Hawks excited about second NCAA Regional appearance

Hawks excited about second NCAA Regional appearance

By Chuck Tidmore

Sports Information Assistant


MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Huntingdon head baseball coach D.J. Conville is looking to keep his team mentally sharp as they head into the NCAA Division III South Regional in Mount Berry, Ga., on Wednesday.

It has been 23 days since the Hawks have last played a game and Conville has been trying to keep his team motivated.

"We have tried several different things," Conville said. "We took some time off for finals and for the guys to recover physically and mentally from the season. There have been some intrasquad scrimmages but now we are looking to pay more attention to detail and go over scouting reports. If our guys come out mentally sharp and compete, we'll have a shot at winning."

Senior center fielder Patrick Kucera says the attitude of the team has been positive during the time off.

"I think this three-week period has left us excited and ready to get back out on the field," Kucera said. "We ended the regular season by making history for coach Conville, (who became Huntingdon's all-time winningest baseball coach), and we would like to make some more history this week."

Huntingdon's first appearance in the NCAA Division III Regional came in 2013. This year's roster features nine seniors who were members of the 2013 team.

"That was an exciting year for the program," Kucera said. "That team set an example for us and this is something we have been working for since then. To get back here is an amazing feeling."

Senior shortstop Landon Sessions also remembers the excitement of that 2013 season.

"I didn't travel with the team to the Regional, but I still went and watched," Sessions said. "I saw the atmosphere and the level of play it takes to win the regional. It was good experience to see what we need to do to win it."

Huntingdon (27-17) will enter as the No. 5 seed and will face No. 2 seed Birmingham-Southern (37-11) on Wednesday at 1:30 p.m. (Central)

"I see the good and bad in playing Birmingham-Southern," Conville said. "Familiarity isn't a bad thing. We split with them this season but neither of us saw the other's No. 1 pitcher. It will be a challenge for us but we need to just bring our best."

The remainder of the South Regional consists of No. 1 seed Emory (32-10), No. 3 seed Shenandoah (32-10), No. 4 seed Marietta (28-15) and No. 6 seed Thomas More (30-10).


South Regional Info

 2016 NCAA South Regional website: http://berryvikings.com/tournaments/bsb/2015-16/index

General admission for the South Regional is $10. Admission is $7 for students with valid ID, senior citizens and children ages 2-12. Children under two will be admitted for free.
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