Belmont baseball finds a way — and a place — to play Monday

Monday, May 3, 2010 at 12:52pm
Shelby baseball park

Dave Jarvis is quick to stress that weekend floods are an inconvenience but not a tragedy for him and his Belmont baseball team.

“We’re very fortunate that we’re only worrying about baseball issues and not our homes or the much more tragic situations that people in Nashville are dealing with,” he said.

The Bruins quickly found a place and a time to play. They faced Atlantic Sun Conference foe North Florida in doubleheader, 2 p.m. Monday at Lipscomb University’s Ken Dugan Field.

The next challenge was to find enough equipment.

Shelby Park, where Belmont practices and plays, is one of the many areas affected by flooding, which resulted from record rainfall on Saturday and Sunday.

“We have not been able to get to Shelby Park, which is where the majority of our equipment is,” Jarvis said. “So at this time we have no idea about the extent of the damage.”

He conceded that “it’s quite possibly so” that most or all of their equipment has been lost.

Belmont was scheduled to play a three-game series with North Florida over the weekend – a doubleheader Saturday and one game Sunday – at Shelby Park. None were played.

Conference rules allow members three days to complete a conference series. With Monday an option, and with an assist from neighboring Lipscomb, two of those three contests are now likely to be scheduled.

Lipscomb played a doubleheader Friday against Jacksonville. The third game of that series was rained out.

“When the stadium was built (in 1991) coach Dugan was asked if he wanted to put extra money into the stands or into the field,” Lipscomb athletics director Philip Hutcheson said. “He chose the field, and that thing drains like a champ.

“Sure we have a rivalry with Belmont, but it’s a friendly rivalry and we want to do everything we can to help anyone who needs it.”

Things worked out well for the Bruins, who won both games -- 4-1 and 15-9, respectively -- against the conference's second-place team. Junior Nate Woods set the school's single-season record for RBIs 67) and tied the mark for home runs (17).

With finals set to start this week, Belmont’s next scheduled game is May 12, and that is on the road at UT-Martin. Its next scheduled home game is May 14, a doubleheader against Campbell.

That means there is time to sort through many of the issues the program now faces – once it finishes the two games with North Florida, that is.

“Lipscomb has been very gracious in allowing us to use their field, Jarvis said. “We’ll find other baseballs, gloves and bats.”