The season may have just started but there is little time to waste as conference games are already under way in SLIAC baseball. This week's SLIAC Game of the Week is between Iowa Wesleyan College and Webster University.
At a Glance
This weekend Iowa Wesleyan will travel to St. Louis, Mo. to face Webster in a three game series. The series matches two teams from the SLIAC West Division and pits two of three teams in the conference with a winning record against each other. It also marks the divisional series debut in the SLIAC's new two division format. This weekend's games will be played at GCS Ballpark in Sauget, Ill. with a double header set for Saturday and a single game on Sunday.
About Iowa Wesleyan
Iowa Wesleyan begins the week with a 5-3 overall record and a 1-1 record in the SLIAC. The Tigers started the season off with three straight wins as they traveled to Florida for spring break. The Tiger offense put up some big numbers in the warm weather, scoring double digit runs in three games so far this season. They concluded their southern trip with a double header against Principia to open SLIAC play, splitting the games. The Tigers are set to play Monmouth (Ill.) this Wednesday before heading down to face Webster.
Iowa Wesleyan is currently hitting .356 as a team and have scored the third most runs in the league with 60 over their eight games. The Tigers offense has been have to a scorching pace thanks to a trio of sophomores in Chayancze Stirbis, Tanner Anderson, and Travis Kostello. Stirbis is hitting .542 with 12 runs scored and six stolen bases while Anderson is hitting .481 with seven runs batted in and Kostello leads the team with nine runs batted in while hitting .385 thus far.
Webster starts the week with a 6-4 overall record and will be making their 2015 conference opener this weekend. Webster began the season slow, going 1-4 in their first five games. However the Gorloks have responded with a vengeance winning their last five games including four victories over ranked opponents. The Gorloks are set to host Wisconsin-Oshkosh on Wednesday before playing host to Iowa Wesleyan this weekend.
Webster's offense has been carried by Blake Thomas and Kyle Uhrich early on. Thomas is hitting .378 with a team high 11 runs batted in with seven doubles while Uhrich is hitting .368 with 10 runs batted in and has drawn six walks already. Jeff Kammer has provided early season pop with two home runs and seven RBI while hitting .342. The Gorlok pitching has picked up where it left off and holds a 2.91 earned-run average, striking out 75 batters in their 86.2 innings pitched. Last year's SLIAC Newcomer of the Year, C.J. Lee, has made three starts and gone 1-1 with a 2.76 E.R.A. and 12 strikeouts.
- Webster leads the all-time series against Iowa Wesleyan 3-0.
- Last year Webster captured their eighth consecutive SLIAC regular season title, going undefeated with a 26-0 record.
- Iowa Wesleyan went 11-28 overall and 8-19 in conference play last year and were picked 5th in West Division in the 2015 SLIAC Preseason poll.
- Webster was 37-7 overall and were picked as the 2015 SLIAC Preseason favorites in the West Division.