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Baseball team heads to Florida, season opener Saturday

WATERVILLE, Maine -- With the top eight pitchers in earned run average returning from an improved pitching staff and the top three hitters, the Colby College baseball team has reason for optimism heading into the 2018 season.

Colby opens the season Saturday at 11 a.m. with a doubleheader against Keuka College on the spring break Florida trip to Auburndale/Winter Haven. 
"We have a great mix of veterans and young players that understand they need to relax, play with confidence, and execute the fundamentals," Colby head coach Dale Plummer said. "We strive to focus on winning one pitch at a time and winning as many of those little battles as we can."
The pitching staff will have that mix among the starters. Brooks Parker (Weston, Mass.) will get the opening day starter in game one Saturday after posting a 3.31 earned run average. First-year Paul Ariola (Malverne, N.Y.) gets the start in the nightcap Saturday. 
Sophomore Emery Dinsmore (Waldo, Maine) had six starts and made 14 appearances on the mound last year. He will pitch the third game of the trip and senior John Baron (Medfield, Mass.) will pitch game two on Sunday. Baron led the team in earned run average (1.77).
First-year Frank Driscoll (Philadelphia, Pa.) will be another starter for the Mules. Colby did lose pitcher Bobby Forese (New Canaan, Conn.) to an injury and first-year Cam Garfield (Wellesley, Mass.) would have started on the trip but is sick.
The bullpen will feature Jackson Ward (Wilton, Conn.) returning as the closer after recording four saves and 2.57 earned run average last year. Senior Dan Schoenfeld (Evanston, Ill.) will be the set-up man. Junior Will Cohen (Wellesley, Mass.) can either start or pitch in long relief.
Sophomore George Schmidt (Worcester, Mass.) will start and handle the catching duties. First-year catchers Jonah Katz (Point Lookout, N.Y.) and Ryan Hecht (Wauwatosa, Wis.) also will catch.
Ben Coleman (Yarmouth, Maine) and Matt Treveloni (Ashland, Mass.), the top two hitters for the Mules last year return in the outfield and will play with right fielder Will Phillips. Coleman (pictured) hit a team-best .415 and led in on-base percentage (.529) and stolen bases (14). Treveloni batted .333 and added six stolen bases. Cam Drew (Plymouth, Mass.), Matt Mitchell (Wayzata, Minn.), and Keenan Iuliano (Waltham, Mass.) could play in the outfield.
Tyler Mulberry (Middletown, Conn.) will start at shortstop after hitting .304 last year. Garcia will play third base, Ward is back at second base, and William Wessman (Dallas, Texas) returns at first base. Iuliano will be a back-up to Wessman at first base and Mitchell is capable of playing anywhere in the infield.
First-years Andrew Russell (Massapequa, N.Y.), Tommy McGee (Bowie, Md.), Jack Mangold (Shrewsbury, N.J.), and Chris Romano (Yarmouth, Maine) are all infielders.
Junior Andrew Sterup (Billings, Mont.) hit .275 and had a pair of homers last year. He will be the Mules' designated hitter.