Falcons Host Northern Colorado and San Diego State

    Freshman Matthew Roberts.
    Freshman Matthew Roberts.

    April 5, 2010

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    Air Force (7-20, 1-4) vs. Northern Colo. (7-15)/San Diego St. (11-17, 1-5)

    Schedule
    vs. Northern Colorado
    Tuesday, April 6 - 3 p.m.
    vs. San Diego State
    Friday, April 9 - 2 p.m.
    Saturday, April 10 - 1 p.m.
    Sunday, April 11 - 12 p.m.
    - All four games at Falcon Field - USAF Academy, Colo.

    Internet Radio/Live Stats:
    - Live stats and internet radio available at goairforcefalcons.com for all four games.

    The Coaches:
    AF: Mike Hutcheon (Wayne State (Neb.), 1984) is 72-265 in his 7th year at Air Force and 311-405 in his 16th year as a head coach.
    UNC: Kevin Smallcomb (Sacramento St., 1985) is 168-226 in his eighth year at UNC.
    SDSU: Tony Gwynn (SDSU) is 225-230 in his eighth year at SDSU.

    Series:
    vs. UNC: UNC leads, 91-53
    vs. SDSU: SDSU leads, 77-15

    Last Meeting:
    - vs. UNC: UNC won 7-6 on April 29, 2009 at the Academy.
    - vs. SDSU: SDSU swept three-game series May 8-10, 2009 in San Diego.

    Last Time Out:
    Air Force: Was swept in a three game series at Utah over the weekend.
    UNC: Swept Montana State-Billings in a three game series over the weekend.
    SDSU: Went 1-2 vs. #13 TCU over the weekend.

    Falcons Host Northern Colorado and San Diego State
    The Air Force baseball team plays four home games this week at Falcon Field. The Falcons host Northern Colorado on Tues., April 6 and then a three-game set vs. San Diego State Fri.-Sun., April 9-11. Internet radio and live stats will be available for all four games.

    2010 Falcons
    - The Falcons return six starters and 12 letterwinners.
    - Air Force welcomes 17 newcomers, including 10 pitchers to the team.
    - Senior first baseman Addison Gentry leads the Falcon hitters, batting .306 with seven homers and 37 RBIs.
    - Senior right-hander Alex Truesdale leads the Falcon pitching staff with a 2-4 record, 8.80 ERA to go with 38 strikeouts in 45.0 innings pitched.
    - The Falcons are batting .303 as a team and fielding .963. The pitching staff has a 10.24 ERA.

    Scouting Northern Colorado
    Northern Colorado enters the week with a 7-15 record. The Bears are led offensively by senior catcher Seth Budde who is batting .325 with 20 RBIs. Senior left-hander James Quisenberry (0-2, 9.95) is slated to start vs. AFA. UNC is batting .281, fielding .959 and has a team ERA of 7.73.

    Series History vs. UNC
    - Air Force and Northern Colorado have played each other 144 times.
    - Air Force is 53-91 all time against Northern Colorado.
    - The two teams first met on March 22, 1957 where the Bears of Colorado State College defeated the Falcons, 13-3.

    Scouting San Diego State
    San Diego State enters the week with a 11-17 record. The Aztecs are led offensively by junior outfielder Cory Vaughn, who is batting .320 with four homers and 28 RBIs. Vaughn is the son of former MLB standout Greg Vaughn. SDSU's top pitcher is junior RHP Addison Reed, who is 4-1 with 36 strikeouts in 33.1 innings to go with a 2.70 ERA. San Diego State is batting .273, fielding .957 and has a team ERA of 5.06.

    Series History
    - Air Force and San Diego State have played each other 91 times.
    - The Aztecs lead the series 77-15.
    - San Diego State has won 28 straight games in the series.
    - Air Force's last win over San Diego State came on April 26, 2003, a 3-0 win at the Academy.
    - The two teams first met on April 1, 1961, where the Aztecs won, 6-3.
    (Game-by-game breakdown of series on page 6).

    AF-SDSU Connections
    - Air Force has six players on its roster from California, the most of any state.

    Recapping Utah Series
    Air Force went 0-3 vs. Utah last weekend. The Falcons dropped game one 13-4, game two 7-3 and game three 8-6.

    - The Falcons batted .218 in the series, fielded .961 and had a 9.75 ERA.
    - Matthew Roberts was AFA's leading hitter, going 5-for-10 for a .500 average.
    - Addison Gentry added a grand slam and six RBIs in the series.
    - Kincaid Koehler was AFA's top starter, pitching 7.2 innings and striking out three in the game two start.

    Gentry Leads MWC In Homers and RBIs
    Senior first baseman Addison Gentry leads the Mountain West Conference with seven homers and 37 RBIs. Gentry hit nine homers as a junior and drove in 40. Gentry ranks in the MWC top 10 in nine different categories.

    Custons Has Monster Game vs. Colorado Christian
    Freshman outfielder/catcher Garrett Custons had one of the biggest offensive games in Air Force history on March 30 vs. Colorado Christian. Custons went 6-for-7 with two doubles, two homers and nine RBIs.

    The six hits are second most in a game in Air Force history and third most in Mountain West Conference history. The nine RBIs are third most in school history and fourth all-time in MWC record book. His fourteen total bases are the second most in AFA history and fourth in MWC history.

    Home/Road Splits
    Air Force has put up significantly better offensive numbers in its nine home games this year, compared to its 18 games away from Falcon Field. The Falcons are batting 136 points highter at home and slugging 315 points higher. Conversley, Air Force's pitching staff ERA is 1.65 points lower on the road.

    Fast Falcons
    Air Force features one of the fastest teams in the nation in terms of triples and stolen bases. The Falcons lead the Mountain West in both triples and stolen bases. The Falcons are averaging 0.59 triples per game, which puts just behind their 0.62 triples per game average in 2008, which led the nation. Junior Nathan Carter leads the conference with five triples and freshman Garrett Custons is second in the conference with 13 stolen bases.

    Carter Ties School Triples Mark
    Junior outfielder Nathan Carter hit his 20th career triple vs. TCU to tie the school record, also held by Vern Mullis. Carter currently leads the MWC with five triples. As a freshman, Carter led the nation with 10 triples.

    Youngsters Leading Team In Hitting
    A sophomore and two freshmen are leading Air Force in batting average so far in 2010. Sophomore Blair Roberts leads the team with a .411 average. Freshman Matthew Roberts is second second with a .358 average and fellow rookie Garrett Custons is third with a .354 average. Custons also leads Air Force with 40 hits, 28 runs and 13 stolen bases.

    Experienced But Inexperienced Team
    In many ways, the Air Force baseball team is very experienced. But in many ways, they are very inexperienced. The Falcons return several four-year starters but also welcome a large freshman class.

    - Four-year starters/top pitchers - 4/1
    - Freshmen with 13+ starts - 5
    - Freshmen to start on mound/games - 14/27

    Percentage of starts by class
    Seniors 40.8
    Juniors 10.7
    Sophomores 4.9
    Freshmen 43.6

    Percentage of pitching starts by class
    Seniors 33.3
    Juniors -
    Sophomores 14.8,br> Freshmen 51.9

    All New Falcon Field
    Falcon Field, home of Air Force baseball, underwent several upgrades in time for the 2010 season. The entire playing surface, except for a dirt mound is now comprised of synthetic FieldTurf. Falcon Field formerly had a grass outfield and dirt around the bases and home plate of the synthetic turf infield.

    Listed below are the new upgrades to Falcon Field
    - New all-weather synthetic FieldTurf.
    - New fencing suffrounding entire field.
    - New padding behind home plate.
    - New hitters eye.
    - New benches in the home dugout.
    - New protective fencing in front of both dugouts.

    Alexander Named Preseason All-American
    Air Force senior designated hitter/first baseman Matt Alexander was named to the Ping! Baseball 2010 Preseason All-American Team. Alexander, who batted .383 with 15 home runs and 65 RBIs as a junior, was named third-team All-American as a designated hitter.

    One of the top hitters in the Mountain West Conference as a junior, Alexander led the conference in RBIs and was second in home runs and slugging percentage (.710). In 2009, Alexander was a First Team Pro-Line NCBWA All-American and one of 16 semifinalists for the Dick Howser Trophy, given to the nation's top collegiate player (one of two players from the MWC, joining Howser Trophy winner Stephen Strasburg of San Diego State). Alexander, a native of Oak Park, Calif., also garnered 2009 Third Team Ping! Baseball All-American honors.

    Entering 2009, Alexander is Air Force's top returner in terms of career hits (184), batting average (.323), homers (25), RBIs (147) and games played (152).

    Truesdale fans 12 vs. Hawai'i
    Senior right-hander Alex Truesdale stuck out a career-high 12 batters vs. Hawai'i. He became the first Falcon to reach double-figures in strikeouts since Mitch Brown struck out 11 in 2006 and the first with 12 since Michael Tufte did so in 2001.

    Plenty of Experience Returning For Falcons
    Air Force returns five seniors and six starters to the field in 2009. The five seniors are the most at the Academy since 2003. Four starters are three-year starters (Alexander, Ausbun, Gentry, Randhawa) and junior Nathan Carter is a two-year starter. Senior RHP Alex Truesdale is a fourth-year starter on the mound.

    17 Freshmen Join Falcons
    On the flip side of all that experience, Air Force also welcomes 17 freshmen, four of which are slated to start. The 2010 class features nine pitchers, including two left-handers. Six members of the freshman class also hail from Florida.

    California, Florida and Texas Well Represented
    The Air Force baseball staff has done a solid effort at recruiting the talent hot-beds of California, Florida and Texas as 18 of the 29 players on the roster are from those three states. Six players hail from both California and Texas and six freshmen from Florida join the Falcons in 2010.

    2010 Preseason Accolades

    Sr. DH Matt Alexander
    - Ping!Baseball Preseason All-American, 3rd Team
    - Preseason All-Mountain West Conference Team
    - Best Pure Hitter (One of top 3) in MWC as voted by conference coaches at Collegebaseballinsider.com

    Sr. 1B Addison Gentry
    - Baseball America Preseason All-MWC
    - Preseason All-Mountain West Conference Team

    Fr. RHP Sean Carley
    - Baseball America Fifth Best MWC Newcomer

    Up Next
    Air Force plays five road games next week. The Falcons travel to Northern Colorado on April 13 and then play four games in three days, April 15-18, at Georgia State.

     

     

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