UConn, Central Connecticut State selected for NCAA Baseball Tournament
(WFSB) - The UConn Huskies and the Central Connecticut State Blue Devils are getting ready for the upcoming NCAA Division 1 Baseball Tournament.
Both schools found out Monday who and where they are playing.
UConn will be playing in Gainesville, Florida for the first weekend of the tournament.
The Huskies, who lost in the Big East Conference final, have made this tournament because of their overall play this season, which has been sensational.
UConn basketball has already proven you don’t need to be conference champions to win the national championship.
“There’s a precedent set. You just look down Jim Calhoun Way and you see the guys who won a national championship. Nobody remembers they didn’t win the Big East. I’m sure they remember but it’s not talked about all that much,” said Jim Penders, UConn Baseball Head Coach.
At Central Connecticut, the excitement for the Northeast Conference regular season and conference tournament champions continues as the Blue Devils found out their assignment is against the University of South Carolina.
“This is where the big dogs show up, we’ve got to play our best baseball and hope for the best,” said Elliott Good, CCSU Shortstop.
“It’s this type of success that provides confidence for NCAA play,” said Hunter Pasqualini, CCSU Outfielder. “We have a lot of depth on this team pitching, hitting fielding everyone has stepped up. As the season has gone along we’ve gotten better and better as a team.”
Both UConn and Central have had tremendous seasons, winning their conference regular season championships.
Central won the postseason tournament too.
UConn finished a gutsy #2 in the Big East tournament while the Blue Devils took the NEC regular season and tournament crowns.
UConn will open against Texas Tech. The schools played a couple of years ago during the regular season, and UConn had some tough luck, which the Huskies haven’t forgotten.
“We were swept a couple of years ago by Texas Tech in four games so that should be a little extra motivation for our guys. We’ve never competed with an SEC school since I’ve been here, so it should be exciting,” said David Smith, UConn Infielder/Outfielder.
Central will open with the host University of South Carolina, from the powerful Southeastern Conference. The Blue Devils will draw on their experience playing at SEC power LSU to open the season.
“It was a great atmosphere down there, we played in front of 11,000 people great fans, which hopefully will help us relax and play the best baseball we can,” said Charlie Hickey, CCSU Baseball Head Coach.
The winner of the Gainesville Regional will meet the winner of the South Carolina Regional. Wouldn’t it be something if UConn and Central Battled in Super Regional?
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