Baseball picked as GAC Preseason favorite

RUSSELLVILLE, AR– The Great American Conference announced the results of its 2021 baseball preseason poll Tuesday.

Oklahoma Baptist finished as the favorite following a vote of the league’s head coaches.

The Bison come off a season that was directly affected by COVID-19. Before the season came to a halt, OBU had accumulated an impressive 16-6 overall record (9-3 in the GAC).

OBU received 120 total votes and 10 of the 12 first place votes as head coach Chris Cox begins his second season at the helm of the program.

Southern Arkansas came in second in the poll with 110 total votes and the other two first place votes. Harding (90), Arkansas-Monticello (83), Southwestern Oklahoma State (83), Arkansas Tech (80), Henderson State (64), Northwestern Oklahoma State (51), Southeastern (46), Ouachita Baptist (31), East Central (22) and Southern Nazarene (12) rounded out the rest of the poll.

The Bison return 10 batters which include 2019 All-American Ramon Enriquez and Kaimana Bartolome who led the team in hits, home runs and RBIs last season.

The Bison also return nine pitchers from the 2020 team. Jake Lipetzky leads the staff having posted a 2.09 ERA in 2020.

The Bison will open up their season at the West Texas A&M Festival on Feb. 5, against the host Buffalos, with first pitch set for 2 p.m.