Pioneering Superregional Team Seeks Return Trip to College World Series | Latest News, Sports Updates, Employment Opportunities

The Marietta College baseball team is on the verge of returning to the Division III College World Series, despite losing several key pitchers from last year’s team. The Pioneers have a 37-11 record and swept the regional tournament last week. Marietta will host Misericordia in a best-of-three superregional for a chance to advance to the championship tournament, with the series starting on Friday at Don and Sue Shirley Field at Pioneer Park.

Marietta head coach Brian Brewer has relied heavily on two-way players Brett Carson and Trent Valentine to get the team to where they are today. Carson leads the team with a .424 batting average and 12 home runs, and also has a 5-2 record with a 1.95 ERA and 64 strikeouts in 50 innings pitched. Valentine, meanwhile, is 7-0 with a 3.39 ERA and 63 strikeouts in 77 innings, and also bats .325 with two home runs and 27 RBIs.

Misericordia, coached by Pete Egbert, presents a tough challenge for Marietta with a strong lineup that includes leadoff man Garrett McIlhenny, who has a .400 batting average, five home runs, 35 RBIs, and 40 stolen bases. Conor Maliniac, Brady Madden, Derrick Bosberg, Jason Sanfilippo, and Brock Bollinger are also big threats in the Cougars lineup. The team has quality pitchers, including Tyler Leonard, David McCurry, Steve Linda, Max Oliver, and Joe Valenti.

Marietta’s lineup includes catcher Ben Kaplin, first baseman Austin Umbersey, shortstop Matthew Busby, third baseman Nick Bonizio, outfielders Ty Davis, Cole Yeager, and Trent Valentine, and pitcher Kyle Hill. The Pioneers have occasionally had fielding issues this season but made just three errors in regional tournaments. Brewer emphasizes the importance of taking care of the baseball and playing to the team’s strengths to limit the other team’s ability to apply pressure.

Playing these games at home gives Marietta a significant advantage, thanks to the support of the fans and the familiarity of the field and sleeping in their own beds. Brewer notes that Marietta is a great baseball city filled with good people who have supported the team for over 60 years.

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