Matt Ridings and Mikie Minor began their collegiate baseball careers with a bang last weekend. The former Brentwood Bulldog teammates picked up right where they finished their high school and Mid-State Amateur careers.
Ridings (Western Kentucky) got the nod for a Sunday start in Wilmington, North Carolina against the Oklahoma Sooners from the powerful Big 12 Conference in the final day of the 2007 Hughes Bros. Challenge. He didn't disappoint the Hilltopper fans as he threw five scoreless innings, allowing only 5 scattered hits while striking out a pair of Sooner hitters. A seven run outburst in the top of the 6th by WKU broke a scoreless tie and secured the win for Ridings.
For his stellar work, Ridings was named the Sun Belt Conference Pitcher of the Week.
Meanwhile at the Houston College Classic in Texas, Minor (Vanderbilt) also took the mound on Sunday in his collegiate debut. The left hander entered in relief of Brett Jacobson with two outs in the bottom of the seventh against perennial collegiate power Baylor University. He then mowed down seven consecutive batters without allowing a hit and struck out two to close out the game.
Minor earned a his collegiate first save in the 7-4 victory.
Entering the game, Vanderbilt was ranked 8th, and has since moved into the top spot in the NCAA rankings.