NIAGARA UNIVERSITY, N.Y. – Junior pitcher Matthew Brash has had a solid start to his third year in with the Purple Eagles. In the Purple Eagles’ 1-0 win over Rider on Mar. 23rd, Brash threw his first career complete game shutout, in which he struck out 9 batters, and allowed just one walk and six hits. As a result, the Kingston, ON native was awarded MAAC Pitcher of the Week. Brash also leads the MAAC in strikeouts (64).
“Personally, I haven’t pitched to what I’m capable of,” Brash mentioned. “I’ve had some solid outings, but a couple performances have been unacceptable, and haven’t given my team a chance to win. However, I’ll always be confident in my ability and know I’ll dominate conference play.”
The 2019 season has been a rough one for the Purple Eagles. The team is currently 6-18 overall and 2-4 in conference play, after being swept by Quinnipiac in three straight games.
“When you look at our record, it’s a little deceiving,” Brash explained. “Sure we don’t have a lot of wins, but we’ve improved every game. With such a young team this year, getting freshmen and sophomores the experience of pre-conference play was so valuable and I know the win column will be filled up in conference.”
The tough start for the team can in part be attributed to the large numbers of underclassmen on the roster. This year’s team boasts 12 freshmen and 8 sophomores. Brash mentions that the leadership from juniors and seniors is crucial to the team’s success.
“Since we have such a young team, it’s been so important that the older guys step up and guide them towards success,” Brash stated. “We have such a close group of guys that I don’t think there’s just one individual leading us, but more everyone sharing their knowledge and experiences whenever they can.”
With a team dominated by first and second year players, there are going to be things done. The team will look to improve in different areas as the season continues to be prepared for the postseason.
“We need to improve on limiting the number of free bases we give up,” Brash explained. “… this means cutting down on things that we can control, like errors and walks. If we can shut down these mistakes, we have the talent and preparation to win a lot of games in conference.”
The next time the Purple Eagles will be at home is when they host St. Bonaventure for a doubleheader on Tuesday, April 9.
Statistics as of Apr. 1, 2019