The opener of the best-of-three series is slated for 6 p.m. on Saturday, May 13, at Leroy Dreyer Field, and will continue with game two at 6 p.m. on Sunday, May 14. If necessary, a decisive game three will be played at 3 p.m. on Monday, May 15.
Tickets for the super regional are available at the Leroy Dreyer Field gate. Adult passes are $10, senior citizen passes (60 and older) are $5, and college students with a student ID as well as children under the age of 12 are free.
The Buccaneers (42-13) will represent the Region XIV South Zone after winning the South Regional on May 7. Paris (41-18) is the North Zone representative after winning the North Regional, also May 7. The two teams will now play with a trip to the NJCAA Division I Baseball World Series on the line.
“It’s definitely a big series,” said first-year Blinn head coach Dusty Hart. “You can’t approach it like that; you just have to go do what you always do: Relax, play, and go have fun. You can’t make it something more than what it is.”
Hart is no stranger to big moments, having won a national title as head coach of Grayson College in 2008.
“You just have to keep things in perspective,” Hart added. “You can’t ignore what’s going on around you, but you can’t get too caught up in it either. You have to minimize distractions and understand that the added attention doesn’t mean anything. You still have to go out and play the game.”
(Pictured: Blinn head baseball coach Dusty Hart speaks to his team before practice on May 11)
The Buccaneers have totaled their most wins since a 40-win campaign in 2009 and captured their first conference championship since 2001. Blinn also was a model of consistency, losing consecutive games just once this spring.
“We’ve played some pretty good baseball all year,” said freshman infielder/outfielder Brandon Bishop. “We’re just trying to heat up a little more and prove to everybody that this is exactly where we belong. We want to show people that we’re not satisfied with just getting here; we want to keep winning.”
Blinn faced Paris just once this season – a 10-2 victory in the Brazos Valley Tournament on Feb. 9.
“You can’t take them for granted; they won their regional and won some big ballgames,” sophomore pitcher Sam Crain said. “At the same time, though, we’re here too, so we’re not going to let whoever is in the other dugout affect our style of play. We’re going to get after it and be ready.”
Hart said he is excited to have the super regional in Brenham one week after the Buccaneers hosted the Region XIV South Regional. Blinn won the South Zone and therefore earned the right to host the regional tournament. Because Blinn was the top seed out of the South Regional and Paris won the North Regional as its third seed, the Bucs were given home-field advantage for the super regional.
“It’s great to play at home,” Hart stated. “I’ve never seen an atmosphere like we had last week during the regional tournament; it was awesome. It keeps you in it, and the crowd having your back and being loud can propel you through the ups and downs of the game.”
The winner of the Region XIV Super Regional will advance to Sam Suplizio Field in Grand Junction, Colo., as one of 10 teams in the double-elimination World Series. The World Series begins Saturday, May 27, and ends Friday or Saturday, June 2-3.
Blinn has competed in intercollegiate athletics since 1903 and captured 43 NJCAA national championships since 1987.