Harris-Stowe State University will compete for the American Midwest Conference (AMC) Championship. The eight-team double-elimination tournament will have 15 games taking place from Wednesday May 3 through Saturday May 6. The Hornets are going into the tournament 30-18 overall and 15-11 in the AMC. They will be the number four seed and face fifth-seeded William Woods University Owls who are 25-28 overall and 16-13 in the AMC. The Hornets’ first game in the tournament starts on Wednesday, May 3rd, at 4:00 PM Central Daylight Time.
The tournament will take place at Freed-Hardeman University’s Carnes Field in Henderson, Tennessee. The winners advance to the championship, to be played at 1:00 PM Saturday, Sunday if necessary. The first three days of the Conference Tournament will feature four games each day,
The other qualifying Teams listed by seeding are:
No. 1 Missouri Baptist University (35-12/24-6 AMC)
No. 2 Columbia College (34-15/24-6 AMC)
No. 3 Lyon College (30-22/17-12 AMC)
No. 4 Harris-Stowe State University (30-18/15-11 AMC)
No. 5 William Woods University (25-28/16-13 AMC)
No. 6 Central Baptist College (29-22/15-13 AMC)
No. 7 Lindenwood University-Belleville (29-23/15-14 AMC)
No. 8 Freed-Hardeman University (30-21/13-15 AMC)
The two teams that make it to the championship will receive the AMC’s automatic bids to the NAIA National Championship Opening Round.
Offensively, Harris-Stowe is 10th in the nation in the NAIA in hitting with a .338 batting average. The Hornets have three players with 40 plus runs batted in. Dylan Yankle, hitting .420 with 15 doubles, 6 home runs and 40 runs batted in. Leobardo Saldivar, batting .377, 6 home runs and has driven in 45 runs. Zach Jones hitting .363, has 4 home runs and 41 RBIs.
On the mound, hard-throwing starters RHP Steven Kemp 9-2 with an earn run average of 5.64 and Stephen Wells 4-2 with an ERA of 5.52 will definitely see action on the mound. Also a reliable mound presences is Don Herron, 6-0 who can either start or come in as a reliever. Head coach CJ Bilbrey has at his disposal closers by committee in, Tyler Boles and Davis Flores, both have 6 saves each. Who starts game two will be dependent on how pitching is used during the first game of the tournament. Coach Bilbrey can also turn to Jordan Dreibelbis, team leader in strikeouts with 45.
The Hornets won their three-game series, defeating the Owls 2-1 during the regular season in conference play this past April 8-9th. The 30 wins mark the first time in 75 years that HSSU has won that many games. They eclipsed last season overall record of 18-31.
All of the Hornets Conference Championship games can be viewed via live video throughout the tournament. Live Video.