Tuesday April 14, 2009No. 20 Baseball Subdues No. 15 FSU, 10-2
A five-run first inning and three homers powered No. 20 Florida (24-12) to a 10-2 victory over No. 15 Florida State (21-12) on Tuesday night in front of 6,345 fans at Dick Howser Stadium, the 12th-largest crowd in school history. The win enabled the Gators to claim the regular-season series between the Sunshine State rivals.
Making his collegiate starting debut, freshman right-hander Greg Larson (Longwood, Fla.) (3-1) limited the Seminoles to one hit over a career-high 4.1 innings before reaching a predetermined pitch count. UF raced out to a 10-0 lead before the hosts got on the board in the seventh.
The Gators sent nine batters to the plate and tallied five runs on four hits in the first stanza against senior Bo O’Dell (3-2), highlighted by a three-run homer from senior Avery Barnes (High Springs, Fla.) (4-for-5). Junior Matt den Dekker (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) (2-for-4, two runs) was hit by a pitch to begin the game and freshman Daniel Pigott (Ormond Beach, Fla.) followed with an infield single. Barnes sent a 2-0 pitch over the right-field fence for his sixth homer. Freshman Preston Tucker (Tampa, Fla.) extended his hitting streak to seven games with a base-hit and sophomore Josh Adams (Jacksonville, Fla.) (2-for-4, two runs) stroked a single into left for a pair of runners aboard. A fielder’s choice by senior Brandon McArthur (Seffner, Fla.) erased Tucker at third base and a walk to junior Buddy Munroe (Miami, Fla.) loaded the bases with one down. Senior Teddy Foster (Jacksonville, Fla.) (2-for-3, three RBI) lofted his first sacrifice fly of the year and McArthur later came home on a wild pitch for a 5-0 lead. O’Dell was lifted after an inning in which he threw 37 pitches.
Larson did not permit a hit until FSU sophomore Rafael Lopez singled with two down in the third inning. After the righty committed a balk and issued a walk to sophomore Tyler Holt, he had a ground ball by junior Stephen Cardullo force Holt at second base for the final out of the frame.
An RBI grounder by Tucker in the fifth increased Florida’s lead to 6-0. den Dekker legged out bunt to start the inning and was sacrificed into scoring position on a sacrifice by Pigott. Barnes had an infield single off sophomore reliever Tyler Everett for runners on the corners and Tucker drove in his team-leading 46th run with a ground ball to first base.
After walking freshman James Ramsey with one down in the fifth, Larson was replaced by junior Tony Davis (Cooper City, Fla.). Over 4.1 innings, Larson gave up one hit, yielded four walks and had one strikeout. Davis kept the Seminoles off the board by inducing back-to-back groundouts from Lopez and Holt.
Foster clubbed his second homer of the season with two out in the sixth to build the Gators’ margin to 8-0. McArthur had poked a single into right center and Munroe flew out to straightaway center field for the second out. Foster then launched a towering fly over the fence in left field. Junior Mike Mooney (Loxahatchee, Fla.) earned a free pass and den Dekker smoked his fourth double for runners on second and third, ending the night for Everett (4.2 IP, 6 H, 3 R). Sophomore Ryan Vigue prevented further scoring in the frame by having Pigott ground out to first base.
Adams jacked his fifth homer to deep center with Barnes aboard in the seventh for a 10-0 advantage. The Seminoles answered with a two-run homer by senior Tommy Oravetz in the home part of the stanza after sophomore Mike McGee (2-for-4) had delivered a leadoff triple into left center. After sophomore Jack Posey smashed a single off Davis’ glove, the southpaw had Ramsey bounce into a 4-6-3 double play and Lopez line out to center.
Davis worked 2.2 innings, giving up three hits and two runs, before junior Billy Bullock (Balm, Fla.) registered four strikeouts in two scoreless frames to close the game. Florida held a 13-6 advantage in hits, with four players notching multiple-hit outings. The Gators return to McKethan Stadium to face Stetson tomorrow night at 6:30 p.m. The Orange and Blue posted a 5-2 win over the Hatters on March 3 in DeLand.