Saturday, February 17, 2018
 
by Clip Syndicate
It wasn’t that long ago that the Southern Miss baseball program was going through a bit of a slump, having missed out on the NCAA tournament from 2012 to 2015. But over the last two years, the Golden Eagles have risen back to the top of Conference USA as they soar into 2018 riding a championship wave of momentum. After going four years without a regional appearance, walk-off home runs and conference titles are once again the tradition of excellence for the Golden Eagles.  Head Coach Scott Berry said, "2012 to 15 where we were just a good program, but at the end of the year we weren't one of the 64 like we wanted to be, but these past two years have created the momentum that certainly we want going into 2018." It all started in the 2016 C-USA tournament title game versus Rice with the walk-off double relay, straight out of a Hollywood movie script and the regional dog pile that ensued. Magic at the Pete lived on in 2017 with a regular season league championship, followed by the first Hattiesburg regional since 2003. Infielder Matthew Guidry said, "Oh, well this program is on the come up for sure. I mean we've already had great success, I mean this program has had success historically for a long time. And especially these last two years just since I've been here, and my eyes have been opened to just how this momentum really is taking charge." Despite setting a school record with 50 wins last season, that momentum faltered in a pair of championship moments, leaving the Black and Gold with unfinished business for the year ahead. Outfielder Mason Irby said, "Yeah, we feel like this program is surging right now, but once we got to postseason play, the conference tournament and the regional didn't really go the way we wanted it to. And so we're looking to this year to when we get to that postseason to be able to have that extra little surge there at the end to hopefully win some more championships this year." That road back to the top starts in the same place against the same team that ended the road in heartbreaking fashion last year against Mississippi State. C-USA Tournament MVP Daniel Keating said, "It's instilled a fire in us for sure. I think saying that we're all excited would be a massive understatement, because as soon as we found out we were going to open up with them this year at our park it was just automatic excitement. The atmosphere surrounding the field is going to be hectic, it's going to be like the regional was and it's just going to be a great opportunity to get some redemption." That three game series between USM and MSU starts February 16th with a 4 p.m. first pitch at Pete Taylor Park.   [READ MORE]
 
 
 
 
 
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