Rebels To Host BYU On Monday

March 17, 2013


LAS VEGAS ( - The No. 21 UNLV Rebels will renew an old rivalry on Monday against BYU. It will be the first meeting between the two since May 25, 2011 in the Mountain West Tournament. They took a year off as BYU moved to the West Coast Conference for baseball. The two will meet at Earl E. Wilson Stadium for a single game at 3:00 p.m. The Rebels lost two of three against New Mexico over the weekend, losing 3-2 in 10 innings on Friday, winning 8-7 on Saturday and losing 12-7 on Sunday. The Cougars were swept by San Diego, losing 7-5 on Thursday,  5-3 on Friday and 10-9 on Saturday. Prior to the series against the Toreros, they  took two-of-three against No. 21 UC Irvine.

Leading the Rebels from the plate this season is senior Mark Shannon. He is batting .375 and has a team-high 30 hits. He also is tied for the lead with Erik VanMeetren in RBI with 15 and doubles with seven. From the mound, junior Buddy Borden (2-1) currently has a 1.29 ERA which is the best on the Rebel staff for starters. He also leads team in strikeouts with 29. Sophomore Erick Fedde (3-0) sports a 2.25 ERA and is second on the team with 28 strikeouts in 32.0 innings. John Richy was named the Mountain West Pitcher of the Week, but took his third loss of the season on Sunday against New Mexico. From the bullpen, senior Andy Beresford has been the strongest pitcher, posting a 3-0 record to go along with a 0.84 ERA. He earned his third save of the year against New Mexico on Saturday, striking out the final two batters with the tying run on third. 

BYU (9-10, 0-3 West Coast Conference) comes into Earl E. Wilson with four consecutive losses. The Cougars lost four straight earlier this season, but rebounded to win their next four. Despite its record, the team has played very competitve against top teams. BYU lost to LSU in Baton Rouge 6-5 on February 21, but came back two days later to beat the No. 2 ranked Tigers 9-4. The Cougars also have two wins over No. 21 ranked UC Irvine. Adam Law is leading BYU with a .351 average. Jaycob Brugman leads the team with three home runs and 20 RBI to go along with a .333 average. Leading the team from the mound is Desmond Poulson who sports a 2.29 ERA and is 2-0 on the year. Derek Speigner is the top reliever for the Cougars this season. He has made nine appearances and holds a 2.53 ERA. He has six strikeouts in 10.2 innings pitched. The projected starter for BYU against UNLV will be Mark Anderson who sports a 4.80 ERA and has five strikeouts and 13 walks in 15.0 innnigs pitched. As a staff, BYU has a 3.71 ERA.

UNLV and BYU have a very rich baseball history where the Cougars hold a 77-71 advantage over the Rebels. BYU has won the last two games, but UNLV has won four of the last six games that have been played at Earl E. Wilson Stadium. This will be the first time since 1996 that the two teams will be meeting as non-conference opponents. Head coaches Tim Chambers and Mike Littlewood are renewing an old rivalry as well as the two coaches played competitive games at the junior college level when Chambers was at CSN and Littlewood was at Dixie State.

After the Monday afternoon contest, UNLV will head back on the road to face play Mountain West opponent San Diego State. They will play a three game series against the Aztecs before playing one game against the University of San Diego on Monday, March 25.