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A&T, Norfolk State Renew Their Tournament Rivalry

Courtesy: NC A&T Sports Information
          Release: 05/15/2012
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First-team All-MEAC performer Marquis Riley (right) celebrates an Aggies run with second-team All-MEAC first baseman Kelvin Freeman (left). The Aggies play MEAC Baseball Tournament host Norfolk State Saturday morning at 9.
Courtesy: NC A&T Sports Information
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Game: #3 North Carolina A&T (18-34, 12-12 MEAC) vs. #2 Norfolk State Spartans (21-26, 15-9)

When: Wednesday, May 16 at 11 a.m.

Where: Marty L. Miller Field, Norfolk Va.

Series Highlights: The Aggies finished the regular season with a .500 record in conference play and a No. 3 seed in the Southern Division, advancing to the MEAC Championship Tournament once again.  The Aggies will be kicking things off in Game 1 by facing off against the Northern Division No. 2 seed, Norfolk State.  The Aggies will be trying to dethrone the six-time reigning MEAC Champion Bethune-Cookman Wildcats to earn their first ring since 2005.  The tournament is an 8-team double elimination tournament.  If the Aggies win on Wednesday, they will take on the winner of Bethune-Cookman/Coppin State Thursday afternoon at 12:30   

Aggies in the Tournament:  The Aggies have posted a 17-12 record in the MEAC tournament the last seven seasons.  A&T reached the championship game in four of those seven seasons, including winning the crown in 2005.  The last time the Aggies were in the title game was in 2010, when they fell to Bethune-Cookman 7-4.

Norfolk State Scouting Report: The Spartans enter the MEAC Tournament the No. 2 seed from the Northern Division.  The Spartans finished the regular season 21-26 overall with a 15-9 MEAC record.  They return seven pitchers and two All-MEAC position players from last year's tournament runner-up team. The Spartans are led offensively by Cameron Day, who is hitting .375 with six doubles, four triples and 24 RBI.  The Spartans are batting .274 as a team with 231 runs scored on 407 hits.  The NSU pitching staff holds a 4.01 ERA with 237 runs allowed on 440 hits with 158 walks and 347 strikeouts.  Opposing batters are hitting .285 off Spartan pitchers.                   

Aggies vs. Spartans: The Aggies are 27-12 against Norfolk State since 2004, having posted several win streaks against them.  This will be their first meeting this season, following the separation of the MEAC into two divisions.  The Aggies lost their last meeting with the Spartans14-4 in the MEAC tournament on May 18, 2011. Since 2005, the Aggies are 7-3 against the Spartans in the MEAC Tournament.  The Aggies defeated NSU for the 2005 MEAC title.       

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