RINDGE, N.H. (May 13, 2018) – Following a one-year hiatus, the Franklin Pierce University baseball team returns to the NCAA Championship later this week, as the Ravens have been selected as the fifth seed in the NCAA Championship East Regional, as announced Sunday night by the NCAA. The Ravens earned an at-large bid in the seven-team, double-elimination tournament, which will run Thursday, May 17 through Monday, May 21, at Peter X. Finnerty Field, on the campus of Pace University in Pleasantville, N.Y., though the tournament is being hosted by top-seeded University of New Haven. Franklin Pierce will open pursuit of its eighth regional crown at 7 p.m. on Thursday against fourth-seeded Southern New Hampshire.
The Ravens are a seven-time NCAA Regional champion (2016, 2013, 2010, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2003). For Franklin Pierce, it is the 14th NCAA Championship berth in program history and marks a return to the national tournament after a 12-year streak of appearances was broken a year ago.
Six of the seven teams will play their first game on Thursday, with games slated for 11 a.m., 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. SNHU (35-15) and Franklin Pierce (32-13-1) will serve as the opening day's nightcap on Thursday at 7 p.m., with the winner drawing top seed New Haven (37-10) at 3 p.m. on Friday, after the hosts receive a Thursday bye. The Penmen and Ravens will be preceded on Thursday by third-seeded Le Moyne (33-15-1) against sixth-seeded Merrimack (31-19) in the tournament opener at 11 a.m. and second-seeded St. Thomas Aquinas (36-13) against seventh-seeded Wilmington (Del.) (34-19) at 3 p.m.
A full schedule for the week is below, and New Haven will provide live stats and live video throughout the duration of the tournament. Details and links will be available at the Championship Central web page, which is linked at the top of this story. Ticket prices for each day of the East Regional are as follows:
Children (12 and under): $5
Seniors (55+): $5
After Thursday's openers, three games will be played Friday and Saturday, with one team being eliminated Friday and two on Saturday. Both games on Sunday will be elimination contests as well, which will set the stage for Championship Monday, which will feature either one two games, pending the outcome of the first contest. Game times for Thursday, Friday and Saturday will be 11 a.m., 3 p.m. and 7 p.m., while game times are set for noon and 4 p.m. on Sunday and Monday.
Merrimack, Wilmington and St. Thomas Aquinas all received automatic bids to the tournament as champions of the Northeast-10 Conference, Central Collegiate Athletic Conference and East Coast Conference, respectively. Meanwhile, New Haven, Le Moyne, Southern New Hampshire and Franklin Pierce all earned at-large selections out of the NE10, which put the maximum of five teams in the East Regional. Only three of the seven teams also participated in last year's East Regional, as SNHU, New Haven and St. Thomas Aquinas all return from the 2017 edition of the event, which was held at SNHU. Franklin Pierce returns to the East Regional field after a one-year hiatus, while Wilmington returns after missing each of the last two tournaments. Merrimack breaks a long NCAA drought, as the Warriors return to the field for the first time since 1999, while Le Moyne makes its first appearance in the national tournament since 2012.
The winner of the East Regional will advance to the NCAA Championship National Finals, scheduled for May 26 through June 2 at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, N.C. Seven other regional tournaments will be conducted this week, with each sending its champion to Cary as well.
2018 NCAA Baseball Championship East Regional
Hosted by University of New Haven
Peter X. Finnerty Field (Pleasantville, N.Y.)
Seeds in parentheses
Thursday, May 17
Game 1: (3) Le Moyne vs. (6) Merrimack -- 11 a.m.
Game 2: (2) St. Thomas Aquinas vs. (7) Wilmington (Del.) -- 3 p.m.
Game 3: (4) Southern New Hampshire vs. (5) Franklin Pierce -- 7 p.m.
Friday, May 18
Game 4: Game 1 Loser vs. Game 2 Loser -- 11 a.m. (loser eliminated)
Game 5: Game 3 Winner vs. (1) New Haven -- 3 p.m.
Game 6: Game 1 Winner vs. Game 2 Winner -- 7 p.m.
Saturday, May 19
Game 7: Game 4 Winner vs. Game 5 Loser -- 11 a.m. (loser eliminated)
Game 8: Game 3 Loser vs. Game 6 Loser -- 3 p.m. (loser eliminated)
Game 9: Game 5 Winner vs. Game 6 Winner -- 7 p.m.
Sunday, May 20
Game 10: Game 7 Winner vs. Game 8 Winner -- Noon (loser eliminated)
Game 11: Game 10 Winner vs. Game 9 Loser -- 4 p.m. (loser eliminated)
Monday, May 21
Game 12: Game 9 Winner vs. Game 11 Winner -- Noon
Game 13: Game 12 rematch* -- 4 p.m.
* Game 13 only necessary if Game 11 Winner wins Game 12.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce baseball apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu/store).