Aztecs To Host LMU in Home Opener Tonight

TJ Kendzora will get the start vs. Loyola Marymount tonight.

Feb. 18, 2014

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San Diego State opens its 2014 home season this week with a contest against Loyola Marymount in Tuesday, Feb.18,at 6:00 p.m. at Tony Gwynn Stadium. The Aztecs will then host a three-game series vs. West Virginia that gets underway on Friday at 6:00 p.m.

San Diego State's record against Loyola Marymount stands at 64-30 since the 1940 season when they first met on the diamond. The only time the Aztecs and Lions were in the same conference was during the 1977-78 seasons when both were members of the Southern California Baseball Association. SDSU has won five of the last nine meetings (since 2001) and is 41-13 vs. LMU in San Diego and 29-17 in Los Angeles. The Aztecs' last win at Loyola Marymount came in 2001.

Loyola Marymount returns five position starters and three of four starting pitchers from a team that finished 24-27 overall and 12-12 (sixth) in the West Coast Conference a year ago. The Lions began their 2014 season last weekend by winning two of three contests at home vs. Utah Valley. Top offensive players after three contests include shortstop David Fletcher (.385, 2 SB), second baseman David Edwards (.364, 3 RBI) and center fielder Austin Miller (.300, 3 doubles, 2 RBI). On the mound, freshman J. D. Busfield (0-0, 0.00) is expected to get the start against SDSU on Tuesday.

Senior TJ Kendzora will get the call to stat on the mound vs. Loyola Marymount on Tuesday. Kendzora made one appearance during last weekend's series at San Jose State, that coming in the season opener on Friday He tossed two-thirds of an inning in that contest, allowing a walk and a hit while striking out two.

Junior catcher Brad Haynal (San Diego, Calif./Rancho Bernardo HS) earned the Mountain West Conference's first Player of the Week award for the 2014 season for his performance this past weekend at San Jose State. He hit for an average of .364 with four hits including a double and home run, three runs scored and six RBIs. In the MW series opener, a 6-4 loss to the Spartans, he was 1-for-3 with one run scored and one RBI. In Saturday's 5-3 win, Haynal went 1-for-3 with one run scored, two RBIs and a double. Haynal then went 2-for-5 with one run scored, three RBIs and a home run in the 13-8 weekend finale victory. His three-run homer in the fifth inning gave San Diego State a 9-7 lead after trailing the Spartans 7-2. Over the three-game series he caught all 26 innings for the Aztecs and did not commit an error in 17 chances.

Senior second baseman Tim Zier is within striking distance of several SDSU career marks. He has played in 177 games during his SDSU career could catch the record of 225 contest held by Jake McLintock (2002-05). He is currently sixth in career at bats with 701. The record is 843 by McLintock. Zier is also eight in career hits with 224. The top Aztec mark is 281 by McLintock. His 26 times hit by pitch ranks third, 10 behind record holder Pat Colwell (2007-09, 11). Zier26 career sacrifice bunts in only five shy of the school record of 31 held by Steve Dietz (1990-93).

Senior Shortstop Evan Potter got his 2014 season off to a good start by going 4-for-11 with three runs scored, two RBI and a stolen base at San Jose State. He was also hit by pitch twice to bring his career total to 22 to ranks sixth on the SDSU all-time list. The Aztec record is 36 by Pat Colwell (2007-09, 11). Potter also ranks third in career sacrifice bunts with 27, just four off the school record of 31 held by Steve Dietz (1990-93).

Four Aztecs finished opening weekend with batting averages of .364. The quartet of Evan Potter, Ty France, Spencer Thornton and Brad Haynal each went 4-for-11 overt the three contests at San Jose State. Potter and France had identical .462 on-base percentages as well. Haynal led the group with six RBI while the other three each collected two.

After exploding for 15 hits in Sunday's series finale at San Jose State, the Aztecs improved their team batting average to .282, a mark that leads the Mountain West after the opening weekend of play ... After a shaky defensive start in the season opener that saw them commit three errors, the Aztecs did not have a miscue in either of the final two contests of the San Jose State series ... Seven of the eight position players were the same for all three games at San Jose State. The lone change came on Saturday when freshman Andrew Brown played first base. Ryan Muno was at that position on Friday and Sunday ... The Aztec sued three different designated hitters during the weekend. Freshman CJ Saylor debut on Friday. Muno was the DH on Saturday with Tyler Adkison serving in the role in the series finale.

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