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      SU's Rob Long to throw first pitch at Chiefs home opener

      Syracuse, NY"The Syracuse Chiefs, Triple-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, are pleased to announce that former Syracuse University punter Rob Long will throw out the ceremonial first pitch on Opening Day, this Wednesday, April 13.

      Long, 22, completed his four-year playing career at SU this past season when he was named to the All-BIG EAST second team. A two-time team captain, Long burst onto the scene as a freshman in 2007 when he also earned second team All-BIG EAST honors and was named a Sporting Newsand College Sports Report All American. He was named to the All-BIG EAST first team as a junior in 2009 and also earned a spot on the conference TMs All-Academic Team following his junior and senior campaigns.

      His punting average of 43.84 yards ranked second in the conference and 25th nationally last season. However, his season was cut short in early December when a tumor was found on his brain, causing Long to miss SU TMs victory over Kansas State in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl. After undergoing surgery in December followed by radiation and chemotherapy treatments, Long received good news last month when an MRI showed no more signs of a tumor. The native of Downingtown, PA remains on track to graduate this May.

      We are very honored that Rob Long will be a part of the festivities on Opening Day, said Chiefs General Manager John Simone. Throughout his time in Syracuse, and especially in the last few months, Rob Long has shown great sportsmanship, courage and perseverance. Opening Day is a time of optimism for baseball fans, but Rob TMs story goes way beyond that. The Chiefs will begin the home portion of their 2011 schedule by hosting the Pawtucket Red Sox at 2:00pm on Wednesday, April 13, for the 15th Opening Day at Alliance Bank Stadium. Season tickets, the all-inclusive Rail Plan partial season ticket package, and single-game tickets for all home games are on sale now and can be purchased in person at the Chiefs Ticket Office at Alliance Bank Stadium, by calling 315-474-7833, or online at Courtesy: Syracuse Chiefs