Posted: May 6, 2013 6:44 PM
KANSAS CITY - Central Methodist has earned the No. 4-seed in the Hattiesburg Bracket and will face No. 5 South Carolina Beaufort on Thursday, May 9, as the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) announced Monday the seeds and site selections for the 2013 NAIA Baseball National Championship Opening Round.
The Hattiesburg Bracket is one of nine locations that feature a five-team, double-elimination tournament May 9-13.
The game between the Eagles and Sand Sharks starts at 12 p.m. CT. All contests in the Hattiesburg Bracket take place at Milton Wheeler Field.
Central Methodist and South Carolina Beaufort are paired with No. 1 Northwood (Texas), No. 2 Oklahoma Baptist and No. 3 William Carey (Miss.), the host of the Hattiesburg Bracket.
The winner of the Eagles/Sand Sharks advances to play top-seed Northwood on Thursday at 7 p.m. The loser of the contest falls into an elimination game and faces the loser of Oklahoma Baptist/William Carey on Friday at 12 p.m.
Opening Round champions will join host Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) at the 57th annual Avista-NAIA Baseball World Series at Harris Field in Lewiston, Idaho, May 24-31.
Central Methodist is one of 10 programs making their debut in the Opening Round. Newcomers include the Eagles, Ave Maria (Fla.), Benedictine-Springfield (Ill.), Concordia (Ore.), Lyon (Ark.), Martin Methodist (Tenn.), Midland (Neb.), San Diego Christian (Calif.), Science & Arts (Okla.) and Trinity Christian (Ill.).
Central Methodist is one of 29 teams that earned automatic berths to the Opening Round field by placing first or second at their respective conference/independent/unaffiliated group tournaments or by winning a regular-season championship. The Eagles won the Heart of America Athletic Conference regular-season and tournament championships. An additional 16 at-large selections - determined by the final NAIA Baseball Coaches' Top 25 Poll released May 5 - round out the field.
Central Methodist enters the 2013 postseason hunt for the National Championship led by HAAC Pitcher of the Year Drew Greiwe and Player of the Year Jesse Zellner.