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Pirates setting model for Mercer Baseball success

Mercer Baseball Coach Craig Gibson talks about the Bears' matchup with East Carolina on the road this weekend. /(Luke Hetrick, WGXA)

The rise of the Mercer Baseball program under Craig Gibson has been outstanding. From an opponent schedule for three wins to a highly competitive mid-major the Bears are now a legitimate NCAA Tournament threat year after year.

The rise is very similar to the model of East Carolina. Once a small time mid-major the Pirates have become a College World Series title contender annually. That's the standard Mercer wants to reach next, but first the Bears will do everything they can to take a series from the purple and gold this weekend.

"Their program is where we want to get ours to," Gibson said. "We want to get to the regional stage, then onto the super regional format with a chance to finish in the big game. It'll be a huge test for us but we're excited to get up there."\\

After a thrilling extra-inning win at Georgia Tuesday night, Mercer looks to carry the momentum to North Carolina this weekend against the 8th ranked team in the nation.

"It's a good way to get into SoCon play right after this weekend," said Senior Pitcher Ryan Askew. "I think for us we really take this series if things don't go the way that we want in the SoCon."

Due to the threat of inclement weather, Mercer and East Carolina will play a doubleheader Friday starting at 4:00 p.m before wrapping up the series Sunday at 1.

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