Charlotte baseball concludes the regular season with a three-game home series against St. Bonaventure, beginning Thursday night at Robert and Mariam Hayes Stadium at 6 p.m.
Before Friday night's contest, the 49ers will honor their eight outgoing seniors in a pregame ceremony on the field. The four-year class has captured a pair of conference championships and an NCAA Regional appearance, while the redshirt class added a third league crown and second NCAA Tournament appearance. This group has a four-year record of 87-37 at home, a .702 winning percentage.
A pair of senior starters will be making their last career appearances for the Niners. Thursday night, redshirt senior Andrew Smith (Matthews, N.C. / Butler HS) will start for the final time of his career. The 2011 All-American and A-10 Pitcher of the Year will finish up with 49 career starts, fourth-most in program history and seventh all-time at Charlotte in innings pitched, crossing the 300-inning threshold last weekend.
Friday night, redshirt senior Joe Yermal (Bel Air, Md. / McDonogh HS) will start for a program record 54th time. The only freshman to start the first game of an NCAA Regional for the 49ers, Yermal will also finish sixth in program history in innings pitched, and will be the second-winningest pitcher ever to take the mound at Charlotte.
Sophomore Tyler Barnette (Hickory, N.C. / Hickory HS) will finish his second college campaign with the start on Saturday.
The team and conference's leading hitter, redshirt senior Shane Brown (Davidson, N.C. / North Mecklenburg HS) will also finish up his career in the three-game series. He will finish in the top ten in three categories with the Niners (batting average, on-base percentage and stolen base percentage), and needs just one stolen base to get into the top ten in that category for a career. Expanding the reach to the top 25, he adds triples, walks and runs scored to his playing resume.
The 49ers have an 8-4 mark all-time in the series with the Bonnies, including a 5-1 record in the Queen City. The two squads have not met since the middle of the 2010 season. The Niners have won the last five meetings in Charlotte and eight of the last nine contests overall.