BALTIMORE – Originally scheduled as the 2014 home opener for the UMBC baseball team, Thursday's contest against Navy has been move up a day to Wednesday and shifted south to the Midshipmen's home park, Max Bishop Stadium, in Annapolis, Md. First pitch is scheduled for 3:00 p.m.
Junior Shane Vlasic (Ashburn, Va./Broad Run) will make his first start since 2012 for UMBC (1-6) on Wednesday. The right-hander red-shirted last season due to an injury but was one of the Retrievers' most consistent starters as a sophomore, making 13 starts and working a staff-high 69.1 innings. Navy (6-7) will counter with freshman righty Michael McCormick.
Wednesday's contest will be the first in the state of Maryland for the Retrievers after the teams opened the season with a three-game set at William and Mary (Feb. 28-March 2) and then traveled to the Chanticleer Classic (March 8-9) in South Carolina and wrapping up the trip with a single game at Elon on Monday.
The Retriever attack pounded out a season-high 15 hits and scored seven runs on Monday, but the home-standing Phoenix made a late charge by scoring three runs in both the sixth and eighth innings for an 8-7 win. Sophomore Kevin Lachance (Clifton, Va./Centreville) went 3-for-4 to record his second three-hit game of the season for UMBC while junior Anthony Gatto (Hauppauge, N.Y./Smithtown West) picked up two hits in six at-bats and drove in two runs.
Lachance is leading the UMBC offense again this year, hitting .367 (11-for-30) with two doubles and two RBI in seven games. He has also scored three runs. Sophomore third baseman Mark Esposito (Bethany, Conn./Amity Regional) has provided support and is batting a team-best .381 (8-for 21) with two 2-baggers.
Navy defeated Division III Washington (Md.) College on Monday and has now won three of its last four games. The Midshipmen won back-to-back games against Penn and Monmouth to start the weekend, but dropped a 3-2 decision to Towson on Sunday in Annapolis.
Freshman Leland Saile put the Mids up 2-0 in the first inning with an RBI double to right-center and later added a single in the 9-3 win over the Shoreman. Junior Brad Borosak added three hits in the game for the hosts who are 4-3 at home this season.
UMBC leads the all-time series against Navy, 20-18, but the Mids have won six of the last eight contests dating back to 2009. The teams last played in 2012 with the Retrievers winning the series opener in Baltimore, 15-6, but Navy claiming both games in Annapolis, 15-2 and 6-1.
- Senior Rob McCabe (Philadelphia, Pa./St. Joseph's Prep) has hit .333 (6-for-18) with two RBI and three runs scored in four career games against the Midshipmen.
- Wednesday will be Vlasic's third start against Navy.
- UMBC stole four bases against Elon on Monday to bring its season total up to 11. The Retrievers stole four bases in a single game twice in 2013 (at Hartford Apr. 6; at Maine May 17).