FIU baseball

FIU baseball seeks to rebound from sweep by Rice

FIU plans to prove this weekend against Marshall that, even without a backboard, there’s rebounding in baseball.

After being the only Conference USA team to sweep its first conference series, FIU (17-4, 3-3 in conference) got swept last weekend against Rice in a matchup of teams ranked in several polls. Now, the Panthers host Marshall (6-12, 3-3) in a three-game set at FIU Baseball Stadium that gets the train going back in the right direction.

“We didn’t play very well against Rice,” junior Aramis Garcia said. “At this point, we just need to click the reset button. Take [Thursday’s] practice to reset, clear our minds and get ready for this weekend.”

Junior L.K. Thompson said, “We want to flush everything from the past.”

Actually, their games tend to look awfully similar — they score early and often and give their pitchers a surplus of run support.

Aside from the Rice series, FIU’s been held to less than five runs only twice, in the loss to Dartmouth and in Wednesday’s 3-2, 10-inning win against Florida Memorial.

FIU’s .317 team batting average leads C-USA while Marshall’s .211 ranks last. FIU also leads in team ERA (2.02); Marshall is 10th (3.95).

FIU coach Turtle Thomas described conference games thusly: “There’s 30 gold bars. And you’re out in the desert, in the mines. You’ve got a pack horse, and it’s got two saddlebags. How many of those gold bars can you pick up by the end of the season? How many wins can you get in conference play? That’s how important they are.”

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FILE - In this Dec. 27, 2013, file photo, Marshall's quarterback Rakeem Cato throws in the first half of the Military Bowl NCAA college football game against Maryland in Annapolis, Md. This year, Marshall, which joined Conference USA in 2005, is the preseason favorite.

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