Story courtesy of Kent State Athletic Communications
KENT, Ohio -- Saddle up, Flashes. It's time for a Texas two-step.
Ranked No. 24 in the nation according to the Collegiate Baseball Newspaper, the Kent State baseball team (43-15) will be headed to the Lone Star State to open 2011 NCAA Championship play at the Austin Regional this weekend (June 3-6).
The Mid-American Conference regular season and tournament champions drew a No. 3 regional seed for the first time in program history and will square off with No. 2-seeded Texas State Friday (June 3) at 2 p.m. EST (1 p.m. CST) at the University of Texas's UFCU Disch Falk Field.
No. 5-ranked Texas (43-15), which earned a No. 7 national seed for the tournament and the No. 1 seed in the regional as host, and No. 4-seeded Princeton (23-22) will also take part in the Austin Regional. The two squads will meet in the opening-round nightcap of the regional on Friday at 7:30 p.m. EST (6:30 p.m. CST).
The winner of the game between the Golden Flashes and Bobcats will face the winner of the clash between the Longhorns and Tigers game on Saturday (June 4) at 7:30 p.m. EST (6:30 p.m. CST). The losers of the opening-round games will meet in an elimination game at 2 p.m. EST (1 p.m. CST). The winner of the first elimination game will square off with the loser of the Saturday nightcap in a second do-or-die contest Sunday (June 5) at 2 p.m. EST (1 p.m. CST). The regional championship game will be held that evening at 7:30 p.m. EST (6:30 p.m. CST). Should the remaining undefeated squad be dealt a loss in the regional final, a second game will be played Monday (June 6) at 2 p.m. EST (1 p.m. CST) to decide who advances to the NCAA Super Regionals next weekend (June 10-13). The College World Series will be held June 18-29 at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Neb.
The Golden Flashes stormed past Miami, 11-0, in the 2011 MAC Tournament Championship Game last Saturday (May 28) at VA Memorial Stadium, clinching the program's unprecedented third straight conference tournament title and ninth in program history. The win also punched Kent State's ticket to the 2011 NCAA Championships as the MAC's automatic bid, marking the 12th time Kent State will appear in the national tournament and third straight appearance. The Flashes are 7-20 all-time in national tournament action and last won a contest in the NCAA Championships on May 30, 2009, eliminating then-No.24-ranked Cal Poly, 10-9, at the Tempe Regional. Kent State has never advanced to the Super Regionals.
Texas State (40-21) enters the Austin Regional having won the Southland Conference Tournament with a 9-0 rout of Nicholls State last Saturday. The Bobcats are making their fifth NCAA Tournament appearance and second in the past three seasons.
Texas (43-15) won a share of the Big 12 Conference regular-season title and has won six national championships in program history -- the last of which came in 2005.
Princeton, which was the first squad to qualify for the NCAA Tournament after clinching the Ivy League title, is making its first trip to the national postseasons stage since 2006.
Kent State has never faced any of the teams participating in the Austin Regional.