Nebraska plays UC Irvine on Friday, March 15 at 8:30 p.m. (CT)
Photo by Scott Bruhn/Nebraska Communications

Husker Face Ranked Teams in California

By NU Athletic Communications

Nebraska (5-9, 0-0 Big Ten) at No. 25 UC Irvine (13-4, 0-0 Big West)
Friday, March 15 - 8:30 p.m. (CT)
RHP Christian DeLeon (1-1) vs. RHP Andrew Thurman (1-2)
Saturday, March 16 - 3 p.m. (CT)
RHP Ryan Hander (0-2) vs. LHP Matt Whitehouse (2-1)
Sunday, March 17 - 3 p.m. (CT)
RHP Brandon Pierce (1-2) vs. RHP Andrew Morales (5-0)

Nebraska (5-9, 0-0 Big Ten) at No. 8 Cal State Fullerton (13-3, 0-0 Big West)
Tuesday, March 19 - 8 p.m. (CT)
Wednesday, March 20 - 8 p.m. (CT)

Up Next for the Huskers
Following a three-game series in Ruston, La., with the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs, the Nebraska baseball team (5-9, 0-0 Big Ten) continues its season-long 12-game slate away from Hawks Field with eight-game road trip.

The Huskers open play on Friday, March 15 at No. 25 UC Irvine on for a three-game series at Anteater Ballpark.

Following on off-day on Monday, March 18, Nebraska stays in the Los Angeles area to play a two-game midweek series with No. 8 Cal State Fullerton on Tuesday and Wednesday. It will be the Huskers' second trip to Goodwin Field this season after playing a doubleheader with the Titans during the season's opening weekend.

Nebraska then travels east on Thursday, March 21 to Champaign, Ill., where it opens Big Ten Conference play on Friday, March 22 with a three-game series against the Illinois Fighting Illini.

After returning to Lincoln from Illinois, Nebraska plays its 12th-straight game away from Hawks Field with a trip to Manhattan, Kan., on Tuesday, March 26 for one game with the Kansas State Wildcats.

On the Radio this Weekend
Fans across Nebraska and around the world can listen Greg Sharpe and Jeff Culhane call all of the action on the Husker Sports Network - including KLIN 1400 AM and 94.5 FM in Lincoln - and on the Internet at or the Official Husker App. A complete list of HSN affiliates can be found on page 13.

TV Coverage this Weekend
There is no television coverage of any game this weekend.

Web Streams this Weekend
None of the three games at UC Irvine will be streamed, but both games at Cal State Fullerton will be streamed for free at BigWest.TV.

UC Irvine Anteaters
UC Irvine enters the weekend ranked No. 25 in the country in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll with a 13-4 record. The Anteaters won 11 of their first 13 games before losing 2-of-3 at BYU last weekend.

Nebraska and UC Irvine have previously met twice, with each team posting a win. Friday's series-opening meeting will be the first on the Anteaters' home field.

The two teams first met on Feb. 22, 1980 in Las Vegas, with the Huskers winning, 5-3. 28 years later the Anteaters were shipped to Lincoln Regional for the NCAA Tournament, where they beat Nebraska 3-2.

The Anteaters went on to win the regional with a win over Oral Roberts and came within one game of advancing to the College World Series, but lost at LSU.

Cal State Fullerton Titans
Coming off its 26th Big West Conference title and their 21st-straight NCAA Tournament appearance, Cal State Fullerton enters the week ranked No. 8 in the country by Baseball America with a 13-3 record, including a 7-2 record at home.

The Titans won their first 10 games of the season, before dropping their series finale with Oregon, 9-1, on Sunday, March 3.

The Titans took 2-of-3 at Texas A&M last weekend and will be on the road at Oral Roberts this weekend before hosting the Huskers for the second time this season.

The Huskers are 0-4 all-time against the Titans, as Fullerton won at home, 9-7 in 1984, and held on to a 5-4 win over the Huskers at Rosenblatt in the opening round of the 2001 College World Series. The Titans swept a doubleheader earlier this season on Saturday, Feb. 16 with a 10-5 win in game one and a 9-0 shutout in game two.

Silva's California Ties
Nebraska Pitching Coach Ted Silva has multiple ties to opponents the Huskers will be facing in California.

A native or Redondo Beach, Calif., Silva was a pitcher at Cal State Fullerton from 1993-95. A first-team All-American for the Titans in 1995, Silva earned the win against USC in the 1995 national championship game.

Following a professional playing career, Silva returned to Cal State Fullerton as a volunteer assistant during the 2005 and 2006 seasons.

After one year at Fresno State in 2007, Silva coached at UC Irvine for three seasons from 2008-2010. During the 2008 season, Silva and the Anteaters came into Lincoln and beat the Huskers, 3-2, in the NCAA Lincoln Regional.

Improvement on the Mound
With one year under Pitching Coach Ted Silva, the Huskers have started to show improvement on the mound through their first 14 games compared to their first 14 games from a year ago.

Playing a tougher schedule in 2013 with five road games against ranked teams, compared to no road games against ranked team last year, the Huskers have allowed the same amount of runs (66), but the NU has given up 13 fewer extra-base hits, opponent's batting average is down to .278 from .291 and NU has increased its strikeouts per inning.

Keep Your Bags Packed
The Huskers are currently playing 12 straight games away from Hawks Field, with each game a true road game.

It's the longest stretch for the Huskers since the 2007 season, when Nebraska played 13 straight games away from home to start the year, but only six of the games were true road games. The Huskers were scheduled to play their first 10 games away from home and then play Nebraska-Kearney on Tuesday, March 6 at Hawks Field, but the game was cancelled due to weather.

The last time Nebraska played more than 12-straight true road games was during the 1985 season, when the Huskers played 15-straight games on an opponent's home field. The schedule included New Mexico (1), Arizona State (3), San Diego State (5), UNLV (3), Southern Utah (1) and Kansas State (2).

Going for 2,000
The Nebraska baseball team is five wins away from notching the 2,000th win in program history.

Dating back to the team's first season in 1889 when the team went 1-2, the Huskers entered the season ranked 45th all-time in the NCAA record books in wins.

Entering 2013, only 44 programs in NCAA history had won more than 2,000 games, while only two programs had posted 3,000 or more wins. Fordham entered the season ranked first all-time with 4,320 wins and Texas was second with 3,276 wins.

Take it for the Team
Senior infielder Bryan Peters entered the 2013 season ranked fourth on Nebraska's career list 43 HBP and still sits fourth with 44 HBP, but is just two short of tying Kale Kiser (46) for third place.

Peters should easily move to the No. 3 spot in 2013, and possibly have a chance at moving to the No. 2 spot on the all-time list.

Kash Kalkowski recently moved to ninth on the all-time list with 32 career HBP, as he has been hit a team-high six times this season. No other Husker has been hit more than once.

DJ Belfonte (2007-10) sits second on the career list with 59 HBP and Daniel Bruce (2002-05) holds the NU career record with 67 HBP.

Double Dips
Nebraska has played three doubleheaders this season and is 3-3 in the six games.

NU was swept at then No. 22 Cal State Fullerton during the season's opening weekend, but swept Northern Colorado at Hawks Field.

The latest doubleheader came at Louisiana Tech, where the two teams split the day, with the Bulldogs winning game one, 2-1, and the Huskers winning game two, 3-2.

Nebraska played three doubleheaders a year ago, going 3-3. The Huskers swept at Ohio State, were swept at Indiana and split a doubleheader at home with CSU Bakersfield.

Options at Short
Nebraska has played three players at shortstop this season, including senior Bryan Peters as well as freshmen Jake Placzek and Wes Edrington.

Edrington made his season debut on Wednesday at Northern Colorado and has started a total of three games, while Peters has started eight games and Placzek four games.

Knock Out Blow
Producing big innings was a staple of Nebraska's offense a year ago, but through the first seven games of the year, the Huskers had scored more than two runs in an innings just once, when they plated three runs in the sixth inning at USC.

That all changed on Saturday, March 2 when the Huskers plated seven runs in the bottom of the sixth to turn a 0-5 hole into a 7-5 lead. Nebraska went on to win the game, 8-5, its first win of the 2013 season.

The Huskers batted around for the first time all season that inning, sending 12 hitters to the plate.

After scoring 17 runs in their first seven games of the year and going 0-7, the Huskers have scored 30 runs in their past seven games, going 5-2.

Something about the 6th
On the season, Nebraska has failed to outscore its opponents in any inning this year, except the sixth, where it holds a 17-6 advantage.

17 of the Huskers' 47 runs on the year have come in the sixth inning.

Nebraska is also 5-1 on the year when leading after the sixth, but 0-8 when trailing after the sixth.

Hits in Bunches
Senior Chad Christensen has been tough on opposing pitchers this season, as the NU left fielder leads the team with seven multi-hit games.

Christensen has produced three hits three times this season.

Pat Kelly has five multi-hit games, while Austin Darby has four and Kash Kalkowski has three multi-hit games.

DeLeon Delivers
Junior Christian DeLeon has been a welcome addition to the Husker pitching staff in 2013.

Projected to be a long-relief arm and a spot starter, DeLeon was throw into the weekend rotation to start the season and has been arguably the Huskers' top starter.

The 6-3 righty has thrown 8.0 innings in his past two starts and leads the team with 26.2 innings pitched.

DeLeon holds a 1.45 ERA on the year and is tied for the team lead with 14 strikeouts, while issuing five walks.

Vogt of Confidence
Prior to the start of the 2013 season, Head Coach Darin Erstad announced the senior Dylan Vogt will be the team's closer.

After blowing his first two saves of the season, both resulting in walk-off losses, Erstad stuck with Vogt and he has converted his past three save opportunities.

Vogt became arguably the top arm in the Husker pen last season, as he pitched 53.2 innings over 25 appearances, while producing a blistering 1.84 ERA.

While striking out 34 and walking just 14, Vogt gave up just five extra base hits all season, including no home runs.

On Friday, Feb. 8, Vogt was one of 75 players named to the NCBWA Preseason Stopper of the Year Watch List. He was one of four Big Ten pitchers selected, joining Ohio State's Josh Dezse, Illinois' Reid Roper and Northwestern's Kyle Ruchim.

Sophomore Slump, Not so Far
After producing one of the top freshman seasons in recent memory at Nebraska, Pat Kelly, has started his sophomore season on the right foot through 14 games.

Kelly is hitting a .340 (18-for-53) on the year, with three doubles.

Kelly started the year with a nine-game hitting streak, before it was snapped in game one of a doubleheader with Northern Colorado on Wednesday, March 6. His nine-game streak is a season-high by a Husker this year.


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