The Valdosta State baseball team is sitting barely at the top of the GSC and must defend their ranking against co-leaders North Alabama this weekend in a three game series at Billy Grant Field.
The Lions (24-7) (6-3) who are ranked #1 (according to NFCA) in the nation have more overall wins however the Blazers (15-10) (7-2) have been the most dominate team in conference play.
VSU has shocked many already this season putting together a good record so far by executing the small ball style.
The Blazers will need to cool down the surging Lions who have won five games in a row coming into this weekend.
Both teams have been mostly led by their star seniors in their success in VSU’s catcher Christian Glisson and UNA’s infielder Michael Schmidt.
It should be intriguing to watch what these two offensive mules do when they match-up together for the first time of the year.
While Glisson leads the league in batting and slugging percentage (.430) (.779), Schmidt is tied for most runs scored (31) in the GSC.
The Blazers no doubt must be connecting on all cylinders for them to win the series and hold the top spot in the conference.
VSU has won both of their previous three games series this season against conference foes Christian Brothers and Delta State.
This will be the last series of the year and by far will be the most challenging.
Lions outfielder Jake Sloan, regarded as the conference’s best DH, could cause trouble in the first game depending on who takes the mound for the Blazers.
UNA has outscored VSU in total runs by a wide margin so its pivotal for the Blazers to focus on defense and pitching like they have already.
Not having as many offensive weapons as Lions, the pressure will rest on the Blazer pitchers to keep the score low as possible.
The first game is Saturday and two games without a DH on Sunday. This match-up could easily be a preview of the GSC tournament in May.