SBC tourney visits Riddle-Pace

Published 10:40 pm Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Bobby Pierce has been the head coach of the Troy University baseball team since 2003 and in that time the Trojans have never hosted a conference tournament.

That will all change next week when the Trojans host the Sun Belt Conference tournament at Riddle-Pace Field May 20-23.

“We are excited to be hosting this great tournament,” Pierce said. “We are excited to bring in the Top-8 teams from our league onto this campus and running a tournament that we hope will be first class and something all the fans from these other schools will enjoy.”

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The Trojans joined the Sun Belt in 2006 and Pierce said 2009 was the first opportunity Troy had to host the postseason tournament and the university jumped on it. The renovation of the complex and field helped Troy land this year’s tournament.

Pierce said there has been a lot of organization work put in by the Troy staff and he cannot wait for the tournament to begin.

“We feel like everyone will walk away with a positive experience here in Troy,” he said. “We want the great baseball community in the city of Troy to experience the entire tournament. It starts at 9 in the morning and it is in the middle of the week, so I understand there are some complications, but if you have the opportunity to come out for other games besides the late game or our game I would encourage all the baseball fans to try and make arrangements to do so to enjoy and experience the tournament as a whole.”

Pierce said the Sun Belt Conference likes to rotate the host site of the tournament so the teams are not going to the same place every year.

“When we first bid for this tournament we didn’t have anything built, but we are so fortunate, thankful and appreciative those visions quickly moved along,” Pierce said.

The tournament will open May 20 at 9 a.m. and will run through May 23, but the teams and seeds will not be determined until Saturday night.

Troy will host a Family Fun Night May 19 beginning at 6:30 p.m. with the Sun Belt awards at Riddle-Pace. There will be a home run derby and a fireworks show after the awards.