Baseball Team Finishes Season on High Note

Posted: June 3, 2004 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Christopher Anzalone

With a National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Tournament bid now under its belt, the George Mason University Patriots baseball team can look back on its season with pride. The team finished its regular season with a record of 20-4 for league play and entered the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Tournament last week as the top-seeded team. Before the tournament started, Coach Bill Brown was chosen as the CAA Coach of the Year, and team shortstop Jeff Palumbo was named CAA Defensive Player of the Year. Palumbo, Chris Looze, and Stacen Gant were also named to the All-CAA first team. Their teammates, Nick Shimer and Adam Innerst, were named to the All-CAA second team.

Despite scoring four runs in the bottom of the 9th inning, the Patriots were upset by sixth-seeded University of Delaware in the CAA Tournament opener on May 26, losing 8-5 in a 10-inning game. In an elimination game the next day, the Patriots again rallied during the 9th inning, scoring 7 times, and defeated fifth-seeded Old Dominion University 11-5 to earn a shot at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU).

The Patriots went on to defeat VCU, 11-3, on May 28, and advanced to meet the University of North Carolina-Wilmington (UNC-W). Despite the team’s efforts, the Patriots were downed by second-seeded UNC-W, 3-1, which knocked them out of the running for the CAA championship.

However, the Patriots were offered a consolation with the at-large slot in the NCAA Tournament, which begins tomorrow in Charlottesville. The Patriots will be the third-seeded team and will face second-seeded Vanderbilt University, with an expected 3 p.m. game start time. Charlottesville’s hometown team, the University of Virginia Cavaliers, is the tournament’s top seed, and will play Princeton University.

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