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2017 Week 6 College Baseball Top-25

March 20, 2017

While Oregon State and Louisville remain 1-2 in this week’s rankings, Missouri has matched the Cardinals’ winning streak at 19 games, causing spontaneous celebrations in Mizzou Nation. (photo courtesy of University of Missouri Athletics/mutigers.com

With a third of the 2017 regular season in the books, it’s safe to say that a pair of teams have separated themselves from the rest of the nation while two of the premier conferences are shaking their collective heads in amazement after a trio of College World Series hopefuls took shocking sweeps over the weekend.

Oregon State paces the college baseball world for a second consecutive week after dispatching Arizona State with ease, 2-0, 10-1 and 4-0, on the road at Phoenix Muni Stadium. The Beavers’ starting trifecta of Luke Heimlich, Bryce Fehmel and Jake Thompson pitched as if they were Maddux, Glavine and Smoltz from the heyday of the 1990’s Atlanta Braves, allowing a total of eight hits and one run over 23.1 innings while fanning 20 Sun Devils hitters. SS Cadyn Grenier led the way at the plate, hitting .538 (7-for-13) with a double, a home run and two RBI.

Louisville, the lone undefeated team in the nation, sits right behind Oregon State after a 4-0 week. The Cardinals blasted Xavier, 13-4, before sweeping ACC foe Boston College at Patterson Stadium 6-0, 6-4 and 5-3. In the win over the Musketeers, SS Devin Hairston went 4-for-4 with a double, three RBI and three runs scored while freshman Jake Snyder had an interesting day at the dish. The PH/DH went 0-for-3, but scored a run and drove in two others. Brendan McKay opened the series against the Eagles in style, running his record to 5-0 with seven shutout innings and fanning 12. Kade McClure allowed a run on four hits over eight innings to get the Saturday decision and Colin Lyman drove in a pair to clinch the series sweep on Sunday.

LSU moves up to third after a 4-1 week that included a sweep of Georgia at Alex Box Stadium. The Tigers filled an open date on Tuesday with Division-3 Louisiana College and proceeded to blank the Wildcats 13-0. New Orleans wasn’t as gracious as guests the next evening, pinning a 7-4 loss on the hosts. The six-time College World Series champs righted the ship over the weekend against the visiting Bulldogs, taking the series 22-9, 5-1 and 7-6. Despite going 0-for-3 on Sunday, RF Antoine Duplantis had a monster weekend, hitting .615 (8-for-13) and driving in ten runs, including seven on Friday during his 6-for-6 night at the dish. Jared Poche’ offered the pitching highlight for LSU, moving to 5-0 after a seven-inning stint in which he allowed seven hits and a run in the Saturday victory.

Despite a 2-2 week, TCU slips, only, one spot to fourth. The Horned Frogs were blanked at Long Beach State, 7-0, and won their weekend series with Kansas, opening their 2017 Big 12 schedule with two straight wins, 3-1 and 5-1 before dropping the Sunday finale at Lupton Stadium. In the series opener, TCU rallied with single runs in the final three innings to make a winner of reliever Sean Wymer and Jared Janczak ran his record to 5-0 with a brilliant 2-hit, 14-strikeout outing to clinch the series on Saturday. The Jayhawks took the Sunday matchup on 1B Owen Taylor’s solo home run in the top half of the ninth for a 4-3 Kansas victory.

Clemson jumps three spots to fifth after a 4-1 week at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. The Tigers overcame shaky midweek pitching to sweep Yale, 10-6 and 10-8 and took two of three from Virginia over the weekend. In the mid-week opener, Monte Lee’s squad squandered an early 4-0 lead as the Bulldogs scored six in the top half of the fifth inning, but C Chris Williams’ 3-run blast in the seventh frame put the hosts ahead to stay. Williams was the offensive hero, again, on Wednesday, with a 2-run homer and a 2-run double that plated the eventual winning run. Virginia’s Daniel Lynch stymied the Tigers in the ACC opener for both clubs, allowing four hits over 7.2 innings in a 2-0 decision for the visitors, but the hosts rebounded in the final two games of the series. Clemson scored six runs in the bottom of the first and held off a furious rally to win 7-6 on Saturday and used 3-for-5 games with two RBI, each, from 2B Jordan Greene and SS Logan Davidson to back Pat Krall’s seven strong innings on the bump for a 12-1 series finale victory.

Texas Tech posted a 3-1 week to climb four spots to sixth. The Red Raiders managed, only, a run on two hits in a mid-week loss to UT Arlington at Globe Life Ballpark before heading south to Austin for the weekend, where their fortunes changed. On Friday, David Martin allowed one run and two hits over 6.1 innings and Michael Berglund laced an RBI double in a 2-1 win over Texas at UFCU DischFaulk Field. Steven Gingery allowed two hits and an unearned run in six innings of work and Berglund delivered the eventual game-winning RBI on Saturday as Tech won, again, 2-1, to pick up the series win. The visitors completed the sweep with an 8-5 victory that featured three RBI from Hunter Hargrove and three perfect innings of close-out relief by Dylan Dusek.

With a win over Maryland and a series win at Georgia Tech, North Carolina jumps five places to seventh, giving the ACC three teams in the top-seven. 1B Zack Gahagan launched a 2-run homer and DH Ashton McGee added a 3-run blast to lead the Heels to a 9-2 win over their former conference foe, the Terrapins, at Boshamer Stadium on Tuesday. In the weekend opener at venerable Russ Chandler Stadium, SS Logan Warmoth’s solo homer in the ninth gave UNC the insurance run they needed as the Yellow Jackets stranded the potential game-tying run at second in a 6-5 Heels victory. While 1B Kel Johnson tied the series for Georgia Tech with a walk-off 2-run homer in the 12th for a 4-2 decision on Saturday, the Heels secured the series win by rallying for four runs over the final two frames to take the finale 7-4.

2016 College World Series runner-up Arizona limped to a 2-2 road week and slides two notches to eighth. Four Cal State Fullerton pitchers blanked the Wildcats on three hits in a 4-0 final at Goodwin Field, the second straight mid-week loss for Arizona. In the series opener at Jackie Robinson Stadium that was suspended Friday night by fog one hour after the first pitch, the Wildcats pummeled UCLA 19-4 as 3B Nick Quintana, CF Jared Oliva and 1B/2B J.J. Matijevic combined to go 10-for-17 with a double, two triples, a home run, 11 RBI and eight runs scored. Later Saturday, Cameron Cannon scored on a ninth-inning throwing error to give the Wildcats a 4-3 win and the series victory. Arizona was poised for a series sweep, but blew a 7-5 lead in the ninth and lost 8-7 in ten innings as UCLA 2B Jake Hirabayaski scored on a wild pitch.

South Carolina ran its winning streak to seven games and moves from 14th to 9th with a series sweep over SEC foe Tennessee at Lindsey Nelson Stadium in Knoxville. C Chris Cullen and RF Jacob Olson homered and Adam Hill pitched six strong innings for his first win of the season in a 7-1 Gamecock victory on Friday. Despite scratching out, only four hits on Saturday, South Carolina took the series 6-4 in ten innings as 3B Jonah Bride walked with the bases loaded in the extra frame, followed, immediately, by Olsen being hit by a Jon Lipinski pitch. The Gamecocks left no doubt in the series finale, scoring seven runs in the fifth in a 10-2 rout.

Oklahoma, which leads the nation in victories with 21, inches up one spot to round out the top ten. Making a swing through Georgia the Sooners opened their week with a 2-0 loss at Georgia Tech, followed by a 5-4 win at Georgia State. At Stillwell Stadium, Oklahoma swept Kennesaw State 5-2, 17-9 and 14-4. Jake Irvin improved to 5-0 in the opener vs. the Owls, allowing six hits and two runs, one earned, in the victory. OF Steele Walker homered and drive in five and RF Blake Brewster homered twice and drove in three to lead Oklahoma to the Saturday victory while Dominic DeRenzo homered, drove in three and scored three times to help his club to the series sweep on Sunday.

After falling seven spots last week, Central Florida takes advantage of the volatile week to reclaim six spots to 11th. South Florida took four games from Harvard to move from 18th to 12th, Virginia, despite losing two of four games, inches up two to 13th, Mississippi lands in 14th after a series win over Vanderbilt and Florida Gulf Coast vaults eight places as they improved to 18-3 with a win over Florida State and sweeping Rutgers.

Cal State Fullerton, unranked last week, returns to the rankings at #16 after a 5-0 week that included a win over Arizona and a three-game sweep of the MWC’s top dog, New Mexico. Florida State stumbled to a 1-4 week and drops 12 t0 17th and St. John’s battled the weather to win a pair of games and moves up to 18th. Auburn swept Florida as part of a 5-0 week to debut at #19 and Southern Mississippi moved up four to 20th after sweeping Columbia and winning three at Louisiana Tech.

Wright State swept Valparaiso to move from 25th to 21st, Kentucky’s 4-0 week included a road sweep of Texas A&M and a top-25 debut of #22 and Baylor dropped two of four games, including a series loss to West Virginia, and drops 16 places to 23rd. Riding a school record-tying 19 game winning streak. Missouri cracks the top-25 at #24 and Wake Forest makes its season debut, following a 3-1 week, at #25.

#9 Texas A&M and #13 Florida, both swept in their 2017 conference-opening series, dropped out of the rankings as did #16 East Carolina, #20 Saint Louis and #22 Louisiana-Lafayette.

1. Oregon State (17-1, 3-0 PAC-12) This week (3): vs. #8 Arizona (15-4, 2-1 PAC-12) 3/24-26
(LW – 1) Last week (3-0): at Arizona State (9-10, 0-2 PAC-12) W 2-0, W 10-1, W 4-0

2. Louisville (19-0, 6-0 ACC-A) This week (4): at Cincinnati (9-9, 0-0 AAC) 3/21; at North Carolina State (12-9, 3-3 ACC-A) 3/24-26
(LW – 2) Last week (4-0): vs. Xavier (10-10, 0-0 Big East) W 13-4; vs. Boston College (6-11, 1-5 ACC-A) W 4-0, W 6-4, W 5-3

3. LSU (16-5, 3-0 SEC-W) This week (4): vs. Southeastern Louisiana (14-5, 5-1 Southland) 3/22; at Florida (13-8, 0-3 SEC-E) 3/24-26
(LW – 4) Last week (4-1): vs. Louisiana College (14-7, 5-4 ASC-D3) W 13-0; vs. New Orleans (13-7, 3-3 Southland) L 7-4; vs. Georgia (8-13, 0-3 SEC-E) W 22-9, W 5-1, W 7-6

4. TCU (14-5, 2-1 Big 12) This week (4): at Abilene Christian (9-10, 1-5 Southland) 3/21; vs. Oklahoma State (14-6, 0-0 Big 12) 3/24-26
(LW – 3) Last week (2-2): at Long Beach State (10-8, 0-0 Big West) L 7-0; vs. Kansas (9-10, 1-2 Big 12) W 3-1, W 5-1, L 4-3

5. Clemson (16-4, 5-1 ACC-A) This week (4): at College of Charleston (8-12, 0-0 CAA) 3/21; at Boston College (6-11, 1-5 ACC-A) 3/24-26
(LW – 8) Last week (4-1): vs. Yale (5-9, 0-0 Ivy-Rolfe) W 10-6, W 10-8; vs. #15 Virginia (15-5, 2-4 ACC-C) L 2-0, W 7-6, W 12-1

6. Texas Tech (17-4, 3-0 Big 12) This week (5): vs. UNLV (10-11, 5-4 MWC) 3/21-22; at Wichita State (11-8, 0-0 MVC) 3/24-26
(LW – 10) Last week (3-1): at UT Arlington (11-10, 2-1 Sun Belt) L 5-1 **Globe Life Ballpark – Arlington, TX**; at Texas (13-9, 0-3 Big 12) W 2-1, W 2-1, W 8-5

7. North Carolina (15-5, 4-2 ACC-C) This week (4): at East Carolina (13-7, 0-0 AAC) 3/22; vs. Miami-FL (9-11, 3-3 ACC-C) 3/24-26
(LW – 12) Last week (3-1): vs. Maryland (12-6, 0-0 Big Ten) W 9-2; at Georgia Tech (12-6, 2-4 ACC-C) W 6-5, L 4-2 (12), W 7-4

8. Arizona (15-4, 2-1 PAC-12) This week (4): vs. New Mexico State (11-8, 0-0 WAC) 3/21; at #1 Oregon State (17-1, 3-0 PAC-12) 3/24-26
(LW – 6) Last week (2-2): at Cal State Fullerton (14-5, 0-0 Big West) L 4-0; at UCLA (7-11, 1-2 PAC-12) W 19-4, W 4-3, L 8-7 (10)

9. South Carolina (14-5, 3-0 SEC-E) This week (4): vs. Charleston Southern (11-6, 1-2 Big South) 3/22; vs. Alabama (10-10, 0-3 SEC-W) 3/24-26
(LW – 14) Last week (3-0): at Furman (10-8, 0-0 Southern) PPD; at Tennessee (12-5, 0-3 SEC-E) W 7-1, W 6-4 (10), W 10-2

10. Oklahoma (21-3, 0-0 Big 12) This week (4): at Oklahoma State (14-6, 0-0 Big 12) 3/21; at #23 Baylor (16-4, 1-2 Big 12) 3/24-26
(LW – 11) Last week (4-1): at Georgia Tech (12-6, 2-4 ACC-C) L 2-0; at Georgia State (10-10, 1-2 Sun Belt) W 5-4; at Kennesaw State (8-11, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) W 5-2, W 17-9, W 14-4

11. Central Florida (17-4, 0-0 AAC) This week (4): at Bethune-Cookman (14-6, 4-2 MEAC) 3/21; vs. Dartmouth (6-4, 0-0 Ivy-Rolfe) 3/24-26
(LW – 17) This week (3-1): vs. Bradley (6-11, 0-0 MVC) W 12-9; vs. Jacksonville (11-11, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) W 4-0, W 10-3, L 7-1

12. South Florida (19-1, 0-0 AAC) This week (5): vs. North Florida (14-7, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) 3/21; at #15 Florida Gulf Coast (18-3, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) 3/22; vs. Florida A&M (14-5, 5-1 MEAC) 3/24-26
(LW – 18) Last week (4-0): vs. Harvard (7-7, 0-0 Ivy-Rolfe) W 8-2, W 4-1 (7), W 8-6, W 14-2

13. Virginia (15-5, 2-4 ACC-C) This week (5): vs. Towson (8-5, 0-0 CAA) 3/21-22; vs. Duke (11-11, 3-3 ACC-C) 3/24-26
(LW – 15) Last week (2-2): vs. Monmouth (3-13, 0-0 Metro Atlantic) W 10-0; at #8 Clemson (16-4, 5-1 ACC-A) W 2-0, L 7-6, L 12-1

14. Mississippi (14-6, 2-1 SEC-W) This week (4): at Memphis (12-7, 0-0 AAC) 3/21; at #22 Kentucky (15-6, 3-0 SEC-E) 3/23-25
(LW – 19) Last week (3-1): vs. Nicholls State (12-8, 5-1 Southland) W 5-0 **at Biloxi, MS**; vs. Vanderbilt (13-8, 1-2 SEC-E) W 1-0, L 6-2, W 10-8

15. Florida Gulf Coast (18-3, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) This week (4): vs. #12 South Florida (19-1, 0-0 AAC) 3/22; vs. Jackson State (15-8, 6-3 SWAC-E) 3/24-26
(LW – 23) Last week (4-0): vs. #5 Florida State (14-7, 3-2 ACC-A) W 5-2; vs. Rutgers (6-13, 0-0 Big Ten) W 5-2, W 13-4, W 8-3

16. Cal State Fullerton (14-5, 0-0 Big West) This week (4): at San Diego (13-4, 3-0 WCC) 3/21; at Long Beach State (10-8, 0-0 Big West) 3/24-26
(LW – NR) Last week (5-0): vs. San Jose State (9-9, 5-4 MWC) W 6-1; vs. #6 Arizona (15-4, 2-1 PAC-12) W 4-0; vs. New Mexico (11-8, 6-0 MWC) W 2-1, 5-4, 1-0

17. Florida State (14-7, 3-3 ACC-A) This week (4): vs. Jacksonville (11-11, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) 3/21; at Notre Dame (6-12, 2-4 ACC-A) 3/24-26
(LW – 5) Last week (1-4): at #13 Florida (13-8, 0-3 SEC-E) L 1-0; at #23 Florida Gulf Coast (18-3, 0-0 Atlantic Sun) L 5-2; at Virginia Tech (13-9, 3-3 ACC-C) W 9-2, L 13-2, L 17-0

18. St. John’s (14-2, 0-0 Big East) This week (5): at Fairfield (5-10, 0-0 Metro Atlantic) 3/21; vs. St. Peter’s (0-4, 0-0 Metro Atlantic) 3/22; vs. Maine (6-10, 0-0 America East) 3/25-26
(LW – 21) Last week (2-0): at New York Tech (2-13, 0-0 IND) PPD; vs. Holy Cross (3-11, 0-0 Patriot) CCD, CCD, CCD; **at Norfolk, VA** vs. Iona (5-7, 0-0 Metro Atlantic) W 4-3, vs. UMass Lowell (9-7, 0-0 America East) W 6-3; vs. Towson (8-5, 0-0 CAA) CCD

19. Auburn (17-5, 3-0 SEC-W) This week (4): at Georgia Tech (12-6, 2-4 ACC-C) 3/21; at Georgia (8-13, 0-3 SEC-E) 3/24-26
(LW – NR) Last week (5-0): vs. UAB (13-7, 2-1 C-USA) W 4-0; vs. Jacksonville State (10-9, 2-4 OVC) W 10-1; vs. #13 Florida (13-8, 0-3 SEC-E) W 14-3, W 2-1, W 6-5

20. Southern Mississippi (16-4, 3-0 C-USA) This week (4): vs. Mississippi State (12-9, 0-3 SEC-W) 3/21 **at Pearl, MS**; vs. Marshall (10-7, 2-1 C-USA) 3/24-26
(LW – 24) Last week (5-0): vs. Columbia (1-11, 0-0 Ivy-Gehrig) W 4-3, W 20-5; at Louisiana Tech (15-5, 0-3 C-USA) W 5-2, W 13-9, W 8-5

21. Wright State (12-6, 3-0 Horizon) This week (4): at Xavier (10-10, 0-0 Big East) 3/21; vs. Milwaukee (7-11, 0-3 Horizon) 3/24-26
(LW – 25) Last week (3-0): vs. Cincinnati (9-9, 0-0 AAC) PPD; vs. Valparaiso (6-11, 0-3 Horizon) W 2-1, W 6-1, W 7-0

22. Kentucky (15-6, 3-0 SEC-E) This week (4): at Western Kentucky (7-15, 1-2 C-USA) 3/21; vs. #14 Mississippi (14-6, 2-1 SEC-W) 3/23-25
(LW – NR) Last week (4-0): vs. Murray State (11-8, 3-3 OVC) W 9-7; at #9 Texas A&M (14-7, 0-3 SEC-W) W 6-0, W 7-6, W 11-7

23. Baylor (16-4, 1-2 Big 12) This week (4): vs. Dallas Baptist (13-6, 0-0 MVC) 3/21; vs. #10 Oklahoma (21-3, 0-0 Big 12) 3/24-26
(LW – 7) Last week (2-2): at Dallas Baptist (13-6, 0-0 MVC) W 4-1; vs. West Virginia (10-8, 2-1 Big 12) L 7-1, L 6-5, W 5-1

24. Missouri (19-1, 3-0 SEC-E) This week (4): vs. Arkansas-Little Rock (8-12, 1-2 Sun Belt) 3/21; vs. Arkansas (17-4, 3-0 SEC-W 3/24-26
(LW – NR) Last week (4-0): vs. Chicago State (4-12, 0-0 WAC) W 7-6; at Alabama (10-10, 0-3 SEC-W) W 3-0, W 7-4, W 9-5

25. Wake Forest (15-6, 4-2 ACC-A) This week (4): at Charlotte (13-7, 2-1 C-USA) 3/21 **at BB&T Ballpark – Charlotte, NC**; vs. Georgia Tech (12-6, 2-4 ACC-C) 3/24-26
(LW – NR) Last week (3-1): vs. High Point (9-9, 1-2 Big South) W 18-8; at Duke (11-11, 3-3 ACC-C) W 8-4, L 7-3, W 11-2

Dropped Out: #9 Texas A&M, #13 Florida, #16 East Carolina, #20 Saint Louis, #22 Louisiana-Lafayette

Next in line: McNeese State, San Diego, Mercer, Sam Houston State, Stanford

Also Receiving Consideration:

Arkansas (17-4, 3-0 SEC-W), East Carolina (13-7, 0-0 AAC), Florida (13-8, 0-3 SEC-E), Florida A&M (14-5, 5-1 MEAC-S), Houston (13-5, 0-0 AAC), James Madison (14-4, 0-0 CAA), Louisiana-Lafayette (11-6, 2-1 Sun Belt), Kansas State (14-6, 0-0 Big 12), McNeese State (15-5, 6-0 Southland), Mercer (17-4, 0-0 Southern), Michigan (15-4, 0-0 Big Ten), Oklahoma State (14-6, 0-0 Big 12), Saint Louis (15-4, 0-0 Atlantic 10), Sam Houston State (15-5, 6-0 Southland), San Diego (13-4, 3-0 WCC), Stanford (11-5, 0-0 PAC-12), Texas A&M (14-7, 0-3 SEC-W), UC Irvine (11-6, 0-0 Big West), Vanderbilt (13-8, 1-2 SEC-E), Washington (12-6, 3-0 PAC-12)

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