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Southern Miss Baseball opens Fall Practice on Friday

The Southern Miss baseball team opens its six-week fall practice schedule this Friday as the program begins the process of again challenging for a Conference USA title as well as go after their sixth consecutive 40-win season and 18th NCAA Tournament appearance.

The Golden Eagles, which finished 40-21 and reached the NCAA Oxford Regional championship game last season, return 25 players from 2021, 23 letterwinners and two redshirts, while welcoming 14 newcomers to squad for this spring.

This veteran club returns eight position player starters from a year ago including 2021 team co-batting champion senior Gabe Montenegro, who batted .345 with four homers and 29 RBI in leftfield. Six of the seven remaining starters enter their junior campaign with third baseman Danny Lynch (.320/12/36), designated hitter Charlie Fischer (.304/7/37), second baseman Will McGillis (.236/11/35) and first baseman Christopher Sargent (.227/16/57) leading the way. Dustin Dickerson, the only sophomore starter returning, hit. 279 with two homers and 20 RBI at shortstop.

The only starter Southern Miss must replace in the field is Reed Trimble, who was taken by the Baltimore Orioles in the Competitive Balance B round as the 65th pick in this past summer’s MLB First-Year Player Draft. Trimble hit .345 with 17 homers and tied for tops in the country in RBI with 72 last spring.

On the mound, the Golden Eagles look to replace two starters and a closer.

The trio of Walker Powell, Hunter Stanley and Ryan Och combined for 24 victories and two saves in 2021, but the program does return both right-hander Ben Ethridge and left-hander Drew Boyd, who each started in significant games last season, along with Garrett Ramsey, who posted a team-high nine saves. Of the 14 newcomers, eight of those will vie for roles on the mound this spring.

Practice is open to the public and runs through Nov. 21 at Pete Taylor Park. Intrasquad scrimmages will be held each Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Games times for this weekend include 4 p.m., Friday, 12 noon Saturday and 2 p.m., Sunday.