Whitworth to Face La Verne in NCAA Regional Opener

SPOKANE, Wash. – Whitworth will face La Verne at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday evening during the opening round of the NCAA Division III baseball tournament in McMinnville, Oregon. 

Click here for the McMinnville Regional host website.

The Pirates (26-13-1), making their first-ever appearance in the NCAA Division III tournament, are the number three seed in the regional after winning their first Northwest Conference title since 1991.  La Verne (25-14), champions of the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletics Conference, is the #4 seed.

Concordia (Texas) is the top-seed at the McMinnville Regional.  The Tornados (36-9, ranked 12th in the D3baseball.com poll) are the regular season and tournament champions of the American Southwest Conference.

Trinity (Texas) is seeded second after picking up one of 16 pool C (at-large bids).  The Tigers (34-10, ranked 15th) were regular season champions of their division in the Southern Collegiate Athletics Conference, but lost in the conference tournament.

Two teams from the Midwest round out the six-team regional.  Coe (Iowa) is the #5 seed.  The Kohawks (32-12) won the Iowa Intercollegiate Athletics Conference tournament after finishing second during the regular season. 

St. John's (Minn.) is the #6 seed.  The Johnnies (29-14) finished second in the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletics Conference during the regular season, but upset 2nd-ranked St. Thomas in the championship game of the MIAC Tournament.

The winner of the McMinnville Regional will play the winner of the Marietta (Ohio) Regional in the opening round of the NCAA Division III Baseball Championships in Appleton, Wisconsin (May 25-29).

The Whitworth-La Verne game is the final contest on Wednesday. Concordia will play St. John's at noon, followed by Trinity vs. Coe at 3:30 p.m.

Whitworth is the only team from the NWC selected to play in the 2012 NCAA Tournament.  Neither Pacific (Ore.) – the NWC co-champions – or regional-host Linfield was awarded an at-large bid to this year's tournament.

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