After a tough weekend in DeLand, the FAMU baseball team started its season 0-4 losing all four games to Stetson last weekend.
That’s the good news. The bad news: It’s going to get tougher in a hurry.
FAMU will be taking on USF this weekend, with the next 19 games on the schedule against non-conference teams. How will the Rattlers compete with their tough schedule?
“From a coaching standpoint we have to realize we’re coaching from a really tough schedule,” coach Jaime Shouppe said.
“We can’t really look at the scoreboard, we have to look at our attitude and effort. Stetson is a very good team, and we were in every game we played. We have to play the game and play the game the right way.”
Traveling to Tampa this weekend, the Rattlers will face USF in a four game series. USF plays in the American Athletic Conference, which includes national names such as Wichita State and University of Houston. In 2018, USF was ranked in the top 25 and hopes to do the same this year.
“I feel like our attention needs to be more about offense going into this week,” said Rob Robinson, a shortstop who is a red-shirt sophomore. “Since we beat USF twice last year, they’re definitely coming for blood this week. Staying mentally in the game is also really important for our chances to be better this weekend.”
In the series against Stetson the FAMU pitching staff did its job and kept the team in games. But order to win games, you have to score runs.
According to FAMU athletics, Stetson outscored the Rattlers 16-4 over the course of four games. LJ Bryant leads the team in hits with 5 and Jared Webb hit the team’s only home run.
“This was our first weekend we played together and due to COVID we didn’t play a full season last year, so I would say we’re kind of rusty,” said grad student and outfielder Seyjuan Lawrence. “We have to get the bats rolling against these top teams. We played very solid games … if pitchers keep pitching I think we’ll come out with a couple wins.”
After playing USF this weekend the Rattlers will travel to Gainesville to play the No. 2 team in the country, the Florida Gators. The Gators have begun their season 3-2 playing Miami and University of North Florida. The remaining portion of the Rattlers’ schedule can be found on the FAMU athletics page.