THUNDERBIRDS PLAY TWO AT KU
Southern Utah is back on the road this week for two games with the Kansas Jayhawks. The two teams will start things off on Tuesday at 2 p.m. (MT) and then meet again on Wednesday at that same time. The Jayhawks split a pair of games with Houston Baptist last week to move to 9-10 on the year while the Thunderbirds dropped two of three to visiting Northern Colorado. SUU will back in Cedar City this weekend to host Chicago State in a pair of games slated for Friday at 3 p.m. and Saturday at noon.
FOLLOW THE THUNDERBIRDS
Southern Utah baseball fans can follow all home and select away games via LiveStats at www.SUUTBIRDS.com. Select home games will also be broadcast on the radio at 91.1 FM and online at www.power91radio.com.
After starting the week in Kansas, the Thunderbirds will return home this weekend for a pair of games with Chicago State. SUU will face the Cougars on Friday at 3 p.m. then again on Saturday at 12 p.m. (MT)
LAST TIME OUT
SUU shortstop Bo Cutbertson posted seven RBI to help the T-Birds snap an eight-game losing skid by taking a 20-11 win over Northern Colorado on Friday. The Bears came out on top in the other two meetings however to claim the three-game series.
ABOUT THE KANSAS JAYHAWKS
Kansas split a pair of games with Houston Baptist over the weekned to see its record go to 9-10 on the year. Right fielder Connor McKay has hit four homeruns to drive in 10 runs this season while junior shortstop Kevin Kuntz leads the team with a .286 batting average. Head coach Ritch Price has lead Kansas to a record of 307-257 over the past nine years. The Thunderbirds dropped a pair of games to the Jayhawks when the two teams met in Lawrence last season.
CUTHBERTSON NAMED SUMMIT LEAGUE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Southern Utah shortstop Bo Cuthbertson earned his second career Player of the Week award Monday after posting impressive numbers to help the Thunderbirds take a 20-11 win over Northern Colorado this past weekend. The reigning Summit League Player of the Year led the team to victory after going 4-for-5 at the plate with seven RBI, three runs scored, two triples and a double. On the week Cuthbertson recorded a .533 batting average with a pair of doubles and two triples. The senior slugger also scored seven runs and drove in eight more for a .933 slugging percentage.
FATHER AND SON TO MATCHUP
Southern Utah University head coach David Eldredge will see a familiar face when the Thunderbirds face the University of Kansas on Tuesday. The Jayhawks second baseman is sophomore Ka’iana Eldredge, son of the SUU skipper.
“OHANA” MEANS FAMILY
Southern Utah made a trip to Hawai’i this season for a four-game series with Hawai’i Pacific. The matchup was a homecoming for several of the Thunderbirds as five SUU players and head coach David Eldredge all hail from the islands. Sea Warrior head coach Garett Yukumoto and his assistant Benny Agbayani were also players at HPU for Eldredge in the early 1990’s.
SUU SHORTSTOP GARNERS NATIONAL ATTENTION HEADING INTO HIS SENIOR SEASON
Senior shortstop Bo Cuthbertson has picked up two more coveted distinctions, being named to the Louisville Slugger and College Sports Madness 2012 Preseason All-American Teams. These awards come in addition to the Southern Utah slugger’s selection to the NCBWA Preseason All-American First-Team last month. Last season the Thunderbird infielder inserted himself into the SUU record books after posting the third highest single season batting average (.432), the third most hits (83), as well as the second highest total in doubles (20) and triples (7) in school history. His batting average was also the fifth best mark in the nation and he was also among the nation’s leaders in triples, slugging percentage (.688) and on base percentage (.496). Cuthbertson also recorded 51 runs, 47 RBI, 27 walks, 15 stolen bases, five homeruns and four sacrifice flies on the year. Cuthbertson’s outstanding performance in his junior season helped him earn recognition as the Summit League Player of the Year as well as a spot on the Louisville Slugger All-America Baseball Team, the College Baseball Lineup 2011 D1 All-Star Team and the American Baseball Coaches Association Midwest All-Region Second Team.
SUU BASEBALL SLOTTED FIFTH IN SUMMIT LEAGUE PRESEASON POLL
Southern Utah University was picked to finish fifth in the 2012 Summit League Preseason Baseball Poll, and was the only team outside the conference favorite to receive a first place vote. Oral Roberts University received six of the possible seven first place votes as they were picked to win a 15th-consecutive league title. Western Illinois placed second in the poll with 27 points followed closely by South Dakota State with 25 points. In fourth was North Dakota State with 21 points, two ahead of Southern Utah. Oakland with 11 points and IPFW with eight points rounded out the poll.
WHAT WE RETURN
The Thunderbirds return their entire starting lineup from last year’s club that was two wins away from earning a spot in the Summit League Tournament. Headlining that group will be a pair of All-Summit League first team selections in senior shortstop Bo Cuthbertson and senior utility player Mitchell Kauweloa. Cuthbertson led the team with 88 hits on his way to becoming the first SUU baseball player to be named the Summit League Player of the Year. Senior outfielder Marcus Romero also returns after hitting at a .352 clip with 14 doubles and 29 RBI while junior lefthander Justin Neubauer and righty Chase Rezac return to headline the Thunderbird pitching staff.
SUU TO DISCONTINUE BASEBALL FOLLOWING 2012 SEASON
Southern Utah University has announced that its intercollegiate baseball program will be discontinued following the 2012 season. The University’s Board of Trustees approved the action in its regular meeting following a recommendation by its athletic sub-committee. The University’s pending move to the Big Sky Conference, which doesn not sponsor baseball, coupled with the need to redirect resources to add men’s tennis, precipitated the decision to eliminate baseball, SUU Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Ken Beazer said. The committee further recommended the athletics department continue in the future to channel its resources into sports with strong conference affiliations in order to put its best foot forward. “This is one of the most difficult decisions we have had to make in my time at Southern Utah University,” Beazer said. “There were many factors and options considered; yet, we believe today’s decision puts the University in a better position to advance its intercollegiate athletics programs.” Beazer indicated that existing athletic scholarships will be honored for players with remaining eligibility for one year following the 2012 season.