Two More Weekends and the Season is Over
Six more games will decide which team will be the regular season champion in the Mountain West. In UNLV's case it will be three games as they play an OOC slate of games this weekend. They can't rest easy as they finish with SDSU next weekend and that could very well be the battle for the championship. New Mexico, which is one game behind UNLV, is hosting San Diego State and has already lost the first game. Fresno State is at San Jose State and is close to elimination as they are 5 1/2 games behind with 5 to play. Nevada is close (2 games behind) and should gain some ground while at Air Force. Whoops, they lost the first game which could put a hitch in their giddy up. I wonder where that phrase came from? Still too close to call.
UNLV (28-16) at Clemson (26-19) and James Madison (15-27)
The Rebels are playing in a tournament at Clemson. No big deal, you say? This will be a chance for the Rebels to gain some RPI points. Clemson is rated 26 and UNLV is 27 so there is that aspect to the games. They are also on the road and that means a lot if they can win there. They also are facing one of the best pitchers in the east as Daniel Gossett (5-0 and 1.70) should be on the mound in one of the games. I understand that the Rebels may rest Erick Fedde (8-2 and 1.76) during this weekend to keep him fresh for the games against SDSU which will be much more important. That shouldn't concern Rebels' fans too much as the rest of the pitching staff is solid as we all know.
San Diego State (13-9) at New Mexico (14-8)
New Mexico is a game behind the leaders and had hoped to overtake them this weekend. They won't overtake them but they do have the chance to catch them. That will be a difficult task. They have lost the first game 6-5 and the Aztecs are playing well.
Nevada (13-9) at Air Force (6-16)
The Wolf Pack is a mere two games behind the leaders but the team lost the Friday game 3-2. The Pack can't let this opportunity slip away if championship flags they desire. Air Force has been playing fairly well the last month or so even though they are in the cellar. They will always have the UNLV sweep upon which to hang their hats. Will they do the same to the Wolf Pack?
Fresno State (11-14) at San Jose State (8-17)
The Spartans are out of contention and have not really been thought of as a player in the MWC all season. With that in mind, the boys in blue would like nothing better than to put a lid on the hopes of Fresno State winning the championship. The Bulldogs still have a chance but it's a slim one and there are three other teams in front of them so it's not likely. They have lost to San Jose State in the Friday game 3-2 as Kalei Contrades out dueled Tim Borst. Two more home games for the Spartans and that may be the last time I see them play in San Jose.