Teams: UC Davis vs. Santa Clara
Records: Aggies, 21-26; Broncos, 21-26
Where: Dobbins Stadium
When: Today at 2:30 p.m.
Who to watch: First baseman Eric Johnson knows how to handle Santa Clara.
When these two teams faced each other in March, the sophomore from Los Altos, Calif. went 3-for-3 from the dish with one run and one RBI.
In fact, Johnson has been one of UC Davis’ most productive hitters all season as his .337 batting average ranks third and his .412 on base percentage places second on the squad.
Did you know? Though this is the final UC Davis home game of the 2010 season, the Aggies have a lot of work to do.
After playing Santa Clara today, UC Davis has to travel to play UC Santa Barbara, Stanford and UC Riverside to end the regular season.
Preview: A lot has happened this year.
After a rough 2009 campaign, the Aggies wanted to improve this season through pitching, defense and, above all else, chemistry.
Though it is currently last in the Big West Conference, UC Davis has come a long way since last year as the Aggies easily eclipsed their win total and received some stellar individual performances.
Two Aggies who have stepped up are David Popkins and Scott Lyman.
Both Popkins and Lyman play both ways, meaning they pitch and hit. Though they excel at both, hitting is their strong point.
Lyman’s .341 batting average ranks second while his .530 slugging percentage is first on the team. At the same time, Popkins’ .349 batting average ranks first and his .510 slugging percentage ranks second. The duo also ranks second and third in homeruns, respectively.
The best news is that, since both players are sophomores, the Aggies will have a powerful lineup for the foreseeable future.
One thing is for sure. UC Davis will need both Popkins and Lyman to be at their best if they hope to defeat Santa Clara in the final home game of the season.
– Mark Ling