JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – Carson-Newman baseball coach Tom Griffin officially released the 2019 schedule Saturday afternoon as the Eagles will play 31 of 52 games at home including 13 over the first month of the season.
The 52-game docket will the most regular season games played by C-N since 2008 when the club took the field 53 times going to the NCAA Tournament compiling a 43-18 overall record. In 2019, the Eagles will travel 2,838 miles.
"A lot of it has to do with teams you have played in the past because you develop a relationship," Griffin said. "You find good people to play. Most of our non-conference games are guys we have great relationships with and good programs that you know are going to do it the right way. We did add Young Harris that we hadn't played in the last couple years."
The first month of the season packs in 20 games into a 27-day period with 13 of the affairs being played at the Silver Diamond Baseball Complex. Opening day is pinned for Feb. 1 at Limestone in the first off three days and four games at Founders FCU Stadium. It is the fourth time in five years that Griffin's group will begin the season against the Saints.
"The first weekend we go to Limestone," Griffin said. "It gives us an away trip. It's always a competitive game with Chris Wiley and his group. Then we are fortunate to have the next three weekends at home. That's good to get into the flow of things."
Mossy Creek sees its first baseball activities of the season on Feb. 6 when King swings by for a 2:30 first pitch on a Wednesday, Feb. 6 to start one of three five-game home stands.
The Eagles host a four-game series with Alderson Broaddus over the weekend of Feb. 8 with a doubleheader on Saturday. It marks the second time the two clubs meet as C-N outscored the Battlers 25-0 over two games on Feb. 19, 2005.
Single game midweek road trips to Shorter, Lee and 2018 Southeast Region No. 3 seed Belmont Abbey are the remaining road affairs in the month while the team welcomes back Northwood for a fourth-straight season. The last series of February comes against Davis & Elkins with doubleheaders on Feb. 23-24 as the clubs have twice before in 2005 and 2012.
South Atlantic Conference action ignites to open the month of March with a trip to Mars Hill. The Eagles play a 24-game league slate and will not play Lenoir-Rhyne or Wingate during the regular season.
"It's always extremely competitive," Griffin said. "The league has gotten better and better every year from top to bottom. There are no easy games no matter where you go. Queens just adds to it with a tremendous coaching staff in a great area. These guys have been at it for over a year now. They have things ready to go. No matter who we are playing our thing is about the process, try to take it one day at a time."
March is the most road heavy month on the calendar with 11 trips away from the nest. After Belmont Abbey closes February and a trip to face the Lions, the team wraps up its longest road trip of the year with a visit to Young Harris on March 5. That affair will be the second all-time contest between the two schools as they met on Feb. 27, 2013. The Mountains come to Jefferson City for the first time on March 27.
Carson-Newman gets visits from its closest schools in Lincoln Memorial and Tusculum while the Eagles visit Catawba, King and Anderson.
April is friendly travel month for Griffin's unit as the squad plays nine of 12 games at home starting with a five-game homestand against Shorter, Newberry and Limestone.
The lone road trip of the season is to visit 1993 American League Cy Young winner Jack McDowell's Queens club as the Royals enter their first year in the league and first as a varsity team.
The year wraps up with a midweek affair against Trevecca Nazerene and visit from Coker. The conference championships will be held at Smokies Stadium for fourth-straight campaign from April 25-29.
"We feel we have some exceptional depth," Griffin said. "We have depth offensively and we have depth in our pitching staff. Now it's getting guys their reps and getting into a flow so everyone understands their role. The earlier we can understand our role, the better we are going to be. We have a great group of upper class leadership. Between our chemistry, leadership and depth, we feel very confident going into the season."
Fans can enjoy baseball all season long on the Eagle Sports Network with coverage beginning 10 minutes prior to the first pitch of every contest on cneagles.com/live. Road games will feature an audio stream while home games will have a high definition video stream accompanying the radio call.
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