Jacob Blatney

Blatney

UT Tyler baseball alumni will present the Issac Tijerina Award as the Patriots host the annual Clements Fluids Alumni Weekend at Irwin Field.

The Patriots host Arkansas-Fort Smith in the Lone Star Conference series with a single game on Friday and a doubleheader on Saturday.

First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. both days as the Patriots will look to put together their fourth straight home Lone Star Conference series win.

The program will welcome back UT Tyler Baseball Alumni in a presentation between games on Saturday afternoon and will also recognize a member of the current team with the Isaac Tijerina Award prior to first pitch of game number one.

Clements Fluids Inc. will also be presenting their Excellence in Leadership Award between games on Saturday.

UT Tyler is ranked No. 25 in the nation with fellow LSC teams West Texas A&M (No. 5) and Angelo State (No. 10).

The Patriots are third in the LSC standings at 17-7 (18-8 overall). West Texas A&M (24-3, 21-2) is first, followed by Angelo State (20-3, 15-3). UAFS is 12-12 overall and 11-10 in conference.

ISSAC TIJERINA AWARDIssac Tijerina played two years (2012-13) for the Patriots where he batted .355 and helped his team win two American Southwest Conference East Division titles, an ASC Tournament championship and reach the NCAA Division III regional semifinals. He was named Most Valuable Player of the ASC Tournament and he was named All-ASC as well as All-West Region.

Soon after his graduation from UT Tyler he was diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer. He passed away in May 2016.

The Patriots honor a baseball player each year with The Issac Tijerina Award. The player must show “the grit, determination and positive attitude that Issac has shown on and off the field.”

Also “the player should follow Tijerina’s respect for the game, play the game as hard as possible each day, show toughness, work hard, show competitiveness and selflessness as well as putting the team first.”

THE LONE MAN REMAININGInjuries to preseason projected starters Austin Schneider and Garrett Arredondo have paved the way for Jacob Blatney to stand as the lone projected preseason starter to the UT Tyler rotation. Blatney has seized that opportunity in stride, and has allowed just three earned runs over his last four weekend starts dating back to Mar. 13.

Blatney has conceded just three earned runs in his last 19.0 innings thrown for the Patriots, and has posted a 3-0 overall record in 2021 with a 3.38 ERA.

A NEW FACE IN THE LINEUPKyler Bumstead has worked his way into the starting lineup, and then to the top of the batting order as of late, with some key hitting in key situations for UT Tyler. The junior went 3-for-4 in last Sunday’s 4-3 come-from-behind win for UT Tyler in a series deciding game three against Texas A&M-Kingsville, and crossed home plate after getting on as the lead runner in a deciding bottom of the eighth inning for the Patriots.

Bumstead found his way into the starting lineup back on Mar. 19 in the first game of the weekend series against Cameron, and has posted a batting average of .324 in his ten starts following that game.

TWITTER: @PhilHicksETFS

 
 

TWITTER: @PhilHicksETFS

Sports Editor

I am a native Tylerite and I grew up reading the Tyler Morning Telegraph and The Tyler Courier-Times. My parents took both the morning and afternoon papers. I came to work here 35 years ago at the age of 23, right after college.