FOREST, Va. – Guilford College's baseball team was picked fifth in the annual preseason Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Poll released Friday. The league's head coaches cast votes in the 11-team poll.
The top of the 2013 ODAC Baseball Preseason Poll is as tightly packed as just two points separate three teams, all of which received first-place consideration. Bridgewater College heads the poll after picking up 92 points and four top nods. Lynchburg College sits second, also with four first place tabs towards 91 points. New to the ODAC in 2013, Shenandoah University debuts at the third position with 90 points and the remaining three top billings.
The Quakers finished last season with their best record since 2006 (21-20) and returns seven starters among 25 letter winners. The line-up features four returning all-conference athletes, led by second-team selection John Macon Smith (.400, 14 2B, 4 3B, 13 HR, 51 RBI, .794 SLG). Second baseman Ben Esser (.331, 24 RBI), shortstop D.J. Phillips (.381, 19 RBI) and outfielder Casey Mann (.361, 3 3B, 19 RBI, 13 SB) all garnered a spot on the third team. All-South Region third baseman Kent Peterson (.403, 26 RBI) gives the Quakers a full returning infield. The pitching staff is led by Borja Jones-Berasaluce (4-3, 4.66 ERA, 58.0 IP, 30 K) and Will James (2-5, 4.66 ERA, 73.1 IP, 32 K).
Guilford opened up their season splitting a two-game weekend series with the Piedmont Lions. The Quakers will host Greensboro College February 6th at 2:30pm and Bluefield State Saturday February 9th at 1:00pm.
2013 ODAC BASEBALL PRESEASON POLL (#) denotes first-place votes
1.Bridgewater (4) 92, 2. Lynchburg (4) 91, 3.Shenandoah (3) 90, 4.Randolph-Macon 71, 5.Guilford 58, 6.Hampden-Sydney 52, 7.Washington and Lee 48, 8.Virginia Wesleyan 34, 9.Emory & Henry 30, 10.Roanoke 22, 11. Eastern Mennonite 17.