Cowboys picked second in SLC

Special to the American Press

McNeese State, the 2019 Southland Conference Tournament champion, was voted to finish second to two-time defending regular-season champion Sam Houston State in the SLC preseason baseball poll.

McNeese received seven of the 26 first-place votes for 256 points. Four of the Cowboys’ league-high six preseason all-conference selection were on the first team — second baseman Nate Fisbeck, shortstop Reid Bourque, designated hitter Clayton Rasbeary and pitcher Will Dion. Fisbeck and second-team utility selection Jake Dickerson represented McNeese on the all-tournament team after the 2019 conference title.

The Bearkats received 16 first-team votes for 278 points. They were 20-10 in league play in 2019 to claim their sixth regular-season crown in eight years. A third consecutive title in 2021 would mark the sixth time in the league’s history for a team to achieve that feat and make the Bearkats the first program to do it twice.

Sam Houston State garnered four preseason all-conference honorees, led by reigning SLC Hitter of the Year Colton Cowser, who enters the season ranked as the No. 13 prospect for the MLB First-Year Player Draft by MLB.com.

The season opens Feb. 19 with all 13 teams scheduled to play.

McNeese was 10-7 and about to open the SLC schedule against Lamar when the season was shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Cowboys were 35-26 in 2019, including 16-14 in the SLC, and won the conference tournament. They went two-and-out in the NCAA Nashville Regional, losing to Indians and Ohio State, both by one run.

The Cowboys’ open the 56-game schedule on Feb. 19 with a three-game series at Alabama. There are 29 home games on the schedule. The SLC schedule will consist of a 40-game schedule — four-game series against 10 teams.

McNeese is scheduled to visit LSU on April 6.McNeese athletics

McNeese State University

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