After taking two-of-three from Rhode Island over the weekend, Maryland hosts George Mason for its first midweek game of the season on Tuesday at 4 p.m. The two teams met in mid-April last season in Virginia, where the Patriots came out on top 9-5.
Now, George Mason it still looking for its first victory. The Patriots started the season 0-5 and they have struggled to limit their opponent’s offense. Through five games, George Mason has been outscored, 55-21.
For Maryland, the Terps look to continue their great start to the season. Last season Maryland had success in its midweek matchups, posting a 9-4 record. The Terps look to duplicate that success this season, beginning with the Patriots.
Through its first six games, Maryland has impressed on both sides of the ball. Offensively the Terps have tallied 43 runs, averaging just about seven runs per contest and outscoring opponents 43-20.
Junior Randy Bednar leads the team in RBI (6) while also posting a .333 average. Fellow junior Tommy Gardiner, tied for the team-high in hits (7) with Bednar, has also been impressive at the plate. Gardiner leads the team in average (.412) and has totaled four RBI and scored three runs.
This past weekend, reigning Big Ten Freshman of the Year Maxwell Costes’ bat began to heat up. Against Rhode Island, Costes went 4-for-9 with three RBI and four runs scored. Costes also belted his first home run of the season on Sunday and went on to hit his second in the same game en route to a 3-0 victory.
On the mound Maryland has added depth, as junior Zach Thompson, who was the typical Saturday starter last season, will get the midweek nod this Tuesday. The start will be the right-hander’s first appearance for Maryland since last season, when he tossed a 5.08 ERA on his way to a 3-6 record in 14 starts, including 63 strikeouts.
The Terps’ bullpen has also been solid so far this season and a few more arms should get their opportunity in this midweek game. So far, the bullpen has allowed six earned runs in 23 ⅓ innings pitched, and the Terps’ pitching staff as a whole has the second-lowest ERA in the Big Ten (2.45, behind Penn State’s 1.68 ERA).
George Mason Patriots (0-5, 0-0 Atlantic 10)
George Mason finished last year 19-35 and went 5-19 in conference play, which kept the Patriots out of the Atlantic 10 Tournament. They also finished the season on an eight-game losing streak.
With a rough start to the season the Patriots have continued their losing streak from last season and they are still on the hunt for their first victory of 2020. George Mason has lost all three of its road games so far.
Hitters to Watch
George Mason lost one of its most powerful bats, Logan Driscoll, to the MLB draft last season. Now, it’s graduate transfer Cooper Mrowka who has been one of the players to step up offensively.
Mrowka is tied for the team-high in hits with five and is hitting .333 this season, including one RBI and four runs scored. Junior Scott Morgan has also been an offensive threat for George Mason. Morgan is batting .333 with two home runs, three RBI and four runs scored.
Pitchers to Watch
Sophomore southpaw Nate Young will get the nod on the mound for the Patriots. Young currently holds a 9.00 ERA after a three-inning relief outing, though it’s still early in the season. As a freshman Young made five starts and three relief appearances, and though he struggled on the mound does at least have some experience starting.
Out of the pen, sophomore Patrick Halligan has thrown the most innings with 4 ⅔ and has allowed three runs while freshman Lyle Miller-Green has thrown 4 ⅓ innings out of the bullpen and has also allowed three runs.