The University of Central Arkansas Bears will play their final home baseball series beginning at 6 p.m. Thursday against the No. 1 team in the Southland Conference, the Sam Houston State Bearkats.

Sam Houston, 34-17 overall, has only lost eight times in SLC play this season (22-8). UCA stands 24-26 overall and 15-15 in league play. The Bears are in sole possession of sixth place. The postseason tournament begins Wednesday in San Marcos, Texas.

UCA is coming off an impressive 2-0 shutout victory over Southeastern Conference foe Mississippi State on Tuesday night in Starkville, Miss. Juniors Ethan McKinzie and Bryce Biggerstaff combined to hold the Bulldogs to seven singles and no runs. It was MSU’s first shutout loss in non-conference action since losing to Samford in 2004.

The series will feature the two best hitting teams in the SLC. UCA is No. 1 at .293 while SHSU is second at .291. The Bearkats are second in team fielding percentage (.972), followed by the Bears in third (.968). UCA is 10th at 4.58.

The Bears have won all five of their home conference series this season. The Bearkats have a 12-9 road record this season, as opposed to 22-8 at home.

UCA will host "Senior Day" activities during the pregame of Saturday’s 1 p.m. finale. UCA’s six seniors are pitcher Ryan Angus, pitcher Blake Payne, third baseman/designated hitter Blake Roberts, catcher Travis Snider, pitcher Andy Steinmetz and first baseman Bryan Willson.