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2017 Week 4 College Baseball Top-25

March 6, 2017
Top-ranked TCU had much to celebrate as the Horned Frogs swept through the field at the Shriners College Classic in Houston. (photo courtesy of TCU Athletics and gofrogs.com)

Top-ranked TCU had much to celebrate as the Horned Frogs swept through the field at the Shriners College Classic in Houston. (photo courtesy of TCU Athletics and gofrogs.com)

Week 3 of the 2017 college baseball season wrapped up with the top eight teams holding their positions for another seven days. The jewel of the weekend took place at Minute Maid Park in Houston at the Shriners Hospitals for Children College Classic as a trifecta of teams from the Big 12 faced off with three squads from the SEC.

Top-ranked TCU rolled through the week at 4-0 to stay atop the rankings. The Horned Frogs dispatched Rice with ease on Tuesday before sweeping through the tourney in Houston. After knocking off #5 LSU on Friday, TCU gave up five runs in the top half of the first inning to #10 Texas A&M and had to play catch-up throughout the regulation nine innings. Trailing 10-5 entering the bottom of the ninth, the Frogs plated five runs to force free baseball and won in the 15th on Ryan Merrill’s RBI double. TCU secured another week at #1 with a 5-3 win over #9 Mississippi, who stumbled to an 0-4 week, including 0-3 in Houston.

#2 Florida split a mid-week home-and-home with #17 Central Florida and handled Columbia with ease for a 4-1 week. The Week 3 star for the Gators was junior RHP Alex Faedo, who blanked the Lions on three hits over seven innings with nine strikeouts to pick up his second win of the season on Friday night.

Oregon State stayed firm in third with an easy three-game sweep of UC Davis at Goss Stadium in Corvallis, OR. Luke Heimlich allowed three hits and fanned ten Aggies hitters in eight shutout innings on Friday. 2B Cadyn Grenier hit .400 (6-for-10) with a pair of triples and drove in six while 3B Michael Gretler, also, hit .400 while driving in three runs in the series.

#4 Louisville remained undefeated, hammering Morehead State 20-2 and opening their three game series with Eastern Michigan by blanking the Eagles 13-0. However, the Cardinals, barely, slipped by the visitors from Ypsilanti to wrap up the weekend, needing 13 innings to beat EMU 3-2 on Saturday and scoring the eventual winning run in the 7th inning for an 8-7 victory. CF Logan Taylor was one of a handful of Cardinals with a huge offensive weekend, hitting .385 (5-for-13) with three RBI and eight runs scored. Nick Bennett picked up the Friday night victory, as he combined with Sam Bordner and Shay Smiddy to blank the Eagles on one hit.

Despite a 2-2 week and only one victory in Houston, #5 LSU stands pat on the strength of competition. The Tigers nipped improved Nicholls State, 3-2, and sandwiched a 4-0 victory over #16 Baylor around losses to #1 TCU and #18 Texas Tech. Greg Deichmann’s 7th inning RBI single plated the eventual winning run for the Tuesday night win over the Colonels and Jared Poche’ continued his strong start to 2017 with seven innings of sterling pitching in the Saturday night win over the Bears. Deichmann finished the week hitting .353 (6-for-17) with his 5th home run of the season and four RBI.

#6 Arizona finished the week 2-1, facing competition from the SEC, Big 12 and Big Ten at the Frisco College Baseball Classic in Frisco, TX. The Wildcats blanked Arkansas 3-0 on Friday night as J.C. Cloney and Cameron Ming combined on a three-hit shutout. Cal Stevenson’s walk-off RBI double to center scored Matt Fraizer to lift Arizona past Oklahoma State, 10-9, on Saturday and Rio Gomez allowed one run over seven innings on Sunday, but took the loss in a 1-0 decision to Nebraska, snapping the Cats’ season-opening winning streak at ten.

Florida State improved to 9-2 after a 4-0 week that saw a one-run victory over Jacksonville and an offensive explosion in a three-game sweep of Oakland. The Noles scored three times in the top of the 8th to rally past the Dolphins 6-5 on Tuesday and mauled the visiting Grizzlies for 44 runs. 1B Quincy Nieporte went 4-for-7 in limited action with two homers and eight RBI for the series and Tyler Holton ran his record to 3-0 after his two-hit, 13-strikeout effort in Saturday’s 12-1 victory.

A 4-1 record couldn’t move Virginia past last week’s #8 ranking, but the gap between the top eight teams is squeezing tighter and tighter. The Wahoos dispatched William & Mary in an easy Tuesday effort before squaring off against Niagara and LaSalle at the Virginia Tournament in Charlottesville, VA. UVa split a pair with the Purple Eagles and crushed the Explorers by a combined score of 30-6. CF/P/DH Adam Haseley raked to the tune of .400 (8-for-20) for the week with two homers, two doubles, four RBI and eight runs scored and allowed, only, a pair of unearned runs over 6.1 innings to improve to 2-0 on the season in Sunday’s 18-3 win over winless LaSalle.

Baylor, unranked by most national publications, moves up seven spots to ninth after a strong 3-1 week, including a pair of wins over SEC clubs in Houston. The Bears bludgeoned Arkansas-Pine Bluff 17-3 on Tuesday before heading to Minute Maid Park where Nick Lewis pitched seven innings of shutout ball in Friday’s 4-0 win over Ole Miss. Following a 4-0 loss to LSU, Baylor looked like they would head home with two straight losses as Texas A&M led 3-1 heading to the home half of the ninth. However, it was deja vu all over again for the Aggies, as the bullpen was tagged for five ninth inning runs for the second time in less than 24 hours, this time, capped by SS Tucker Cascadden’s walk-off grand slam and a 6-3 Bears win.

Central Florida, also, advances seven places to round out Week 4’s top-ten. The Knights lost their first game of the season on Tuesday, 4-3, in the first half of a home-and-home with #2 Florida, but exacted revenge, blistering the Gators, 11-2, on the following evening. The Knights, then, swept Stony Brook at the UCF Baseball Complex, including a walk-off win on Sunday. SS Kam Gellinger hit .471 (8-for-17) over the five-games and capped his week with a bases-loaded, walk-off single to beat the Seawolves on Sunday. LF Kyle Marsh was a beast all week, hitting .500 (9-for-18) with two doubles, two homers and ten RBI.

Oklahoma vaults eight places to 11th following a 5-0 week, Clemson moves from 20th to 12th on the heels of their series win over South Carolina, Texas A&M drops three spots, despite their bullpen implosion, to 13th, Texas Tech jumps four notches to 14th on the strength of their showing in Houston and South Carolina retreats a pair of positions to 15th.

East Carolina, riding an eight-game winning streak, returns to the rankings at 16th, Michigan State, after a 3-0 week, climbs four spots to 17th, Saint Louis’ undefeated week advances the Billikens four places to 18th, Wright State, boasting one of the nation’s toughest schedules cracks the top-20 at #19, up four from last week, and South Florida swept Toledo to move from 24th to 20th.

Despite an 0-4 week, Mississippi sits at #21, down 12 from last week, St. John’s moves up three to #22, Louisiana-Lafayette rejoins the fray at #23, North Carolina plummets 13 places to 24th and, barely hanging on, is Southern Mississippi at #25, a slip of 11 positions.

Dropping out of the rankings this week are North Carolina State (#12) and Vanderbilt (#15).

1. TCU (10-1, 0-0 Big 12) This week (4): vs. Dallas Baptist (8-3, 0-0 MVC) 3/7; vs. UC Irvine (6-4, 0-0 Big West) 3/10-12
(LW – 1) Last week (4-0): vs. Rice (4-8, 0-0 C-USA) W 13-5; **Shriners Hospitals for Children College Classic at Houston, TX** vs. #5 LSU (9-3, 0-0 SEC-W) W 9-6; vs. #10 Texas A&M (9-3, 0-0 SEC-W) W 11-10 (15); vs. #9 Mississippi (7-4, 0-0 SEC-W) W 5-3

2. Florida (10-2, 0-0 SEC-E) This week (5): at/vs. Florida Gulf Coast (10-2, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) 3/7-8; vs. Seton Hall (4-6, 0-0 Big East) 3/10-12
(LW – 2) Last week (4-1): vs./at #17 Central Florida (11-1, 0-0 AAC) W 4-3, L 11-2; vs. Columbia (0-3, 0-0 Ivy-Gehrig) W 7-0, W 7-2, W 8-4

3. Oregon State (10-1, 0-0 PAC-12) This week (5): vs. Portland (1-9, 0-0 WCC) 3/7; vs. Ball State (7-4, 0-0 MAC-W) 3/9-11
(LW – 3) Last week (3-0): vs. UC Davis (3-6, 0-0 Big West) W 4-0, W 14-2, W 4-1

4. Louisville (11-0, 0-0 ACC-A) This week (5): at Eastern Kentucky (6-6, 0-0 OVC) 3/7; vs. Fort Wayne (3-9, 0-0 Summit) 3/8; vs. Pittsburgh (7-4, 0-0 ACC-C) 3/10-12
(LW – 4) Last week (4-0): vs. Morehead State (7-5, 0-0 OVC) W 20-2; vs. Eastern Michigan (2-11, 0-0 MAC-W) W 13-0, W 3-2 (13), W 8-7

5. LSU (9-3, 0-0 SEC-W) This week (5): vs. San Diego (6-3, 0-0 WCC) 3/7; at McNeese State (8-4, 0-0 Southland) 3/8; vs. Wichita State (7-3, 0-0 MVC) 3/10-12
(LW – 5) Last week (2-2): vs. Nicholls State (7-5, 0-0 Southland) W 3-2; **Shriners Hospital for Children College Classic at Houston, TX** vs. #1 TCU (10-1, 0-0 Big 12) L 9-6; vs. #16 Baylor (11-1, 0-0 Big 12) W 4-0; vs. #18 Texas Tech (11-2, 0-0 Big 12) L 5-4

6. Arizona (10-1, 0-0 PAC-12) This week (4): at #14 Texas Tech (11-2, 0-0 Big 12) 3/7; vs. Hartford (1-5, 0-0 America East) 3/10-12
(LW – 6) Last week (2-1): **Frisco College Baseball Classic at Frisco, TX** vs. Arkansas (8-3, 0-0 SEC-W) W 3-0; vs. Oklahoma State (6-5, 0-0 Big 12) W 10-9; vs. Nebraska (3-6, 0-0 Big Ten) L 1-0

7. Florida State (9-2, 0-0 ACC-A) This week (5): at #10 Central Florida (11-1, 0-0 AAC) 3/7-8; vs. Boston College (4-5, 0-0 ACC-A) 3/10-12
(LW – 7) Last week (4-0): at Jacksonville (6-6, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) W 6-5; vs. Oakland (1-10, 0-0 Horizon) W 18-10, W 12-1, W 14-6

8. Virginia (11-1, 0-0 ACC-C) This week (4): at George Washington (3-9, 0-0 Atlantic 10) 3/7; at #24 North Carolina (9-3, 0-0 ACC-C) 3/10-12
(LW – 8) Last week (4-1): vs. William & Mary (6-4, 0-0 CAA) W 11-3; **Virginia Tournament at Charlottesville, VA** vs. Niagara (6-4, 0-0 Metro Atlantic) W 5-3, L 8-5; vs. LaSalle (0-11, 0-0 Atlantic 10) W 12-3, W 18-3

9. Baylor (11-1, 0-0 Big 12) This week (4): at Sam Houston State (8-4, 0-0 Southland) 3/7; vs. Houston (7-3, 0-0 AAC) 3/10-12
(LW – 16) Last week (3-1): vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff (2-8, 2-1 SWAC-W) W 17-3; **Shriners Hospitals for Children College Classic at Houston, TX** vs. #9 Mississippi (7-4, 0-0 SEC-W) W 4-0; vs. #5 LSU (9-3, 0-0 SEC-W) L 4-0; vs. #10 Texas A&M (9-3, 0-0 SEC-W) L 6-3

10. Central Florida (11-1, 0-0 AAC) This week (5): vs. #7 Florida State (9-2, 0-0 ACC-A) 3/7-8; vs. Central Michigan (3-7, 0-0 MAC-W) 3/10-12
(LW – 17) This week (4-1): at/vs. #2 Florida (10-2, 0-0 SEC-E) L 4-3, W 11-2; vs. Stony Brook (1-8, 0-0 America East) W 7-3, W 8-4, W 3-2

11. Oklahoma (13-1, 0-0 Big 12) This week (5): vs. Wichita State (7-3, 0-0 MVC) 3/7; vs. Buffalo (4-5, 0-0 MAC-E) 3/9-11
(LW – 19) Last week (5-0): vs. Arkansas-Little Rock (6-6, 0-0 Sun Belt) W 10-5; vs. Central Connecticut State (4-5, 0-0 Northeast) W 3-0, W 13-2, W 6-1, W 11-2

12. Clemson (8-3, 0-0 ACC-A) This week (4): vs. #17 Michigan State (9-1, 0-0 Big Ten) 3/8 **at Fluor Field – Greenville, SC**; vs. Notre Dame (3-8, 0-0 ACC-A) 3/10-12
(LW – 20) Last week (3-1): vs. Wofford (3-8, 0-0 Southern) W 9-2; vs./** at Fluor Field – Greenville, SC**/at #13 South Carolina (7-5, 0-0 SEC-E) L 2-0, W 8-7, W 5-3 (11)

13. Texas A&M (9-3, 0-0 SEC-W) This week (5): vs. UT Rio Grande Valley (10-2, 0-0 WAC) 3/7-8; vs. Brown (0-3, 0-0 Ivy-Rolfe) 3/10-12
(LW – 10) Last week (3-2): vs. Prairie View A&M (1-12, 0-0 SWAC-W) W 9-2; vs. Incarnate Word (8-5, 0-0 Southland) W 12-5; **Shriners Hospitals for Children College Classic at Houston, TX** vs. #18 Texas Tech (11-2, 0-0 Big 12) W 9-0; vs. #1 TCU (10-1, 0-0 Big 12) L 11-10 (15); vs. #16 Baylor (11-1, 0-0 Big 12) L 6-3

14. Texas Tech (11-2, 0-0 Big 12) This week (4): vs. #6 Arizona (10-1, 0-0 PAC-12) 3/7; vs. UTSA (6-5, 0-0 C-USA) 3/10-12
(LW – 18) Last week (3-1): vs. New Mexico (7-3, 3-0 MWC) W 7-2; **Shriners Hospitals for Children College Classic at Houston, TX** vs. #10 Texas A&M (9-3, 0-0 SEC-W) L 9-0; vs. #9 Mississippi (7-4, 0-0 SEC-W) W 5-1; vs. #5 LSU (9-3, 0-0 SEC-W) W 5-4

15. South Carolina (7-5, 0-0 SEC-E) This week (5): vs. The Citadel (3-7, 0-0 Southern) 3/7; vs. Winthrop (5-6, 0-0 Big South) 3/8; vs. #17 Michigan State (9-1, 0-0 Big Ten) 3/10-12
(LW – 13) Last week (2-2): vs. Appalachian State (5-6, 0-0 Sun Belt) W 8-4; at/vs.**Fluor Field – Greenville, SC**/vs. #20 Clemson (8-3, 0-0 ACC-A) W 2-0, L 8-7, L 5-3 (11)

16. East Carolina (8-3, 0-0 AAC) This week (5): at College of Charleston (7-4, 0-0 CAA) 3/7-8; vs. Charlotte (9-3, 0-0 C-USA) 3/10-12
(LW – NR) Last week (4-0): vs. Elon (6-6, 0-0 CAA) W 7-2; **LeClair Classic at Greenville, NC** vs. Western Carolina (4-6, 0-0 Southern) W 5-4; vs. #25 St. John’s (10-1, 0-0 Big East) W 7-4; vs. Appalachian State (5-6, 0-0 Sun Belt) W 4-0

17. Michigan State (9-1, 0-0 Big Ten) This week (4): vs. #12 Clemson (8-3, 0-0 ACC-A) 3/8 **at Fluor Field, Greenville, SC**; at #15 South Carolina (7-5, 0-0 SEC-E) 3/10-12
(LW – 21) Last week (3-0): **First Pitch Invitational at Greenville, SC** at Furman (8-3, 0-0 Southern) W 3-2; vs. Presbyterian (6-7, 0-0 Big South) W 10-2; vs. Tennessee-Martin (5-4, 0-0 OVC) W 6-1

18. Saint Louis (10-1, 0-0 Atlantic 10) This week (4): at SIU Edwardsville (8-4, 0-0 OVC) 3/8; vs. Northern Illinois (2-9, 0-0 MAC-W) 3/10-12
(LW – 22) Last week (4-0): at Oklahoma State (6-5, 0-0 Big 12) W 10-7; vs. Fairleigh Dickinson (0-9, 0-0 Northeast) W 5-2, W 8-0, W 7-5

19. Wright State (7-4, 0-0 Horizon) This week (5): at Kentucky (7-5, 0-0 SEC-E) 3/7; **Dayton/Wright State Tournament at Dayton, OH** vs. Western Illinois (0-10, 0-0 Summit) 3/10; vs. Ohio (7-5, 0-0 MAC-E) 3/11; vs. Dayton (3-6, 0-0 Atlantic 10) 3/12
(LW – 23) Last week (4-1): at Gardner-Webb (5-8, 0-0 Big South) L 9-8, W 8-6; **Upstate/Wofford Tournament at Spartanburg, SC** at USC Upstate (5-8, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) W 5-1; at Wofford (3-8, 0-0 Southern) W 3-0; vs. Pittsburgh (7-4, 0-0 ACC-C) W 3-1

20. South Florida (10-1, 0-0 AAC) This week (5): vs. Jacksonville (6-6, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) 3/7; vs. Villanova (1-9, 0-0 Big East) 3/8; vs. Valparaiso (4-5, 0-0 Horizon) 3/10-12
(LW – 24) Last week (3-0): vs. Toledo (1-10, 0-0 MAC-W) W 4-3 (13), W 12-3, W 6-3

21. Mississippi (7-4, 0-0 SEC-W) This week (5): vs. Georgia State (6-4, 0-0 Sun Belt) 3/7-8; vs. Furman (8-3, 0-0 Southern) 3/10-12
(LW – 9) Last week (0-4): vs. Memphis (7-3, 0-0 AAC) L 9-6; **Shriners Hospitals for Children College Classic at Houston, TX** vs. #16 Baylor (11-1, 0-0 Big 12) L 4-0; vs. #18 Texas Tech (11-2, 0-0 Big 12) L 5-1; vs. #1 TCU (10-1, 0-0 Big 12) L 5-3

22. St. John’s (10-1, 0-0 Big East) This week (4): at Iona (3-3, 0-0 Metro Atlantic) 3/7; at Liberty (7-4, 0-0 Big South) 3/10-12
(LW – 25) Last week (3-1): at #11 North Carolina (9-3, 0-0 ACC-C) W 5-4; **LeClair Classic at Greenville, NC** vs. Appalachian State (5-6, 0-0 Sun Belt) W 7-3; at East Carolina (8-3, 0-0 AAC) L 7-4; vs. Western Carolina (4-5, 0-0 Southern) W 9-1

23. Louisiana-Lafayette (6-4, 0-0 Sun Belt) This week (4): at Tulane (3-8, 0-0 AAC) 3/7; vs. St. Peter’s (0-0, 0-0 Metro Atlantic) 3/10-12
(LW – NR) Last week (3-1): at Northwestern State (4-6, 0-0 Southland) W 8-6; vs. #14 Southern Mississippi (8-3, 0-0 C-USA) W 3-1, W 5-4, L 15-11 (11)

24. North Carolina (9-3, 0-0 ACC-C) This week (4): vs. VCU (6-5, 0-0 Atlantic 10) 3/7; vs. #8 Virginia (11-1, 0-0 ACC-C) 3/10-12
(LW – 11) Last week (2-3): vs. Winthrop (5-6, 0-0 Big South) W 11-0; vs. #25 St. John’s (10-1, 0-0 Big East) L 5-4; vs. Long Beach State (6-5, 0-0 Big West) L 5-2, L 4-1, W 8-5

25. Southern Mississippi (8-3, 0-0 C-USA) This week (4): at New Orleans (9-3, 0-0 Southland) 3/7; vs. Xavier (5-6, 0-0 Big East) 3/10-12
(LW – 14) Last week (2-2): vs. Tulane (3-8, 0-0 AAC) W 2-1; at Louisiana-Lafayette (6-4, 0-0 Sun Belt) L 3-1, L 5-4, W 15-11 (11)

Dropped Out: #12 North Carolina State, #15 Vanderbilt

Also Receiving Consideration:

Arkansas (8-3, 0-0 SEC-W), Auburn (9-3, 0-0 SEC-W), Charlotte (9-3, 0-0 C-USA), Coastal Carolina (9-5, 0-0 Sun Belt), Dallas Baptist (8-3, 0-0 MVC), Florida Gulf Coast (10-2, 0-0 Atlantic Sun), Georgia Tech (9-2, 0-0 ACC-C), Houston (7-3, 0-0 AAC), James Madison (8-2, 0-0 CAA), Kansas State (9-2, 0-0 Big 12), Louisiana Tech (11-1, 0-0 C-USA), Michigan (9-3, 0-0 Big Ten), Missouri (10-1, 0-0 SEC-E), Missouri State (10-1, 0-0 MVC), North Carolina State (6-5, 0-0 ACC-A), Saint Mary’s (7-3, 0-0 WCC), Sam Houston State (8-4, 0-0 Southland), Stanford (9-3, 0-0 PAC-12), Tennessee (9-1, 0-0 SEC-E), Vanderbilt (7-5, 0-0 SEC-E)

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