The Youngstown State baseball team will play 10 games against teams that played in the NCAA Tournament last year and feature a select group of home games that will start at 5:30 p.m. in 2014, Penguins head coach Steve Gillispie announced.
The Penguins will open the season against tournament participant Virginia Tech on Valentine's Day, and YSU will play a contest against College World Series team North Carolina State on March 2 in its challenging non-conference slate. Youngstown State will open Horizon League play at conference newcomer Oakland on March 14, and the Penguins' home opener at Eastwood Field will be March 21 against Milwaukee. YSU's first 21 games will be on the road.
YSU will play two games against Virginia Tech and Charlotte in Charlotte, N.C. the opening weekend of the season, and it will play five games in six days in Alabama against UAB and Alabama State the following week. The Penguins will then play one game each against Appalachian State, Notre Dame and North Carolina State from Feb. 28-March 2 in Cary, N.C. YSU will have a three-game series at Cincinnati starting on March 7, and the Penguins will play a two-game series at Eastern Kentucky starting on March 11 as their final tune-up for Horizon League play.
Youngstown State's first conference series will be at Oakland, which played in the Summit League last season, on March 14-16. The Penguins will have one more road contest – at Pittsburgh on March 18 – before their home opener against Milwaukee on March 21. That game against UWM will start a stretch for the Penguins in which they play six out of seven contests at Eastwood Field to end the month. They'll play a three-game series against Milwaukee (March 21-23), a game at Ohio (March 26) and a three-game series versus Wright State (March 28-30) to conclude March.
Youngstown State will start April with a 5:30 p.m. contest against Pittsburgh on April 2, but that will be just one of six home games for the Penguins in the month. The other home games are against Kent State (April 8), Oakland (April 17-19) and Akron (April 29), and YSU will play road series at UIC (April 4-6), at Valparaiso (April 11-13), and Milwaukee (April 25-27). The Penguins will also have non-conference road contests against Pittsburgh (April 15), Akron (April 22), Canisius (April 23) and Kent State (April 30) during the month.
Youngstown State will play a three-game set at Wright State to start May and end a stretch where it plays 16 of 21 on the road. The Penguins will then conclude the regular season with back-to-back home Horizon League series against UIC (May 6-11) and Valparaiso (May 15-17). The Horizon League Tournament is set for May 21-24 at Kapco Park in in Mequon, Wis.