SPRINGFIELD – The Drury baseball program received an at-large bid to the NCAA-II Midwest Regional marking the fifth time in the program’s 11-year history they have advanced to the national championship tournament.
Drury is seeded fourth in the regional and will play fifth seeded Bellarmine in the opening round of the double-elimination tournament on Thursday in Midland, Michigan.
The Panthers are 36-18, won the Great Lakes Valley Conference’s West Division in the regular season going 19-9 in the league and they advanced to the GLVC tournament championship game falling 4-3 to Quincy on Sunday in Ozark.
Bellarmine is 34-19 and went 20-8 in the conference to finish in second place in the GLVC-East. Drury’s opening round game against the Knights will also be a rematch of the Panthers’ dramatic win in the second round of the GLVC tournament. On Friday, the two teams traded leads in the ninth inning and Drury defeated Bellarmine with a bottom of the ninth hit by Nic Perkins that drove in two runs to give the Panthers a 6-5 win.
Northwood (Mich.) (43-11) is the top seed and will play Kentucky Wesleyan (27-22). Southern Indiana (32-19) is seeded second and plays number seven seed Saint Joseph’s (34-20) in the first round. GLVC tournament champion Quincy (32-20), seeded third, will play sixth seeded Wayne State (Mich.) (31-9) in the opening round as well. Game times and a tournament schedule will be released later this week.
The Midwest Regional is part of the NCAA-II national tournament field that features 56 teams competing at eight regional sites in double-elimination play. The regional champions will advance to the championship finals tournament, held May 27-June 3 at The Ballpark in Grand Prairie, Texas.