Talladega College and Edward Waters College baseball teams played their respective 2015 season openers as both Historically Black College and University (HBCU) teams defeated their opponents on the road to start the college baseball season. Talladega opens the season with a 10 to 8 win against the University of Mobile in Mobile, Alabama. This is the third season in a row that the Tornadoes have opened the season away from home with a series at Mobile.
Talladega finish 2014 season with 39-20 record and went to the NAIA National Tournament Opening Round. The Tornadoes have six returning starters from last year’s team as the team received votes in the latest NAIA Preseason Coaches’ Poll. They have one goal for the 2015 season, making the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics World Series.
Edward Waters traveled to Naples Florida taking on Ave Maria University with a doubleheader victory winning the first game 6 to 1 then holding off a late rally to finish the second game defeating Ave Maria 12 to 10.
EWC jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the first inning of the second game. The Tigers exploded for another 5 runs in the fifth inning highlighted by a grand slam home run.
Both teams will conclude the final series single game set for February 1st. The Tigers will play a full 55 game schedule, 30 of which are slated to be at home.
Head Coach Reginald Johnson, II and Tiger Baseball are looking to contend for a Gulf Coast Athletic Conference and NAIA National Championship. EWC will feature a healthy mix of new and familiar faces on the diamond this season. A combination of 9 freshman, 10 sophomore, 6 juniors and 4 seniors look to improve following a 2014 campaign that resulted in a 24-27 overall record.
The Tornadoes lost eight seniors from last season’s team that went 39-20. This season, the Tornadoes will be led by a strong senior class that’s been with the program for four years plus a crop of junior college transfers “from Florida and Alabama”; they are excited about starting a new season.
Talladega and EWC scheduled to play each other during the 2015 regular season as GCAC (Gulf Coast Athletic Conference) foes. The home and home three game series scheduled for two back to back weekend conference show down has the Tigers on the road in Talladega, Alabama March 13 and 14. The Tornadoes visit EWC in Jacksonville, Florida March 21 and 22.
Both teams are chomping to contend for a Gulf Coast Athletic Conference and NAIA National Championship. The battle could be settled during the conference finals as Talladega host the Conference Tournament. Win the GCAC and get in a good position, to be invited to the NAIA National tournament.