Valdosta Daily Times

Blazers Blog

February 18, 2014

Blazers ranked No. 4

VALDOSTA — Valdosta State’s undefeated start hasn’t gone unnoticed.

The Blazers, who were ranked No. 21 in the Collegiate Baseball preseason poll, shot all the way to No. 4 when the new rankings were released Monday.

Valdosta State improved to 9-0 by sweeping Shorter this weekend in the Gulf South Conference-opening series. And the Blazers aren’t just winning, they have demolished their opponents so far, outscoring them 102-20.

VSU has 426 points in the poll, just 12 points behind Minnesota State-Mankato in third place and 18 points ahead of fifth-ranked Southern Arkansas. Tampa, the defending Division II national champion, remains at No. 1 following its 7-1 start. West Florida, which is off to an 8-2 start moved up two spots to No. 2. The Argonauts host the Blazers this weekend in an early GSC showdown.

Valdosta State will enter that battle of national heavyweights with an offense that has been red hot. The Blazers are hitting .348 collectively as eight of their nine regulars are batting at least .300. Reigning GSC Player of the Week Mike Reed paces the deep lineup as he is 17 for 30 on the year, hitting .567 with 14 runs, 16 RBIs and seven stolen bases. Preseason All-American Bryant Hayman has 19 RBIs and three of the Blazers’ four home runs, while preseason all-GSC selection Matthew Fears has also swiped seven bases and has scored 16 runs. Michael Gouge, who has the other VSU home run, has 13 runs scored.

The Blazers have also gotten it done on the mound as ace Dom DeMasi has tossed 17 2-3 scoreless innings with 17 strikeouts, while left-handed starter Josh Mann has a 1.17 ERA in 15 1-3 innings across three starts with 19 strikeouts.

Other GSC foes ranked are Delta State, which has fallen from No. 8 to No. 16 after a 3-3 start, and Alabama-Huntsville moving into the rankings at No. 23 with a 7-3 mark. Florida Tech, ranked No. 8, and Nova Southeastern, ranked No. 9, are other South Region teams in the top 10.

1
Text Only
Blazers Blog
  • Nolin settling in as new VSU soccer coach

    Meet Rebecca Nolin, VSU's new soccer coach.

    July 28, 2014

  • Grable signs with Tampa Bay

    Another former Valdosta State football player joined the ranks of the National Football League when linebacker Jeremy Grable signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Wednesday morning.

    July 23, 2014

  • Bubba Walker promoted to defensive coordinator

    Valdosta State Linebacker Coach Bubba Walker has been promoted to fill the open posiiton of defensive coordinator for the Blazer football team according to an announcement made by VSU Head Coach David Dean Thursday.

    July 18, 2014

  • Albritton wins NCAA Elite 89

    Courtney Albritton's tremendous 2013-2014 season earned her one more award Thursday night when the Valdosta State softball star won the NCAA's Favorite Elite 89 Winner contest by securing the more votes than any other student-athlete.

    July 17, 2014

  • Justin Roper named Valdosta State quarterbacks coach

    Valdosta State’s hirin of Justin Roper as quarterbacks coach, previously reported by The Times, was officially announced by the school and Blazer head football coach David Dean on Wednesday.

    July 17, 2014

  • Albritton.JPG VSU’s Albritton advances to finals of Elite 89 contest

    Another round, another first-place finish for Valdosta State’s Courtney Albritton.
    Albritton, the Blazers’ junior softball standout, was the leading vote-getter in the semifinal round of the NCAA’s Favorite Elite 89 winner contest with 1,483 votes in the two-day semifinal round that included 30 athletes. In the week-long first round, Albritton racked up 1,971 votes to lead the 89-person field.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Albritton in first place after opening round of Elite 89 voting

    July 14, 2014

  • Justin_Roper.JPG Roper to coach Blazers’ QBs

    Valdosta State has added an assistant coach to its staff, but it isn’t to fill Seth Wallace’s role.
    Former Oregon quarterback and University of Findlay running backs coach Justin Roper has been hired as the Blazers’ quarterbacks coach.

    July 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Div II Championship F_Rodg(11).jpg Beyond Sports Network releases 2014 preseason All-GSC football team

    Football season is right around the corner; exactly 57 days from now Valdosta State set to open its season at home against Albany State, but fans were able to satisfy his or her football withdraws on Tuesday when Beyond Sports Network released its Gulf South Conference preseason All-Conference team.

    July 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • 1966690_10201768896480524_387489323_n.jpg Dominique Wheeler showing confidence as NFL rookie

    Dominique Wheeler slowly made a name for himself during his four-year career as a Valdosta State Blazer. Playing at the cornerback position, Wheeler had to wait his turn to start at the position. However by the time he ended his senior year, he had played in 45 games, including nine starts his senior season.

    July 7, 2014 2 Photos

Local Sports
Choose your subscription: