INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference tournament champion Trinity University earned its 12th bid into the 58-team NCAA Div. III Men’s Baseball Tournament, while Texas Lutheran received its second-straight bid into the championship field after receiving one of the 18 at-large bids. Regional Bracket
The TU Tigers became just the fourth team in league history to come out of the losers bracket and rebound to finish as the last squad standing as the fourth-ranked Tigers defeated ninth-ranked Texas Lutheran, 9-3 and 6-5, Sunday May 5th, to claim the program’s 12th overall SCAC Baseball Tournament title.
Trinity (34-10) and Texas Lutheran (31-12) earned the top two seeds in the Seguin, Texas region hosted by TLU set to begin Friday, May 17.
Four teams will compete at thirteen regional sites and two teams will compete at three regional sites. The four-team regionals will use a double-elimination format and the two-team regionals will play a best-of-five series. Forty conference champions qualified automatically.
This year marks the first year since 2012, when Trinity and Birmingham-Southern College earned bids, that the SCAC placed two or more team in the NCAA regionals. It is the seventh time in league history that two or more teams advanced to the NCAA regionals. (1996, 2001-2002, 2006, 2009, 2012, 2019).
Trinity will take on Franklin (28-13) for its NCAA opening round contest, the automatic qualifier out of the Heartland Conference, on Friday at TLU. On the other side of the bracket, Texas Lutheran will host the American Southwest Conference champion, Concordia (TX) (34-10). The winners will meet on Saturday for the right to advance into the Seguin, Texas Regional Championship, while the losers will have to battle through the back-draw of the double-elimination tournament.
Trinity, led by head coach Tim Scannell in his 21st season, is making its 12th NCAA Tournament appearance and first since winning the NCAA Div. III Baseball National Championship in 2016. The Tigers are led offensively by SCAC Player-of-the-Year, senior outfielder Jake Martin, who enters the NCAA Tournament with a team leading 67 hits, to go along with a .342 batting average, .546 slugging percentage, 43 runs scored, 37 RBI and seven home runs. On the mound, sophomore Corey Cater leads Trinity with seven wins on the year, throwing 68.1 innings with 68 strikeouts, 17 earned runs, 50 hits and a 2.25 ERA. Trinity enters this weekend’s NCAA Tournament with an overall tournament record of 32-20 and two trips to the Div. III Baseball College World Series.
TLU, under the guidance of SCAC Coach-of-the-Year Greg Burnett, is making its sixth overall NCAA appearance and coming off arguably the best season in program history as the Bulldogs finished 2018 as the Div. III national runner-up. The Bulldogs are paced offensively by junior outfielder Tyler Cauley, who enters the NCAA Tournament with a .336 (51-for-152) batting average, 46 RBI, 45 runs scored, seven home runs and a .592 slugging percentage. Senior Nathan Malinovsky led the team with 12 starts, producing a 6-3 record, 84 strikeouts and a 4.44 ERA in 75 innings of work to pace the Bulldogs staff.
Winners of the sixteen regional tournaments will qualify for eight, best-of-three series at the super regionals, Friday-Saturday, May 24-25. The eight super regional winners will then qualify for the pool play double-elimination championship at Perfect Game Field at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Friday-Tuesday/Wednesday, May 31-June 4/5, 2019.
To view the entire NCAA Tournament announcement, click here.