Nicholls Baseball to open NCAA Regional play today against Alabama

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The Nicholls State University baseball team will open up play in the NCAA Regional as it takes on top-seed Alabama at 6 p.m. Friday, June 2 at Sewell-Thomas Stadium.

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Nicholls — Jacob Mayers — RHP – Fr. – 9-1 WL – 1.93 ERA
Alabama — Luke Holman — RHP – So. – 7-3 WL – 3.50 ERA

– The Colonels hold a 2-7 all-time record against Alabama, with the last meeting being a 13-1 loss in 2016. The two victories were in 2001 (W, 5-3) and in 1981 (W, 8-6).
– Nicholls posted a 1-2 record against the SEC, splitting the series against No. 1 LSU while falling to Mississippi State at MGM Park in Biloxi.
– The Colonels are 2-2 against the 2023 Tournament Field. Nicholls split its two-game season series at LSU and split a two-game series at home vs. Penn.

– The Colonels are making their fourth regional appearance all-time as a Division I member and first since 1998.
– Nicholls reached the NCAA Regionals in 1989 as an independent, then represented the Southland in ’92 in its first season in the conference as an at-large before winning the SLC Tournament in 1998.
– All three times the Colonels were sent to an SEC host, playing at Mississippi State in ’89 and ’92 before heading to LSU in ’98.
– Nicholls is 0-6 all-time in the regionals and 0-3 against SEC schools (0-2 vs. MSU, 0-1 vs. LSU).
– Although winless, two of the losses were in extra innings. Nicholls fell to Mississippi State in 11 innings in a 1-0 game in ’92 and dropped a 6-5 decision to Harvard in ’98.

– Alabama enters the regional with an impressive 40-19 overall record and rank No. 11 in the RPI.
– The Crimson Tide locked up a national seed after totaling 17 victories against opponents in the Top 50 RPI.
– Probable starting pitcher Luke Holman went 7-3 with a 3.50 ERA for the Tide this season. He totaled 74 strikeouts in 69.1 total innings. For the season, Holman has a .176 opponent batting average which is the second lowest in the SEC.

– Nicholls claimed its first Southland Regular Season Title with 15-9 league record, finishing a game ahead of UIW. It was the closest race in SLC history as the first-place and seventh-place team were separated by just 3.0 games.
– The Colonels went on to win all four games in the Southland Conference Tournament to claim the second tourney title with the other being in 1998. Nicholls outlasted No. 6 McNeese in 14 innings, 3-2, then defeated No. 3 Lamar, 4-0, before taking down No. 4 New Orleans in the final two games, 5-3 and 6-3.
– With both titles, the Colonels are the first Southland team to claim both the regular season and tournament titles since 2016.

Xane Washington posted a stellar final campaign for the Colonels in his sixth year. He started as a freshman in 2018 before missing the next season with an injury. Including the shortened 2020 season, he has started in all five of his campaigns for the Red and Gray.
– Xane was named SLC Hitter of the Week two times this season, earning it back-to-back during his 19-game hitting streak. He hit .434 during that stretch with six doubles, three triples, three homers and 26 RBIs. He was also walked 14 times and had a .530 on-base percentage. Washington totaled 11 multi-games which included two 4-hit outings. Included in his hitting streaks were both matchups at LSU.
– In addition to repeating as All-SLC, Xane repeated as All-Defensive. He had just one error and eight outfield assists.
– Xane wrapped up his SLC career by being named Southland Tournament MVP. He hit .429 in the four games with three runs scored and two RBIs and posted a .550 on-base percentage.

Jacob Mayers was the ace for the Colonel pitching staff this season and was named SLC Freshman of the Year and All-Southland First Team.
– Mayers is 9-1 and ranked second in the Southland in ERA (1.93), and first in strikeouts (97) and opponent batting average (.176).
– Mayers struck out a career-high 11 batters in the victory at Louisiana Tech and in his lone loss, gave up just a single run at ULM. He allowed two or fewer hits in seven starts and struck out at least four batters in every appearance. In conference, Mayers was 5-0 and led the SLC in ERA, strikeouts, and was second only to teammate Nico Saltaformaggio in opponent batting average.
– Mayers was named SLC Pitcher of the Week after his win at La. Tech.
– He also earned SLC All-Tournament after leading the Colonels in their 4-0 win over Lamar, throwing a season-long 7.1 innings with five strikeouts and only two walks.
– Mayers was named College Baseball Foundation Pitcher of the Year Semifinalist, being one of just 25 players to make the list.

– Nicholls went undefeated in postseason played, matching their 1998 title run of going 4-0 to claim the championship.
– The 14-inning win over McNeese was the longest game in SLC Postseason history.
– The Colonel pitching staff posted a 1.76 ERA with 31 strikeouts and only 4 walks. The bullpen was lights out as Nico Saltaformaggio, Chase Gearing, Gavin Galy and Cade Evans combined for 17.1 innings with 17 strikeouts and one walk. The lone run allowed by the pen was a solo home run in the ninth inning of the championship game.
– The Colonel offense was as well-balanced as an offense could be in terms of run production. All nine starters had an RBI which included eight batters with a team-high two.
– The 4-0 shutout over Lamar was the first time the Colonels did not allow a run in a tournament game since 2011. The stretch expanded across 12 games with the last shutout being a 6-0 win over former member Texas State. It was also just the second shutout in the Colonels’ SLC postseason history.
–  Gavin Galy notched his first career save in the 5-3 semifinal win over New Orleans. He threw 2.2 innings and had five strikeouts and no hits allowed. He also threw a hitless 1.1 innings in the extra-inning win over McNeese.
Xane Washington was voted MVP after hitting .429 (6-for-14). He also added his eighth outfield assist of the season against Lamar as he threw a runner out at home trying to score on a sac fly.
– Joining Xane as All-Tournament selections were freshman catcher Kaden Amundson, junior first baseman Edgar Alvarez, and freshman pitcher Jacob Mayers.

– Nicholls ended the season with a 19-8 record at home — it’s best season at Ray E. Didier Field since 2015.
– The Colonels won three of its four Southland series in Thibodaux which included sweeps of rival Southeastern and Houston Christian.
– Nicholls also had a series win at home against Memphis and split their two-game series against NCAA participant Penn.