DAHLONEGA, GA – The North Georgia baseball team dropped four spots in the latest Collegiate Baseball Newspaper Division II Top 30 Poll released on Monday afternoon, coming in as the No. 11 team in the country.
The fourth regular season poll of the year showcases the Peach Belt Conference as seven of the top 30 teams in the land come from the league, including two of the top three teams. Georgia College makes their debut at No. 1, while UNC Pembroke rises 14 spots to the No. 3 team in the country.
Following North Georgia at No. 11 is USC Aiken at No. 16, Francis Marion at No. 17, Columbus State at No. 19, and Armstrong Atlantic at No. 22. The seven PBC teams in the latest poll is the most by any conference in the country.
North Georgia dropped two of three games over the weekend, taking the series opener 6-5 in 10 innings over UNC Pembroke, before the Braves battled back to win the final two games of the weekend and jump 14 spots in the ranking to No. 3 in the land.
For the Saints, the schedule could not get any tougher as they will play five games against the top two teams in the country in a five-day span, opening up with No. 2 West Florida for a two-game series on Tuesday evening and Wednesday afternoon.
North Georgia will then welcome top-ranked Georgia College to town for a three-game weekend series, playing a single game on Friday evening, before a doubleheader on Saturday will wrap up the Peach Belt Conference series.
The five games in as many days will cap on the of the toughest five-game stretches in recent history as North Georgia will play the No. 1 team in the country for the second time in the last four years after falling to Mount Olive during the 2008 South Atlantic Regional when the Trojans were ranked No. 1 on their way to winning the National Championship.
The Saints are led by junior catcher Troy Snitker who continues to pace the team at the plate, leading the squad in batting average at .447, hits with 17, runs batted in with 12, and total bases with 24.
On the mound, right-hander Blake Hobby continues to dominate as the junior only has a 1-0 record, but sports a 0.64 earned run average in four starts. His 20 strikeouts 28.1 innings of work leads the team, while opponents are hitting just .167 against the Macon, Ga., native.
TUESDAY | #11 NORTH GEORGIA VS. #2 WEST FLORIDA | 7:00 PM
WEDNESDAY | #11 NORTH GEORGIA VS. #2 WEST FLORIDA | 3:00 PM
FRIDAY | #11 NORTH GEORGIA VS. #1 GEORGIA COLLEGE | 6:00 PM
SATURDAY | #11 NORTH GEORGIA VS. #1 GEORGIA COLLEGE | 2:00 PM
SATURDAY | #11 NORTH GEORGIA VS. #1 GEORGIA COLLEGE | 5:00 PM