Behind three RBI apiece from freshman Josh Adams (Jacksonville,
Fla.) and senior Bryson Barber (Pensacola,
Fla.) and a 3-for-5, four-run
outing by junior Avery Barnes (High
Springs, Fla.), Florida (5-0) completed a doubleheader sweep of Eastern
Michigan (0-6) on Wednesday night with a 16-8 victory at McKethan
Stadium. The Gators handled the Eagles in this afternoon’s opener, 15-2, and
totaled 31 runs, 30 hits, 17 walks, 10 stolen bases and four homers during the twinbill. Junior J.K.
Fla.) worked 2.1 innings out
of the bullpen to earn his first victory since March 8, 2006, a 3-1 decision
over UNC Greensboro.
“It was nice to swing the bats well today,” head
coach Kevin O’Sullivan said. “I
think that any time there are back-to-back games and a team can have a 9-1 lead
after two innings both times, it should take a lot of pressure off the pitching
staff. Obviously, jumping out to an early lead helps and I was pleased with how
many different players contributed to the two wins.”
continued its offensive production by jumping on rookie starter Jordan
Goldschmidt (0-1) for five hits and three runs in the first inning, featuring a
bases-clearing double by Adams (1-for-3, two
runs). Barnes walked to start things
off and sophomore Clayton Pisani (Naples, Fla.) was hit by a pitch before sophomore Cole Figueroa (Tallahassee, Fla.) (2-for-3, three runs, two stolen
bases) sliced an RBI single through the right side of the infield. Although Figueroa was picked off, senior Brandon McArthur (Seffner,
Fla.) (1-for-2, three
runs) and freshman Matt den Dekker (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) earned
free passes to load the bases. Adams ripped his first career double into right
to increase his team-leading RBI total to 10 and sophomore Jonathan Pigott (Ormond Beach, Fla.)
(2-for-3) later added a two-out single up the middle for a 5-0 count.
The Eagles filled the bags with one down in the
second against freshman right-hander Travis
Lawler (College Station, Texas)
courtesy of two hit batters and a base-hit by junior Kyle Rhoad
(4-for-6, three runs, three RBI). A walk to senior Steve Bradshaw put the
visitors on the board before Lawler had sophomore Andrew Marshall fly out to
Florida roared back by sending nine men to the
plate in the bottom of the frame and tallied four runs on five
hits and an EMU error to take a 9-1 advantage. Barnes opened with a single,
moved to second on balk, stole third and scored on a throwing error by freshman
catcher Matt Skirving. Figueroa doubled to left,
swiped third and came home on a two-bagger by McArthur. Following a four-pitch,
two-out walk to Adams, Barber collected his
second career triple to put the hosts up by eight runs.
answered with four runs on five hits in the third, highlighted by a three-run
homer by Rhoad, to narrow the gap to 9-5 and chase
Lawler. Back-to-back singles by Skirving and freshman
Zack Leonard after a fielder’s choice by Powell loaded the bases for the
Eagles. Sophomore Aaron Crooks had a sac fly to right and Rhoad
cranked his second homer of the year to left field to reduce the visitors’
deficit to four runs. An infield hit by junior Jim Gulliver ended the night for
Lawler, who yielded eight hits and five runs over 2.2 innings, with three K and
three hit batters.
on two unearned runs in the third when den Dekker’s pop-up to second base was
dropped and increased its lead to 12-5 when Barber led off the home part of the
fourth with a solo blast to right center. Soon after, Barnes reached on a
two-out single, stole second and came all the way around to score on a throwing
error on the play by Skirving for a seven-run
cushion. EMU took advantage of two Gator errors in the fifth for a 13-7 score
before Figueroa came home on a wild pitch from freshman reliever Robert Hamly, who had taken over for Goldschmidt (0-1, 4.0 IP, 10
H, 13 R, 7 BB, 3 K).
Senior Jeff Davis (2-for-5) stroked an RBI single
in the seventh off sophomore reliever Tony
Davis (Cooper City,
Fla.) and Barnes connected on his first
four-bagger of the season with Pigott aboard in the
eighth to complete the scoring at 16-8. Eastern Michigan
out-hit the Gators, 13-12, as Rhoad was 4-for-6 with
three runs and three RBI out of the leadoff slot. Four different UF players
turned in multiple-hit outings and four individuals drew at least two of the
squad’s season-high 12 walks.
The Gators will make their first road trip of the
season when they travel to Coral Gables for a
three-game series against eighth-ranked Miami
(3-0). Sophomore RHP Kyle Mullaney (Jacksonville,
Fla.) will oppose Hurricane
sophomore left-hander Eric Erickson in Friday’s opener at 7 p.m.
last time the Gators started 5-0 was in 2002, when they reeled off
11-straight wins to begin the season.
- Florida drew a season-high 12 walks
from Eastern Michigan’s four pitchers.
was a perfect 10-for-10 on the basepaths during
the double-dip and Cole Figueroa (7-for-7) has already matched his theft
total from last season.
the day, the Gators hit .441 (30-for-68) and outscored the Eagles, 31-10.
O’Sullivan used a total of eight pitchers during the two games, and the
staff registered a 3.94 earned run average with 18 K and five walks.
Barnes (6-for-9) and Jonathan Pigott (4-for-6)
tied for the team lead with a .667 average versus Eastern