Three-game series at Long Beach State and at five-time national champion Arizona State and 19 home games at Emory G. Bauer Field highlight the 2013 schedule for the Valparaiso baseball team, as released this afternoon by head coach Tracy Woodson.
"With the success we had last year, we were really looking forward to putting together a nice schedule this year, and we feel we did that by playing three 3-game weekend series against major conference opponents," said Woodson. "We're especially excited about going to Tempe to play Arizona State - their program is a pinnacle of college baseball in terms of getting to the College World Series, and we're looking forward to that challenge."
The season kicks off February 15-17 with a three-game series at Belmont before the Crusaders fly out to California for a three-game set against the Dirtbags of Long Beach State, which have advanced to the College World Series on four occasions, on February 22-24. Valpo takes its annual spring break trip to Florida in March, playing a three-game series at South Florida March 8-10 and taking on opponents to be determined in Port Charlotte (March 2-6) and Winter Haven (March 12-16).
The rest of the non-league slate begins at home at Emory G. Bauer Field with a game against Roosevelt on March 20. The Crusaders fly to Tempe for a three-game set at Arizona State, which has won five national championships and made 21 appearances in the College World Series, on April 19-21. Other non-league opponents include Northwestern, Holy Cross [Ind.], Goshen, Chicago State, Western Michigan and Toledo at home at Emory G. Bauer Field, while Valpo will travel to take on Notre Dame, Ball State, Western Michigan and Chicago State.
The 24-game Horizon League schedule begins at Emory G. Bauer Field for the Crusaders with a three-game series against Wright State March 22-24. Valpo will play each of the other four Horizon League schools in six games, split into a three-game series both home and away. The regular season concludes at home against Youngstown State May 16-18, with the Horizon League Championship slated to take place in Niles, Ohio from May 22-26. The league tournament champion earns an automatic bid to the 2013 NCAA Baseball Tournament, a bid the Crusaders are looking to defend this year.