Kent State Golden Flashes baseball
|Kent State Golden Flashes|
|University||Kent State University|
|Head Coach||Jeff Duncan (1st year)|
|Home Stadium||Olga Mural Field at Schoonover Stadium
|College World Series Appearances|
|NCAA Tournament Appearances|
|1964, 1992, 1993, 1994, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014|
|Conference Tournament Champions|
|1992, 1993, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014|
|1964, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1996, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2013|
The Kent State Golden Flashes baseball team is a varsity intercollegiate athletic team of Kent State University in Kent, Ohio, USA. The team is a member of the Mid-American Conference East division, which is part of the National Collegiate Athletic Association's Division I. The team was established in 1914 as the "Normal Nine" and is the oldest intercollegiate team at Kent State University. They play their home games at Olga Mural Field at Schoonover Stadium, which opened in 2005 on the site of their previous home, Gene Michael Field. The Flashes have produced a number of players who have gone on to play in the major leagues and have won 10 Mid-American Conference regular-season titles, 11 MAC tournament titles, 8 MAC East division titles, and 13 NCAA tournaments with the most recent being in 2014. The 2012 season marked the team's first appearance in the College World Series.
The team was established in 1914 as part of Kent State Normal School President John Edward McGilvrey's intramural sports program. It began intercollegiate competition that year as the "Normal Nine" coached by school custodian Alexander Whyte, though no records exist of that season. The team's first recorded season was 1915, where the team played only four games, going 1-3. Alf Lovall would coach the team to a 1-2 record in 1916 and Paul Chandler would coach the team to a 3-0 record in 1922. The records for the 1917-1921 and 1923-1925 seasons are incomplete, though it was during the 1923 season that the various Kent State Normal College teams began being referred to as the Silver Foxes. In 1926, the current Golden Flashes name debuted and Merle Wagoner, who also coached the football team from 1925-1932, would become the Flashes first long-term coach from 1926-1933 leading Kent State to a record of 27-34 in his eight seasons. During the 1932 season, Kent State began play in the Ohio Athletic Conference, where they would compete through the 1951 season. The Flashes would be coached by Gus Peterka for the 1934 and 1935 seasons, Donald Starn for the 1936-1938 seasons, and John Starrett for the 1939-1942 seasons leading up to World War II. During the war years, 1943-1945, Kent State did not field any varsity athletic teams, but resumed in 1946. Wesley Stevens would coach the team for 1946 and 1947 before Matt Resnick would take over in 1948. He would serve as Kent State's coach for the longest tenure to date, from 1948 through the 1961 season compiling an overall record of 132-100-1 and 50-50 in the Mid-American Conference.
Kent State joined the Mid-American Conference in 1951 and baseball began play in the conference in early 1952, finishing third with a 5-4 record in MAC play. Under Matt Resnick, the Flashes would reach third place in 1959 with an 8-3 conference record and second place in Resnick's final season in 1961 with a conference record of 9-2. Dick Paskert would take over beginning in 1962 and would guide the Flashes to their first MAC regular-season title in 1964 finishing in a tie with the Ohio Bobcats at 10-1. Kent State would defeat the Bobcats 6-3 in a play-off game for the Flashes' first NCAA tournament berth, where they were eliminated by the Minnesota Golden Gophers. Paskert would coach through the 1971 season with an overall record of 103-116-4 and 45-59-1 in the MAC. During his tenure he coached notable players such as Thurman Munson, Gene Michael, Rich Rollins, and Steve Stone. Art Welch took over the head coaching position from 1972-1981 and was succeeded by Bob Morgan (1982-1983) and Bob Todd (1984-1987) before Danny Hall was hired for the 1988 season.
Danny Hall would coach the Flashes from 1988 through the 1993 season. During his tenure, Kent State would win its first MAC championship since 1964 by capturing the 1992 and 1993 regular-season and tournament titles and advancing to the NCAA Tournament both years. In the 1992 NCAA Tournament regional played in Tallahassee, Florida, the Flashes won their first-ever NCAA Tournament game defeating the Georgia Bulldogs 5-2. Kent State would fall in their next two games versus Western Carolina University and Florida State to finish 1-2. The Flashes returned to the NCAA regionals the following year playing at Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Kent State finished 2-2 that season with wins over eventual national champion Louisiana State and Western Carolina. Hall would leave after the 1993 season to take the head coaching job at Georgia Tech with an overall record of 208-117 and 106-73 in the MAC at Kent State.
Rick Rembielak took over the program beginning in the 1994 season, winning the MAC regular-season in his first season and qualifying for the NCAA tournament. During his 11 seasons at Kent State, the Flashes would also claim an overall MAC title in 1996, East Division titles in 2000 and 2003, and MAC Tournament titles in 2001, 2002, and 2004. Kent State would return to the NCAA Tournament regionals in 2001 at Columbus, Ohio, posting a 2-2 record with wins over host Ohio State and Delaware. The Flashes would play in the 2002 and 2004 regional tournaments, both played at South Bend, Indiana, going 0-2 and 1-2 respectively. Rembielak would step down after the 2004 season to take the head coaching job at Wake Forest University. He had an overall record at Kent State of 373-251-1 and 200-100 in the MAC.
Beginning in the 2005 season, Kent State alumnus Scott Stricklin took over the program after previously serving as pitching coach and recruiting coordinator at Vanderbilt University from 2000-2001 and serving as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator under former KSU coach Danny Hall at Georgia Tech from 2002-2004. Under Stricklin, Kent State has won six MAC East Division titles (2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012), four MAC regular-season titles (2006, 2008, 2011, 2012), and five MAC Tournament titles (2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012). The team has made five trips to the NCAA Tournament under Sticklin, including four consecutive from 2009-2012. The Flashes earned their first tournament win under Sticklin in the 2009 tournament and advanced to their first regional final since 2001 in the 2011 NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament with wins over Texas State and host Texas.
In 2012, the Flashes won their fourth consecutive MAC Tournament title and advanced to the 2012 NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament. The Flashes first won the Gary Regional as the region's third seed with a 3–0 record, which began with a 7–6, 21-inning win over Kentucky in the 2nd longest game in tournament history. The win was followed by a 7–4 victory over host Purdue and a 3–2 win over Kentucky in the regional final. The Flashes advanced to the Super Regional series in Eugene, Oregon, against host Oregon and won the series 2–1 with a series-clinching run in the bottom of the ninth inning of game three. During the series, the team's winning streak reached 21 games before a 3–2 Oregon win in the second game of the series. In the 2012 College World Series, after falling to Arkansas 8–1 in the opener, the Flashes defeated national top seed Florida 5–4. A 4–1 loss to defending national champion and eventual 2012 runner-up South Carolina ended the Flashes' run, giving them a national fifth-place finish. Kent State's appearance in the College World Series marked the first appearance by any Mid-American Conference team since the 1976 Eastern Michigan Eagles and first ever by a MAC team at both the Super Regional round and College World Series since the NCAA tournament expanded to 64 teams. The Flashes were also the first team from the state of Ohio to appear in the College World Series since the 1970 Ohio Bobcats.
The Flashes have also continued to have multiple players drafted into the major leagues. In 1994, seven Kent State players were selected in the Major League Baseball draft and the Flashes have had players selected in every draft since 1990 except 1998, including six in 2009, five in 2011, and six in 2012 Through the 2012 season, Stricklin has a record of 314-165 (.656), which included a program best 47–20 mark in 2012 and a 45-17 record in 2011. He won his 200th game at KSU on April 9, 2010, at Oestrike Stadium in Ypsilanti, Michigan, 16-1 over the Eastern Michigan Eagles. Stricklin's 300th career win came May 14, 2012, with a 10–4 win over the Miami Redhawks in Kent. Following the 2013 season that saw the Flashes win the regular-season MAC title, Stricklin was hired by Georgia as their head coach. Stricklin's record at Kent State was 350–188 (.651).
- Facilities (PDF). Kent State Baseball 2009 Media Guide (Kent State University). 2009. p. 2. Retrieved 28 September 2009.
- Gigenbach, Cara and Walton, Theresa (2008). Kent State University Athletics. Charleston, South Carolina, Chicago, Illinois, Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and San Francisco, California: Arcadia. pp. 9, 11. ISBN 978-0-7385-5176-0.
- "History and Records" (PDF). 2007 Kent State Football Media Guide. Kent State University. 2007. p. 82. Retrieved 29 September 2009.[dead link]Note: Football team began play in the OAC in the Fall of 1931 with the baseball team beginning the following Spring
- Gigenbach & Walton, p. 43
- "History and Records" (PDF). Kent State Baseball 2009 Media Guide. 2009. p. 34. Retrieved 28 September 2009.[dead link]
- "All-Time Baseball Standings" (PDF). 2008 Mid-American Conference Baseball Record Book. Mid-American Conference. 2008. pp. 11–14. Retrieved 28 September 2009.[dead link]
- "MAC Teams In The NCAA Tournament". 2008 Mid-American Conference Baseball Record Book. 2008. pp. 26–27.
- Gigenbach & Walton, p. 76
- Kent State Athletic Communications (2009). "Scott Stricklin". KentStateSports.com. Kent State University. Retrieved 28 September 2009.[dead link]
- Associated Press (June 2, 2012). "Kent State outlasts Kentucky in 21 innings". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved June 27, 2012.
- Alexander, Elton (June 3, 2012). "Kent State baseball team beats Purdue, one win away from regional title". The Plain Dealer. Retrieved June 27, 2012.
- Alexander, Elton (June 4, 2012). "Kent State baseball beats Kentucky, advances to Oregon". The Plain Dealer. Retrieved June 27, 2012.
- Fentress, Aaron (June 11, 2012). "Kent State advances to College World Series with 3-2 win over Oregon Ducks". The Oregonian. Retrieved June 27, 2012.
- Peterson, Anne M. (Associated Press) (June 11, 2012). "Kent State baseball drops Game Two against Oregon at NCAA Super Regional Series". Record-Courier. Retrieved June 27, 2012.
- Carducci, David (June 19, 2012). "Kent State Golden Flashes eliminate No. 1 Florida Gators, advance in College World Series". Record-Courier. Retrieved June 27, 2012.
- Carducci, David (June 22, 2012). "Curtain falls on Kent State baseball's dream season". Record-Courier. Retrieved June 27, 2012.
- Pluto, Terry (June 19, 2012). "Kent State keeps surpassing expectations in College World Series". The Plain Dealer. Retrieved June 27, 2012.
- "Record Book" (PDF). KentStateSports.com. Kent State University. July 20, 2011. Retrieved June 27, 2012.
- Staff Report (May 14, 2012). "Kent State baseball coach Scott Stricklin gets win No. 300". Record-Courier. Retrieved June 27, 2012.
- Moff, Allen (June 2, 2013). "Kent State baseball's Scott Stricklin to coach Georgia". Record-Courier. Retrieved June 3, 2013.