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Sunday May 7, 2000Baseball Drops Finale 12-7 to MSU

Starkville, Miss.

Mississippi State knocked UF starter Craig Mosher for seven runs over 2.2 innings to cruise to a 12-7 victory in the series finale Sunday at Dudy Noble Field. Florida dropped to 34-20-1, 15-11-1 in SEC play, while the Bulldogs improved to 36-13, 16-8 in conference.

“Not to take anything away from Mississippi State, but I felt like we gave a game away today,” said Head Coach Andy Lopez. “We did not pitch well, especially in relief situations, and did not take advantage of our opportunities to score.”

Florida, which out-hit MSU 16-14, left a season-high 17 runners on base, stranding at least one runner in each inning.

Mosher (0-3) allowed only four hits but walked five batters to earn the early exit. After allowing a single run in the first, Mosher gave up a three-run home run to Shane Kelly in the second to erase a 3-1UF lead. MSU added three more runs in the third inning with the help of two walks that were followed by a double by Matt Maniscalco. Phil Willingham then doubled off reliever Joey Simon to complete the inning with MSU leading 7-3.

Florida scored three times early on starter Mark Freed, including a two- run home run by Mark Kiger in the second inning. But, Florida failed to get the clutch hits throughout the game as the left-hander stranded UF runners in each of the six innings.

Florida finally got to Freed (8-0) in the seventh for a pair of runs. Pete Nystrom, Tony Socarras and Aaron Sobieraj singled in consecutive at-bats to score the first run. Kevin Estrada’s sacrifice bunt then was dropped by first baseman Jon Knott to load the bases. UF added a second run on a fielder’s choice by Kiger. After a walk to Matt Siegel re-loaded the bases, Kurt Keene struck out to end the inning.

Mississippi State added two runs in the seventh inning and two in the eighth to extend their lead. Florida did post four runs in the final three innings in the comeback effort, leaving the bases loaded twice.

Florida will play its final regular season non-conference game on Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. against South Florida before playing host to Georgia to close out the regular season.
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