Jan. 28, 1998

Texas Tech's Bard Selected for Third USA Baseball Team

USA Baseball team invites first nine players to national team training camp

LUBBOCK, Texas - Texas Tech sophomore catcher Josh Bard was one of nine players to be invited to USA Baseball's summer camp for the 1998 USA Baseball Team. The invitation marks the third straight year that Bard will play for a USA Baseball sponsored National Team.

Bard has already had international experience while playing for the 1997 USA Baseball Team and the 1996 USA Junior National Team. He was one of five players selected to the team for the second straight year including Texas A&M's Casey Fossum, Baylor's Jason Jennings, Clemson's Ryan Mottl and North Carolina's Brian Roberts. Bard was joined on that team by Texas Tech head coach Larry Hays and pitcher Monty Ward.

Summer camp for the USA Baseball Team is scheduled to open June 1, 1998 at Hi Corbett Field in Tucson, Ariz., home of the USA Baseball and Cactus League spring training home of the Colorado Rockies. All nine invitees attended the 1998 USA Baseball National Team Trials at Hi Corbett Field in November, 1997. This year's World Championship is slated for July 21-August 2 and will feature World Champion Cuba, host country Italy, Korea, Japan, Chinese Taipei, China, Netherlands, Spain and Russia. In addition, five teams will qualify from the Americas. The African and Oceanian champion will also compete.

In addiiton to its international competition schedule, the USA Baseball National Team, led by former Mississippi State coach Ron Polk, will also play a majority of stateside games at Hi Corbett Field against international baseball powers such as Cuba, Japan, Korea and Australia. The squad will also visit several US cities on its domestic exhibition tour prior to the World Championship.

Texas Tech opens its 1998 season on the road on Tuesday, Feb. 3 at New Mexio in Albuquerque. The Red Raiders play the annual Texas Tech alumni game this Saturday beginning at 1 p.m. at Dan Law Field.

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