Increasing the toughness of the schedule via good non-conference competition and entering a new, tougher conference may make the University of Cincinnati Clermont College’s record not appear as good as some previous campaigns, but that does not take away from the fact that this year’s edition of the Red and Black will be improved and more competitive.
“We anticipate a good season. We have a tougher schedule, though,” said assistant head coach Dino Costanzo. The schedule includes the addition of National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) opponents who play a tougher brand of baseball than the squads UC Clermont has most often faced in the past.
The Cougars have a quartet of veteran standouts to lead them onto the field – first baseman Dominic Costanzo, third baseman Bobby Noeth, left fielder Andrew Hord, and center fielder Steve Hendrickson.
"We're in a new conference (Ohio Collegiate Athletic Conference) and that is a huge positive. It's nice to be considered one of the best programs in the new conference," said Costanzo.
"There's no doubt we have a better ball team this year and the program is building and getting more solid."
The Cougars' roster:
Nate Bromagem, freshman infielder, Glen Este High School graduate; Jeff Case, junior infielder, New Richmond High School graduate; Alex Fisler, freshman outfielder, Batavia High School graduate; Brandon Fuller, freshman right hand pitcher, Glen Este High School graduate; Nate Hirsch, junior left hand pitcher, Loveland High School graduate; Andrew Hord, sophomore outfielder, Glen Este High School graduate; Brandon Huber, sophomore right hand pitcher, Amelia High School graduate; Nate Jancsics, freshman right hand pitcher, Loveland High School graduate; J. D. Little, freshman catcher, Batavia High School graduate; James Pulskamp, sophomore left hand pitcher, Amelia High School graduate; Chris Alfaro, sophomore infielder, Anderson High graduate; Zach Barkalow, sophomore outfielder, Summit Country Day School graduate; Jarred Chapman, sophomore left hand pitcher, Lakota West High graduate; Dominic Costanzo, junior first baseman, Mariemont High graduate; Andrew Garrett, freshman outfielder, Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy graduate; Brandon Heineman, sophomore right hand pitcher, Calvary Christian (Ky.) High graduate; Steve Hendrickson, sophomore outfielder, Dayton Wayne High graduate; Chris Hundley, freshman right hand pitcher, Colerain High graduate; Andrew McPheters, freshman catcher, Colerain High graduate; Jeff Muse, sophomore outfielder, Oak Hills High graduate; Bobby Noeth, junior infielder, Western Brown High graduate; Travis Orr, freshman right hand pitcher, Eastern High graduate; Chris Seager, sophomore pitcher, Moeller High graduate; Tyler Sluter, freshman pitcher, Norwood High graduate; Ryan Stang, junior right hand pitcher, Colerain High graduate; Mike Stidham, sophomore catcher/outfielder, Lakota West High graduate; and Chris Tillery, sophomore right hand pitcher, Eastern High graduate.
The Cougars' home field site is at the new Crosley Field in Blue Ash, 11540 Grooms Rd.
The remainder of the Cougars' schedule, including starting time and location is as follows:
April 8 at Miami University - Middletown; April 9 Southern States, 4 p. m. (CF); April 10 Miami University - Hamilton, 1 p.m . (CF - doubleheader); April 11 Clark State University, 1 p. m. (CF - doubleheader); April 13 at Miami University - Middletown; April 15 at Clark State University; April 16 at Ohio Christian University;
April 17 Ohio University - Chillicothe, 1 p.m. (CF - doubleheader); April 18 Ohio State University - Mansfield, 1 p. m. (CF - doubleheader); April 20 at Miami University - Hamilton; Apr. 23 Ohio Christian University, 3 p.m. (CF - doubleheader); Apr. 24 Miami University - Middletown, 1 p.m. (CF - doubleheader); April 25 at Ohio State University - Mansfield, 1 p.m. (doubleheader); April 27 at Miami University - Hamilton, 6 p.m.; and May 4 at Wilmington College, 4 p.m.
The members of the Ohio Collegiate Athletic Conference are Clermont College (3,241 students); Clark State Community College Eagles (3,340), Springfield, Ohio; Ohio Christian University Trailblazers (700), Circleville, Ohio; Ohio State University - Mansfield Mavericks (1,610), Mansfield, Ohio; Ohio State University - Marion Scarlet Wave (1,485), Marion, Ohio; Southern State Community College Patriots (900), Hillsboro, Ohio; Temple Baptist College Rams (200), Cincinnati; and World Harvest Bible College Warriors (450), Canal Winchester, Ohio.
The Ohio Collegiate Athletic Conference sponsors championships in men's baseball, men's basketball, golf, women's fast pitch softball, women's basketball, women's volleyball, and men's soccer.