Hoosiers Announce 2009 Baseball Schedule
Sept. 15, 2008
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - The Indiana baseball team has released its 2009 schedule, head coach Tracy Smith announced today. The Hoosiers will play at least eight games against 2008 NCAA Tournament opponents. Highlights from the early part of the schedule include the Big Ten/BIG EAST challenge, the Austin Peay Invitational, the Georgia Southern Tournament and IU's spring trip to Winter Haven, Fla.
"This is another challenging schedule for us during what should be a pivotal 2009 season," Smith said. "We are excited to take part in the inaugural Big Ten/BIG EAST Challenge in addition to some other strong early-season tournaments. We feel that our tough non-conference scheduling will prepare us for the Big Ten season."
The inaugural Big Ten/BIG EAST Challenge, hosted by the St. Petersburg/Clearwater Sports Commission, will feature 27 games February 20-22, 2009, at various spring training venues in the St. Petersburg/Clearwater area. Eight teams from the BIG EAST will join all 10 Big Ten squads at the event, where Indiana will take on West Virginia, Georgetown and South Florida.
Indiana then returns to Bloomington for its home opener against IPFW on Tuesday, Feb. 24, at 3 p.m. After opening Sembower Field, the Hoosiers will return to the Austin Peay Invitational, where they were one of three teams to go 2-1 in 2008. The Hoosiers will also take on Indiana State and Eastern Michigan in midweek games before heading back to the road for the Georgia Southern Tournament, where they will also take on East Carolina and Le Moyne.
Morehead State comes to town on March 10 and IU will head to Lexington to take on Kentucky the following day. The Hoosiers will then head south, for their annual spring trip, with the opponents and times yet to be determined for the spring trip to Winter Haven, Fla. IU then will face Xavier in Cincinnati before commencing the conference portion of its schedule on March 27.
"All of our non-conference opponents are going to prepare us for what should be an exciting Big Ten season," Smith said. "With the conference going from four-game series to three in 2009, the game-to-game competition will be even more intense. After a strong finish to end 2008, we intend to be contenders for the conference title this season."
The Hoosiers open conference play at Sembower Field, with Minnesota coming to town from March 27-29. Following an April 1 home game against Cincinnati, Indiana will face its first conference road weekend at Illinois from April 3-5. Following non-conference games against Louisville and Valparaiso, the Hoosiers will then head to Iowa City for three contests against the Hawkeyes.
Following a road game at Ball State, IU will be home for five straight games, starting with a three-game set against Penn State (April 17-19) and concluding with midweek games against Louisville (April 21) and Indiana State (April 22). The Hoosiers then face back-to-back road series in conference action, as they will take on the top two teams from the 2008 season in Michigan (April 24-26) and Purdue (May 1-3).
Indiana concludes conference play with a pair of series at Sembower Field, hosting Northwestern (May 8-10) and Michigan State (May 14-16) with a road game at Evansville (May 12) in between. The Big Ten Tournament (May 20-23) will once again be hosted by the regular-season champion, while the NCAA Tournament begins on May 29 at campus locations. The College World Series will be played June 13-24 at Omaha's Johnny Rosenblatt Stadium.
The Hoosiers began their fall practices on Sunday, Sept. 7, and will continue through Oct. 19, with the highlight of the fall schedule being the Cream & Crimson World Series, which runs from Monday, Oct. 6-Sunday, Oct. 12.
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