DURHAM, N.C. – With just three regular-season series left on the schedule, the Duke baseball team plays host to league opponent Maryland in a key conference set this weekend at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park. The Blue Devils and the Terrapins square off Friday, Saturday and Sunday with all three games scheduled for 1 p.m. starts.
Steve Barnes will call the action for the Blue Devil Network broadcast, available through GoDuke.com. Fan can also follow updates via @Duke_BASE, the official Twitter account of the Duke baseball program.
The top eight teams in the ACC standings make the conference tournament and Duke (24-20, 8-13) currently trails Virginia Tech by a single game for the eighth and final spot. The Blue Devils rebounded from a sweep at No. 1 North Carolina with two wins over High Point during the week.
Duke completed the home-and-home series sweep of High Point with a 4-2 road victory Wednesday. Sophomore Dalton Brown allowed just one hit over five innings for his second victory on the year, while junior Jordan Betts belted a bases-clearing double in the third inning.
Betts has started every game at third base this season, while his .287 average, .515 slugging percentage, seven home run and team-high 42 RBI all mark career highs
Tuesday, the Blue Devils faced a one-run deficit in the eighth but received RBI singles from Chris Marconcini and Kenny Koplove to rally for a 5-4 decision over the Panthers. Freshman Michael Matuella scattered three hits over seven innings for the win, while Marconcini totaled three hits and two RBI.
Matuella, a right-hander from Great Falls, Va., currently leads the team in ERA (2.60) and opposing batting average (.240). He is one of two ACC rookies with an ERA under 3.00 in the 2013 campaign.
In its last ACC outing, Maryland (23-20, 6-15 ACC) won the series opener against Virginia Tech 10-9 before the Hokies won the final two games by scores of 11-0 and 3-2. The Terrapins were victorious in two midweek matchups, defeating Liberty 5-3 Tuesday before downing Towson 16-15 Wednesday.
Friday’s game marks the 167th meeting between Duke and Maryland as the Blue Devils lead the all-time series 84-81-1. The two teams first met in Durham, N.C., on April 21, 1899 with Duke earning the 6-1 victory. The Blue Devils are in search of their first series win against Maryland since the 2008 campaign.