU holds a 94-64-1 lead in the all-time series. APSU has won four of the last five meetings in the series, including this season’s earlier victory.

Pitching Matchups

Date Austin Peay Starter Opposing Starter
Tue., 5/14 LHP Nolan Monaghan [13] (1-2, 8.05) RHP Jeff Ciocco (0-1, 4.86)