Feb. 14, 2012
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By Eric DeSalvo
ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - Part five of UCFAthletics.com's season preview of the 2012 UCF baseball team focuses on the third basemen, a group that is highlighted by several key platoon players.
-Jr. Chris Taladay - Injuries shortened his 2011 campaign in which he started 38 games. Will see time in LF, 3B and behind the plate
-Jr. Nick Carrillo - Power lefty from Glendale, Ariz., who will see time in LF, 3B and behind the plate
-Jr. Austin Johnston - Another utility player for the Knights who has 54 career starts in the infield
-Fr. Chase Darhower - Lengthy infielder from Panhandle who finished the fall with a strong performance in Black and Gold World Series
Just like left field and catcher, third base will be another platoon position with Carrillo and Taladay seeing the majority of time at the hot corner. With the departure of 2011 full-timer at third, Derek Luciano, Taladay will return to the position where he played 30 games in his freshman All-America campaign.
Carrillo arrives at UCF with stellar credentials from Central Arizona College. He was named to the 2011 Junior College World Series All-Tournament Team after hitting .409 in the series with 10 runs scored. The power lefty will be a key bat in the UCF lineup.
Along with Spencer Haynes, Johnston will be another utility infielder the Knights can use at multiple positions. In 2010, he started 44 games at second base and has eight career starts at third base as well. Johnston will provide a plethora of experience when in the lineup.
The rookie, Darhower, arrives on campus after earning three letters as an infielder and pitcher for head coach Gerry McDermott at Niceville High School. The two-time Under Armour Preseason All-America selection concluded a nice fall camp that included a two-run homer in game one of the Black and Gold World Series.
Opening Knight is quickly approaching, as UCF will open its newly renovated ballpark against Long Island this Friday at 6:30 p.m. in game one of a three-game weekend series. The game is FREE for everyone who makes it out to the UCF baseball complex. Season and single-game tickets are on sale now and can be purchased by calling (407) 823-1000 or by visiting UCFAthletics.com's Tickets section.