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Oxford Regional: Team by team preview

The Florida State baseball team begins play in a four-team regional at Oxford, Miss., on Friday afternoon. FSU opens with Southern Miss on Friday at 3 p.m. (ESPNU), while Ole Miss will face Southeast Missouri State at 8 p.m. (ESPN3) in the second game of the regional.

We take a look at the four teams below. Tickets can be purchased through Ole Miss’ ticket office.

Ole Miss

Record: 41-19, 18-12 SEC

Coach: Mike Bianco (908-530-1 in 21 seasons at Ole Miss plus three years at McNeese State).

Top hitters: SS Jacob Gonzalez (.354 BA, .437 OBP, 10 HR, 12 doubles, 51 RBI, 61 runs), LF Kevin Graham (.339 BA, .419 OBP, 14 home runs, 52 RBI, 54 runs), DH Tim Elko (.331 BA, .448 OBP, 13 HR, 7 doubles, 44 RBI, 33 runs), 3B Justin Bench (.319, 6 HR, 35 RBI, 52 runs), CF T.J. McCants (.314 BA, .386 OBP, 5 HR, 9 doubles, 31 RBI, 46 runs), C Hayden Dunhurst (.283 BA, .397 OBP, 7 HR, 10 doubles, 39 RBI, 38 runs).

Top pitchers: LHP Doug Nikhazy (9-2, 2.18 ERA, 114 strikeouts and 27 walks in 78.1 innings), Taylor Broadway (4-2, 2.85, 13 saves, 55 strikeouts and nine walks in 41 innings).

Notes: Ole Miss right-hander Gunnar Hoglund, who had been projected as a top-10 pick in the 2021 MLB Draft, suffered an elbow injury that required Tommy John surgery on May 18. Hoglund was 4-2 with a 2.87 ERA, giving up just 40 hits and 17 walks in 62.2 innings. … Six Rebels earned SEC year-end honors, highlighted by Tim Elko’s selection as the conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Nikhazy (First Team), Dunhurst (Second Team, All-Defense), Justin Bench (Second Team), Jacob Gonzalez (All-Freshman) and McCants (All-Freshman) rounded out the list of SEC awards. Ole Miss is seventh nationally with 437 runs scored, which leads the SEC going into regionals. Six players have an on-base percentage of .400 or better, led by Elko’s .448 … Bianco is a native of Seminole, Fla., and played at LSU.

Southern Miss

Record: 37-19, 22-9 C-USA

Coach: Scott Berry (432-234-1 in 12 seasons at Southern Miss).

Top hitters: DH Charlie Fischer (.338 BA, .505 OBP, 7 HR, 11 doubles, 36 RBI), LF Gabe Montenegro (.330 BA, .426 OBP, 4 HR, 21 doubles, 42 runs), CF Reed Trimble (.319 BA, .394 OBP, 12 doubles, 14 HR, 51 runs, 58 RBI), 3B Danny Lynch (.306 BA, 9 doubles, 10 HR, 32 RBI, 37 runs), 

Top pitchers: RHP Walker Powell (9-2, 1.08 ERA, 79 strikeouts and 17 walks in 81.2 innings), LHP Ryan Och (7-0, 1.47 ERA, two saves, 48 strikeouts and 10 walks in 30.2 innings), RHP Hunter Stanley (6-3, 2.42 ERA, 119 strikeouts and 16 walks in 93 innings), RHP Ben Ethridge (6-1, 2.65 ERA, 81 strikeouts and 11 walks in 71.1 innings).

Notes: Stanley was named to the all-CUSA team. … The Golden Eagles have 19 straight seasons with 30 or more wins. (FSU has now done that 56 straight years.) In the regular season, Southern Miss led the C-USA in ERA (3.53) and fewest walks (105). The Golden Eagles are 20-0 this season when they allow two or fewer runs and 30-8 when they give up five or fewer runs.

Florida State

Record: 30-22, 20-16 ACC

Coach: Mike Martin Jr. (42-27 in two seasons at FSU).

Top hitters: C Matheu Nelson (.332 BA, .438 OBP, 16 doubles, 22 HR, 64 RBI, 64 RBI, 48 runs), 3B Logan Lacey (.296 BA, .370 OBP, 7 HR, 12 doubles, 34 RBI, 35 runs), 1B Tyler Martin (.289 BA, .459 OBP, 2 HR, 6 doubles, 51 runs), LF Elijah Cabell (.268, 14 HR, 39 RBI, 24 runs), Robby Martin (.261 BA, .357 OBP, 7 doubles, 11 HR, 49 RBI, 41 runs).

Top pitchers: LHP Parker Messick (7-2, 3.32 ERA, 121 strikeouts and 23 walks in 84 innings), RHP Conor Grady (5-2, 3.90 ERA, 93 strikeouts and 18 walks in 67 innings), LHP Bryce Hubbart (6-5, 3.97 ERA, 92 strikeouts and 27 walks in 65.2 innings).

Notes: The ACC’s player of the year, Nelson is tied for the national lead in home runs with Wes Clarke of South Carolina and is tied for fifth with 64 RBI. … Messick has 12 starts where he has allowed two or fewer earned runs, including 11 vs. ACC teams. He was named the ACC’s pitcher and freshman of the year … Martin Jr. said Messick or Hubbart would start on Friday … Lacey is hitting .338(21 for 62) in May. … FSU leads the ACC with 256 walks but the .245 batting average is the lowest in the league. The Seminoles’ .360 on-base percentage is ninth in the ACC going into regional play.

Southeast Missouri State

Record: 30-20, 17-10 OVC

Coach: Andy Sawyers (118-116 in five seasons at SEMO).

Top hitters: Tyler Wilber (.389 BA, .458 OBP, 11 doubles, 6 HR, 49 RBI), Jevon Mason (.371 BA, .470 OBP, 14 doubles, 35 runs), Andrew Keck (.299 BA, .377 OBP, nine doubles, 35 runs), Wade Stauss (.241, 14 home runs, 36 RBI, 32 runs).

Top pitchers: LHP Dylan Dodd (9-1, 2.78 ERA, 113 strikeouts and 14 walks in 90.2 innings), Bryce Grossius (4-2, 5.71 ERA, 57 strikeouts and 13 walks in 52 innings), Kyle Miller (4-2, 3.26 ERA, 50 strikeouts and 15 walks in 49.2 innings).

Notes: Dodd leads the league in ERA, wins, strikeouts and innings. He was named Ohio Valley Conference pitcher of the year … Sawyers was named OVC coach of the year, guiding a Redhawks team that was picked fifth in the preseason poll. … SE Missouri State won the Ohio Valley Conference regular season and tournament champions. This is the Redhawks’ first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2016 and prior to that they made trips in 1998 and 2002. … The Redhawks have gone 19-7 down the stretch. … Wilber was named to the OVC second team.