LU Blue & White World Series begins Friday

Published 9:16 am Thursday, November 10, 2016

The Longwood University baseball team is set for its annual Blue & White World Series with games to be played Friday through Sunday at Buddy Bolding Stadium.

The three-game series will feature seven-inning intrasquad games as the Lancers prepare for the 2017 season. Games will be played Friday, with a 4 p.m. first pitch, followed by a 2 p.m. first pitch Saturday for game two and a noon start time for game three on Sunday.

Longwood Head Coach Ryan Mau is entering his third season at the helm with his Lancers coming off a 2016 season that saw the Lancers set the Division I program record with a 32-27 record, making it to the Big South Championship semifinal for the second time in the program’s history.

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The Lancers also set a program record for home wins with 21 victories at Buddy Bolding Stadium and finished in second place in the Big South standings with a 14-10 conference mark, the best in four years in the conference. The Lancers were a perfect 8-0 in the first game of each conference series, which included a win against the College World Series champion Coastal Carolina Chanticleers.

The Lancers return five of nine offensive starters, including all-conference, all-region and all-state selection Alex Lewis (.369, 5 HR, 45 RBI), all-tournament selection Michael Osinski (.305, 1 HR, 35 RBI), junior outfielder Sammy Miller (.260, 48 R, 19-23 SB), senior third baseman Brandon Harvell (30 R, 15-18 SB) and sophomore catcher Carlos Garrido (.233, 23 RBI). Longwood also returns weekend starters Steven Farkas (3-4, 4.79 ERA) and Luke Simpson (1-4, 5.30 ERA), plus valuable bullpen arms Michael Catlin (4-0, 3.00 ERA), Devin Gould (2-1, 3.10 ERA), Cody Boydstun (1-3, 3.51 ERA) and Cody Wager (3-3, 5.59).

Gould gets the start for Team White Friday opposite of Zach Potojecki for Team Blue, the home team in game one. Gould, a bullpen arm for the majority of his career and the Longwood closer at times, has made four starts in his 54 career appearances, including a start at Virginia in 2016. Potojecki started in both the weekend rotation and as a midweek starter in the first month of last season.

Saturday’s game two pits Catlin for the home standing Team White against Mitchell Kuebbing for Team Blue. Kuebbing did not pitch last season, missing the 2016 season due to injury. He returns as a redshirt junior and is expected to be a valuable part of the pitching staff.

Sunday’s finale will feature senior right-handers Wager and Tyler Wirsu (1-1, 5.49 ERA). Both junior college transfers who joined Longwood in 2016, Wager and Wirsu figure to make an impact as either starters or bullpen arms. Wirsu, going for Team Blue, will step to the mound first as the starting pitcher for the home team, as Wager will pitch for Team White in the finale.