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Published 4/1/03
Owens Express Baseball Opens Home Conference Schedule Against Lakeland Community College, April 12-13

Owens Community College menís baseball will open its 2003 home conference schedule with weekend doubleheaders against Lakeland Community College, Saturday-Sunday, April 12-13. The first game of each doubleheader will begin at 1 p.m.

All home games are doubleheaders and played at the Collegeís Baseball/Softball Complex on the Toledo-area Campus. Owens is located on Oregon Road, four miles from Downtown Toledo. Admission to all home games is free.

The Owens menís baseball program is guided by first-year Head Coach Bob Schultz of Toledo. During the previous five seasons he handled the pitching rotation as an Express Assistant Coach under former Head Coach Rich Pivoriunas. Schultzís Assistant Coaches are John LoCascio of Toledo and Scott Tucker of Toledo.

In 2002 the Express completed their season with a 22-25 overall record and look to improve upon a fourth place finish within the Ohio Community College Athletic Conference (OCCAC).

During this past fall baseball campaign, Schultzís squad amassed a 10-5 overall record. The Express currently are tied for second in the OCCAC regular season standings with a 6-2 mark. In recent weeks wins over Rochester Community College 17-10 and Tri-State University JVs 15-0 and 5-3 have Owens once again in position to contend for the OCCAC championship. Their combined fall and spring overall record is 17-10.

"Our coaching staff is very excited about this yearís team," Schultz said. "We have a good nucleus of first-year and returning players who have a lot of potential. I expect the hard work and dedication put forth by our student-athletes in the preseason to pay off in the regular season as we compete for a OCCAC championship."

Schultz added, "The best way we can achieve our goals is by taking each game one at a time."

The Express have eight players returning from last yearís team, including OCCAC First Team All-Conference selection Mike Valerius of Toledo (St. Francis de Sales High School). In 2002, the sophomore infielder led the team with 47 hits and collected 36 RBIs. Valerius also compiled a .393 batting average and was named the teamís Offensive Player of the Year.

Schultzís squad also returns Adam Bateson of Bloomdale (Elmwood High School) and Jason Runion of Woodville (Gibsonburg High School). Bateson, a sophomore centerfielder, recorded 41 hits and had 23 RBIs. He also tied for the team lead with 23 runs and compiled a .356 batting average. His postseason honors included being chosen as the teamís Golden Glove recipient. Runion, a sophomore pitcher, compiled an undefeated 3-0 record with a 3.01 earned run average in 36 innings.

Other returning sophomore players to the Express include Keith Haney of Holland, catcher (Springfield High School); Pete Anderson of Mansfield, pitcher (Ontario High School); Nick Morris of Lima, second base (Lima Senior High School); Clint Bailey of Toledo, pitcher (Start High School), and Dan Vincent of Toledo, third base (Whitmer High School).

First-year players to the Express menís baseball program are Tony Finley of Mansfield, pitcher (Ontario High School); Matt Dedeluk of Monroe, Michigan, catcher (Monroe High School); Matt Guerrero of Oregon, pitcher/infield (Clay High School); Matt Yenrick of Toledo, pitcher/infield (Waite High School); Josh Bowers of Defiance, shortstop (Tinora High School); Todd Wells of Shelby, pitcher (Shelby High School); Scott Zaciewski of Toledo, outfield (Whitmer High School); Nick Caputo of Toledo, pitcher (St. Francis de Sales High School); Zachary Pettee of Holland, catcher (St. Johnís Jesuit High School); Adam Dunn of Toledo, shortstop (Whitmer High School); Kyle Leppelmeier of Edgerton, pitcher (Edgerton High School); Jason Sparks of Whitehouse, outfield (Anthony Wayne High School); Todd Schumaker of Ottawa, outfield/pitcher (Ottawa-Glandorf High School); Roc Roytek of Toledo, pitcher (Start High School), and Brian Chako of Woodville, outfield (Woodmore High School).

Owens Community College is the fastest-growing higher educational institution in Northwest Ohio with 24 consecutive semesters of enrollment increases. On the Toledo-area and Findlay-area campuses, Owens serves more than 38,000 credit and non-credit students making it the number one choice for new college students. Owens is committed to providing small classes, personal attention and unmatched affordability. Owens Community College offers over 130 program areas in Agriculture, Business, Fine and Performing Arts, Health, Public Service, Skilled Trades, Industrial and Engineering Technologies. Owens students also can earn the first two years of a bachelor's degree with a smooth transfer to any area four-year college or university.


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