[UPDATE: Thu. 3/1 9:00 p.m. CST] Nebraska is snowed in, and can't leave until Friday morning. They've changed their schedule, and now will play Notre Dame on Saturday, Iowa on Sunday and Stetson on Monday. Tony Watson will now face the Irish, Drew Bowman will face the Hawkeyes, and Johnny Dorn will take on Stetson.
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Nebraska travels to the state of Florida for the first time in Husker baseball history tomorrow. They'll take on Iowa in the Friday game, and then play Notre Dame and host Stetson on Saturday.
The venue that the tournament is hosted at is eight-year old Melching Field, one of the top 30 or so college ballparks in the country. Melching consistently draws fans, averaging over 50,000 a year. That may sound like small potatoes compared to the 122,000 that Nebraska drew last year, but the Huskers ranked 5th in the NCAA in attendance in 2006.
Melching Field in DeLand, Fla.
A tornado hit DeLand back on Feb. 2nd, destroying hundreds of homes. The only damage to the university was an athletics department storage shed.
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Friday, March 2 vs. Iowa (1-1) 12 p.m.
Nebraska - Tony Watson, Jr., LHP (1-0, 1.50 ERA, 4K, 6.0 IP)
Iowa - Steve Turnbull, So., RHP (0-0, 4.50 ERA, 4 K, 4 IP)
Saturday, March 3 vs. Notre Dame (2-4) 2 p.m.
Nebraska - Drew Bowman, So., LHP (1-0, 3.00 ERA, 7 K, 9.0 IP)
Notre Dame - Wade Korpi, Jr., LHP (1-1, 3.72 ERA, 8 K, 9.2 IP)
Saturday, March 3 at Stetson (9-3) 6 p.m.
Nebraska - Johnny Dorn, Jr., RHP (1-1, 5.73 ERA, 9 K, 11.0 IP)
Stetson - Chris Ingoglia, Sr., LHP (1-1, 3.29 ERA, 15 K, 16.2 IP)
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Charlie Shirek has at least temporarily lost his rotation spot after the implosion at Rice. To be fair, the disaster in the bottom of the fourth inning wasn't his fault. Shirek hasn't pitched well so far this season, though, giving up 4 walks to 3 strikeouts, and allowing 15 hits in 8.0 innings.
With Tony Watson, Mike Harmelink and Andrew Brown all off of suspension for the first time this season, this might look more like the team we've been expecting. Knock on wood, but none of the teams Nebraska will face this weekend are up to par with the competition that the Huskers faced at the Rice Invite.
I'll be back with a full preview for Iowa before the game tomorrow, and previews for Notre Dame and Stetson on Saturday. Until then, enjoy your midwestern blizzard. I know I am.