By CHRISSY SMITH
Tammany West Sports
MANDEVILLE — Mitch Sewald is hoping to bring home a national title to Mandeville.
Sewald, who is from?Mandeville, is a member of the LSU Tigers baseball team. He was a 2012 first-team All-State pitcher at Rummel High in Metairie, posting a 5-1 mark in 2012 with 64 innings pitched, 88 strikeouts, a 0.98 ERA, and a .120 opponent batting average.
Sewald hasn’t pitched much for LSU this season, but in his game against Southern, Sewald tosses two innings in relief, giving up two hits and no runs, striking out one. But Sewald has become known for his postgame speeches, even as a freshman. Sewald is one of LSU’s five freshman pitchers.
Earlier in the season, Sewald suffered foot and shoulder injuries, which were part of the reason he didn’t see the mound until April 9.
“He kind of got behind from a health standpoint,” LSU pitching coach Alan Dunn said in an interview with the Daily Reveille. “So we’re trying to play catch-up a little bit and get him as many opportunities on the mound as we can so that he’s feeling his release point and feeling comfortable with locating his stuff.”
In 2012, Sewald pitched a perfect game against West Ouachita High School. He also won 2012 first-team All-District and first-team All-New Orleans Metro recognition, and was an honors graduate named to the Louisiana Academic All-State team.
He is the son of Chris and Tina Sewald, and has one brother, Kyle.
“I love the atmosphere and the people in Baton Rouge. The coaching staff is excellent and LSU is one of the best programs in the nation,” Sewald said.
The Tigers baseball team, who claimed a 5-4, 11-inning victory against Vanderbilt in a showdown for the SEC tournament title Sunday in Hoover, Ala., already knew they were a lock for a top-eight national seed and host a regional at Alex Box Stadium this weekend.
After playing five games in five days to win the SEC tournament with a 4-1 record, the Tigers, who received a No. 4 national seed, returned around 3:30 a.m. Monday.
LSU will play Southwestern Athletic Conference champion Jackson State, the regional’s No. 4 seed, at 2 p.m. Friday. The winner of the Baton Rouge Regional will advance to the super regionals to play the winner of the Blacksburg (Va.) Regional.
LSU will begin the road to the College World Series in Omaha, Neb., where the Tigers haven’t been since capturing the school’s sixth national title in 2009, in familiar surroundings. They will also be playing with lots of confidence after winning the SEC Western Division title and tournament championship — their first since 2010 — thanks to the win against Vandy.
LSU fell short of going to Omaha last year when Stony Brook shocked them in winning the best-of-three super regional series in Alex Box.
North Carolina got the top seed this year, while Vanderbilt was No. 2 despite losing to LSU in the SEC title game. Oregon State received the No. 3 seed, which was a bit of a surprise.