NEWBERRY, S.C. - Newberry College head baseball coach Bob Rikeman is pleased to announce the scarlet and gray's 2010 playing schedule. The slate is highlighted by a home game against Division I opponent Gardner-Webb amongst 21 home dates. Newberry will also visit defending Division II national champions Lynn University on the season's first weekend.
"After a very productive fall season we are really excited to see how well our team competes against some of the best teams in Division II," Rikeman said. "We will be tested early in Florida and I believe we will be up to the challenges that our schedule presents in 2010."
Newberry plays both of 2009's Division II national finalists and a total of six teams that participated in the 2009 NCAA Tournament (Belmont Abbey, Catawba, Francis Marion, Lynn, Tusculum and West Virginia State).
The season begins on Monday, February 1, as Newberry hosts local rival Benedict College for a 2 p.m. start. It will be the first time Newberry has faced off against the Tigers since 2002.
From there, Newberry travels to South Florida for the Nova Southeastern/Nike Challenge for four games. After two games with the host Nova Southeastern Sharks, Newberry plays a doubleheader against the Fighting Knights of Lynn University, who won the Division II national championship in 2009.
After a road game at Francis Marion, Newberry begins a seven-date home stand with a mixture of in-region and out-of-region opponents. The College of Saint Rose from Albany, N.Y., visits for a four-game set on Valentine's weekend, followed by a mid-week visit from Limestone College.
Newberry will play the Griffins of Seton Hill University for the first time in program history with two doubleheaders on February 20 and 21. The home stand is closed out on February 23 with a home game against Francis Marion.
The South Atlantic Conference schedule begins on February 26 and 27 with the first of three trips to Tennessee, as the scarlet and gray visit the Carson-Newman Eagles. Newberry then plays four straight games against Lenoir-Rhyne starting with a non-conference game against the Bears in Hickory on March 2.
The first home SAC series is against Lenoir-Rhyne on March 5 and 6, followed by a road non-conference game at Limestone and a home SAC series against Mars Hill on March 12 and 13. After hosting Coker on March 16, Newberry travels to Catawba for a SAC series on March 19 and 20.
Newberry closes out the month of March with its second-longest home stand beginning with West Virginia State on March 22. The scarlet and gray host a SAC series against Wingate on March 26 and 27 and close the home stand with a game against Lander on March 30.
The scarlet and gray travel to Tennessee for SAC series on back-to-back weekends with the Tusculum series on April 2 and 3 and the Lincoln Memorial series on April 9 and 10.
Perhaps the largest highlight of the schedule is the first appearance by a Division I team at the Smith Road Complex as the Gardner-Webb Bulldogs come to town on April 7. The appearance by Newberry's former SAC rival will be the first game against a Division I opponent for Newberry since a 9-4 loss to Brown University on March 28, 2005, at old Kirkland Field.
Newberry closes the SAC schedule on April 16 and 17 with a home series against Brevard College before the 2010 Food Lion SAC Tournament in Forest City, N.C., on April 22-25.
Following the conference tournament, Newberry will have a series with 2009 College World Series participant Belmont Abbey College. Newberry hosts the Crusaders for one game on April 30 before traveling to the Abbey for a doubleheader on May 1.