Baxendale in contention for Premier Player

Baxendale in contention for Premier Player

FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas junior pitcher DJ Baxendale is one of 25 college baseball players that are in contention to be named the 2012 Premier Player of College Baseball.

Razorback fans can go online and vote for Baxendale at until May 31st. The players with the five highest vote totals will be announced on May 31st and placed into a new poll for the months of June and July. The winner of the award will be announced in July.

A native of Jacksonville, Ark., Baxendale has started 16 games this season and has a 7-4 record with a 3.02 ERA. In 86.1 innings, Baxendale has struck out 79 batters, while holding the opposition to a .235 batting average. In SEC play, Baxendale made 10 starts and posted a 2-3 record with a 3.39 ERA. The right hander has saved his best starts for the second half of the season. In his last eight starts, Baxendale has a 1.68 ERA and opposing hitters are batting just .194 against him. Baxendale has victories this season over Villanova, Valparaiso, BYU, Texas, Binghamton, Georgia and Tennessee.

Carver on watch list for Brooks Wallace award

FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas senior shortstop Tim Carver is one of 25 players included on the most recent watch list released for the 2012 Brooks Wallace Shortstop of the Year Award.

The award watch list was narrowed in half from 50 players to 25. Carver is one of five shortstops from the Southeastern Conference that remains in contention for the award. The winner of the award will be announced on June 30 in Lubbock, Texas, as part of the College Baseball Hall of Fame’s Night of Champions.

A native of Fayetteville, Ark., Carver is second on the team with a .313 batting average and has added two homers and 27 RBI. He leads the team with 71 hits and has also stolen a team-best 13 bases. Carver will enter the NCAA Tournament on an eight-game hitting streak and he is currently tied for the team lead with 19 multi-hit games. Carver has at least one hit in 44 of the 57 games he has played this season.

Carver has played in 209 games in his collegiate career and has made 194 starts. He is a .268 career hitter and his hit seven homers, while driving in 86 runs. Carver is three stolen bases shy of 50 in his career, as he is 47-for-63 in stolen bases as a Razorback.

ASU falls to Troy in Sun Belt Tournament

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. — A five-run first inning was too much for second-seeded Arkansas State to overcome as the Red Wolves (33-22) fell to the sixth-seeded Troy Trojans 8-3 Friday afternoon in ASU’s second game of the Sun Belt Conference Tournament at Bowling Green Ballpark.

With a win over Troy, Arkansas State would have advanced to Sunday’s championship game against Louisiana-Monroe. Now, the Red Wolves must defeat Florida International in Saturday’s game two, and hope for a Middle Tennessee win over Troy (28-29) in the Saturday opener. Troy is now 2-0 in Pool B, Arkansas State and Middle Tennessee are 1-1 and FIU is 0-2. An ASU victory over FIU, coupled with an MTSU victory over Troy would leave all three teams at 2-1, with Arkansas State winning the tiebreak as the higher seed.

Troy used a three-run double from left fielder Boone Shear to jump-start the five-run first inning.

The Red Wolves chipped away in the third with a pair of runs to cut the Trojan lead to 5-2. Center fielder Michael Faulkner singled, advanced to second on a bunt single from right fielder Collin Massanelli, and came home on when left fielder Logan Uxa reached on an error. Third baseman Claude Johnson singled in the other ASU run, driving in pinch runner Kaleb Brown from third.

An RBI single from Knowles stretched the Troy lead to 7-3 in the seventh and an insurance run in the eighth set the final at 8-3.

Devils oust Rangers, face Kings for Cup

NEWARK, N.J. — Adam Henrique scored just over a minute into overtime and the New Jersey Devils defeated the New York Rangers 3-2 to advance to their first Stanley Cup finals since 2003.

The Devils will face the Los Angeles Kings in the finals that begin Wednesday.

Ryan Carter and Kovalchuk also scored for the Devils, who blew a 2-0 first period lead.

Ruslan Fedotenko and Ryan Callahan tallied for top-seeded New York.