CofC to face Auburn in NCAA Baseball Regional

College of Charleston's Blake Butler and the Cougars will head to Tallahassee, Fla. this weekend for the NCAA Tournament . The Cougars will face Auburn, Friday at noon at Dick Howser Stadium. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

The College of Charleston is headed back to the state of Florida for an NCAA baseball regional for the second straight year.

The No. 2 seeded Cougars (43-13) will take on third-seeded Auburn (35-24) Friday at noon in the opening game of the Tallahassee (Fla.) Regional. Florida State will face Mercer, the Southern Conference champions, at 6 p.m. Each of the 16 national teams playing regionals features four a double-elimination format.

A year ago, the Cougars won the Gainesville Regional and advanced to the Lubbock Super Regional against Texas Tech.

The Cougars are making their seventh NCAA Tournament appearance, and first back-to-back appearances since Charleston qualified for the tournament in three consecutive seasons from 2004-06. The Cougars are one of 27 teams from the field making a repeat appearance from a season ago. It’s the first NCAA Tournament appearance for Auburn since the 2010 season.

“We are really excited about the opportunity to go to Tallahassee,” said Cougars head coach Monte Lee. “It’s a place our ball club has never been before, and we are looking forward to the challenge. Our program is at a point now where we have extremely high expectations. We don’t just talk about going to the postseason anymore; we talk about winning regionals, winning super regionals, and playing in Omaha. Our guys who were with us last year got a taste of that and have the confidence of going into a regional and winning it. We absolutely feel good that we can compete and win in a regional.”