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SERIES CAPSULE: FAU vs Towson - February 23rd - 25th, 2024

What: FAU (1-2) vs. Towson (1-3)

When: Fri, Feb. 23rd @ 6:30 PM
           Sat, Feb. 24th @ 4:00 PM
           Sun, Feb. 25th @ 12:00 PM

Where: FAU Baseball Stadium

Video: FAU TV

Live Stats: Here

Towson Team Site: Here

Series: Tied 1-1 all-time. First series between the two teams since 2013.

Projected Starting Pitchers:

TOW - Nate Nabholz (0-0, 4.50 ERA)
FAU - RHP CJ Williams (0-0, 21.00 ERA)

TOW - Brett Seils (0-1, 27.00 ERA)
FAU - LHP Trey Beard (0-0, 4.91 ERA)

TOW - Max Simpson (0-1, 1.80 ERA)
FAU - RHP Tyler Murphy (0-0, 0.00 ERA)

Owl Notables

It wasn't surprising to see a nationally-ranked Vanderbilt win the series against FAU. What was very interesting was the way the Owls fiercely competed in two of those three games, even with a heavily retooled roster.

There was the expected suspect in John Schroeder (pictured below via Rick Henderson), who shined as the team's best hitter against the Commodores' bullpen. In 12 at-bats, he made five hits including four doubles for two RBIs.

Then there were the newcomers who stood out in the series, particularly shortstop Brando Leroux and designated hitter Emilio Gonzalez. Leroux launched the team's first home run of the season to give them the lead before Vanderbilt proceeded to get the walk-off victory last Friday. Gonzalez had a significant at-bat on Friday, that saw him hit an excellent double that brought home three of FAU's runners to begin their rally. Keep an eye on these two for this week's series.

FAU's bullpen also had something to write home about, most notably their relievers. Bryan Boully was excellent in closing out Saturday's game to give the Owls their first win of the season, striking out six batters and allowing just one hit in 3.2 innings. Danny Trehey and Nicholas Del Prado also did well during their time on the mound, having seven strikeouts combined in four total innings.

Saturday was a solid debut for Trey Beard, only allowing two hits and two earned runs against the Commodores' batting unit in 3.2 innings. Keeping up that momentum entering this series against Towson would be a major confidence booster for the freshman pitcher.

FAU does have some injuries to manage. David Alvarez sustained an apparent leg injury during the season opener last Friday, which had him miss the rest of the series. With him having a day-to-day status, Carter Brady or Jake Millan would be expected to take over at left field until he returns. In the bullpen, Sam Drumheller didn't play against Vanderbilt as he is day-to-day with a lower body injury but is expected to return soon.

The Owls stay home as they host UCF on February 27th at 6:30 PM. The game will be broadcast on FAU TV.

The starters (in non-batting order) for game one should be that of the below:

RF Jalen DeBose
CF Spencer Rich
LF Carter Brady or Jake Millan
1B Mike La Rocca
2B Christian Adams
3B Daulton Frank
DH Emilio Gonzalez
SS Brando Leroux
C John Schroeder
P CJ Williams

Tiger Notables

There isn't a lot of expectations for Towson heading into this season, and a 1-3 start isn't much to be shocked over.

The Tigers were picked to finish 11th out of 12 teams in the Preseason Poll for the Coastal Athletic Association, coming off a 19-37 record (7-23 CAA) in the 2023 campaign. And so far, they have shown the capability to score runs while conceding runs at the same time, getting outscored by seven runs (36-29) against their opponents Wofford and Bucknell.

Jordan Peyton has been Towson's standout player to begin the campaign. He holds a .400 batting average, making six hits for seven RBI and three doubles.

Certain players to keep an eye on are infielders Casey Bishop and Bryce Frederick. Bishop led the Tigers at the plate last season, batting .325 in 209 at-bats as he tied for fifth in the league with 22 stolen bases on 23 attempts. He only has four hits in 16 at-bats, but it's best for FAU to be cautious of his ability to strike at any opportunity made available to him.

Frederick, on the other hand, is the team's home run machine. He led the Tigers with 14 home runs and 56 RBI last season, finishing with a .299 average with 16 doubles in 56 games. He has three hits for six RBI to begin the year.

After this series, the Tigers travel to North Carolina to face nationally-ranked N.C. State for three games starting March 1st at 3:30 PM EST. The series will be broadcast on ESPN+.

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