UC Davis baseball opens its season this weekend as the Aggies take the field for a four-game set against visiting Seattle University at Dobbins Stadium. Beginning Friday at 2 p.m., the series features a Saturday twinbill (11 a.m.) and a 1 p.m. Sunday game.
The Aggies expect to bounce back from a 19-37 season (5-22 in the Big West Conference) in 2013, as they return 24 letter-winners, six position starters and their entire starting rotation.
UCD coach Matt Vaughn also welcomes 10 new faces for the 2014 campaign.
The team’s top five hitters return from a season ago, led by All-Big West second-team honorees Tino Lipson (.339) and Steven Patterson (.324) along with honorable mention selection Nick Lynch (.359).
UCD field hockey
The Aggie field hockey program will have a new $3.2 million facility to call its own beginning this summer, thanks to the collaborative efforts of donors, parents, the Athletics Department and the campus.
Construction on the facility — which will be a USA Field Hockey certified field — is scheduled to begin in April with turf installation slated to be completed in time for the team’s start of practices in August for the 2014 season. It’ll be located southeast of Aggie Stadium across La Rue Road and just south of the Dairy and Teaching Facility.
The primary feature of the facility will be the synthetic turf field, which will provide a smooth, fast playing surface compared to the bladed artificial grass in Aggie Stadium that is more suited for football and lacrosse and leads to a much slower-paced game. Until now, the lack of a traditional field hockey surface has prevented many East Coast teams — including some of the top programs — from venturing to UCD during their West Coast trips.
UCD men’s water polo
Two Aggies — senior attacker Bernie Rogers and junior utility Chris Richardson — were honored on Thursday as honorable mention selections on the Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches All-America squad.
Rogers’ award capped a season in which he was chosen as the Western Water Polo Association Player of the Year. He tallied 47 goals with a team-high 32 assists for 79 total points on offense, while leading all UCD field players with 28 steals.
Richardson led the Aggies in goals for a second straight year, netting 49 on 128 shots. He also ranked second on the team with 20 assists while drawing 51 exclusions and five five-meter penalties. Richardson has earned year-end accolades from the conference in each of his three seasons, but this is his first national honor.
Davis Baseball Academy
The Davis Baseball Academy will hold tryouts for players ages 10 to 12 on Saturday, Feb. 22, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the lighted softball field in Community Park.
The 10-year-olds will work out from 10 to 11:30 a.m., followed by 11-year-olds from 11:45 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. and 12-year-olds from 1:30 to 3 p.m. The cost is $10.
“With these younger kids, we will start the season later in the year so they have a chance to play Little League,” says Academy director Kevin Keefer.
Pro players Cody Keefer, Mike Turay and Ray Hernandez are expected to be on hand for the tryouts.
In addition, the Davis Baseball Academy’s batting cage facility at 5100 Chiles Road, is now open. Interested teams or individuals can contact Keefer at 916-717-1914 to reserve cage time.
Visit www.davisbaseballacademy.com for more information.
Hot Shots hoops
The Davis Hot Shots, a local youth basketball club, will hold tryouts for boys ninth-grade, JV and varsity squads on Wednesday and Thursday.
The workouts are set for 6 to 8 p.m. both nights at Harper Junior High, 4000 E. Covell Blvd.
For more information and the necessary forms, visit www.davishotshots.com.