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About 3 hours away
May 28, 2010 - Zach Baker
From a hotel room somewhere in Wisconsin ...
If Heidelberg has designs on winning the national title (and I believe the players and the coaching staff do), it had better win today against No. 1 Johns Hopkins.
I'm not sure Heidelberg will need much more confidence than it already has. Winning 17 straight, including two late comebacks in the postseason -- tend to provide that.
But beating the top seed on the tournament's first day would make Heidelberg the top ranked team left. It wouldn't have to play again until 8:45 p.m. on Saturday, against the winner of Illinois-Wesleyan and Shenandoah.
In the first game today, Cortland scored two runs in the ninth inning to edge Stevens Point, 9-8.
No matter how good a team is, and trust me, every team here is better than that, going into the loser's bracket on the first day, and having to play two must win games a day until Tuesday, is not what anyone has in mind.
Basically, it's a double-elimination tournament, but the first game is close to a must-win.
The game is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Eastern Time, but I think it might start later than that because the first game of the day went long. The second game of the day was scheduled for 2:15, but at last check hadn't started yet.
-I haven't talked to HU coach Matt Palm yet, so I'm not sure who his starter will be today. Everyone should be good and rested. If it were me, I'd go with Brian Koehl, since he's pretty much established himself as the ace of the staff, and I'd view this as a must win game.
Even if I talked to Palm, he wouldn't tell me who he was starting until about 30 seconds before the first pitch. He likes to keep opponents guessing. At this stage, I can't blame him.