PASADENA, Calif. (Sept. 30, 2015) – The Caltech baseball team has released its schedule for the 2016 season this spring, which includes 10 home dates.
Head Coach Matthew Mark's team opens the season with a home doubleheader against St. Katherine College on Saturday, Feb. 13. The Beavers dropped a hard-fought doubleheader to the Firebirds to open the 2015 season, falling 4-3 in the opener and 12-9 in extra innings in the nightcap.
The Beavers move right into conference play the following weekend with a three-game slate against SCIAC Postseason Tournament champion University of La Verne (26-20, 18-10) at home on Friday, Feb. 19 and at the Leopards for two the next day. Mark's squad was swept in their SCIAC-opening series last year but came back to take La Verne to the wire, 3-1, behind a gem from graduated All-SCIAC Second Team selection Derek Kearney in Pool Play.
Caltech continues its SCIAC slate with back-to-back series with Occidental College (22-17, 17-11) and regular season champion Cal Lutheran University (32-12, 21-7) Feb. 26-27 and Mar. 4-5, with the Beavers hosting the Tigers doubleheader on Saturday, Feb. 27 and welcoming the Kingsmen on Friday, Mar. 4.
After a one-week break, the Beavers will head out on a Spring Break Trip to one of several potential warm-weather sites, where they will face a handful of out-of-region Division III foes.
Upon their return, the Beavers enter a run of five uninterrupted SCIAC weekend series, alternating between hosting the Saturday doubleheader and Friday afternoon game. First up is Chapman University (23-16, 16-12), which Caltech nearly shocked in their third matchup last season, jumping out to an 8-0 lead over the first four innings before the Panthers rallied late.
Eighth-place Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges (7-32, 5-23), the University of Redlands (28-14, 20-8) and Whittier College (11-28, 9-19) square off with Caltech over the next three weekends, with Pomona-Pitzer (28-13, 20-8) providing the final challenge prior to SCIAC Pool Play, which will take place on Apr. 27 and 30 and May 1 and 3.
Caltech took major strides forward last season, sweeping a Division III opponent for the first time since at least 2000 and dropping a pair of SCIAC games by just three or fewer runs. Kearney ended his career having posted the third-lowest single-season ERA (6.64) and third-highest innings pitched total (81.1) in program history while tying the single-season record for starts (13). Freshman Garrett Levine (Columbus, Ohio / Columbus Acad.) came just one double shy of tying the single-season program mark of 10 and, along with junior Daniel Chou (Blue Bell, Pa. / Wissahickon), sophomore Harrison Jacobs (Tucson, Ariz. / Catalina Foothills) and freshman David Watson (Fort Collins, Colo. / Windsor), set a new record for games in a season at 37. Chou also set a new benchmark for at-bats in a single season, with 136.