Monday March 5, 2012UF Baseball's Taylor Gushue Named SEC Freshman Of The Week For Second Time
University of Florida catcher/first baseman/designated hitter Taylor Gushue (Boca Raton, Fla.) was chosen as the Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Week on Monday for the second time in three weeks after helping the top-ranked Gators (10-1) to a three-game sweep of previously unbeaten No. 8 Miami (8-3) in Coral Gables. It marked just the second time in school history that UF had claimed all three games over the Hurricanes at Mark Light Field and head coach Kevin O’Sullivan’s club has now taken the last 11 meetings against UM.
During the weekend set with Miami, Gushue hit .400 (4-for-10), with four RBI, three runs and a pair of homers. In Saturday night’s series-clinching victory, the rookie tied the game at 3-3 with a fourth-inning solo shot right after junior Brian Johnson’s (Cocoa Beach, Fla.) two-run jack and snapped a 5-5 stalemate the following inning with a towering three-run bomb that landed in the third level of the parking garage overlooking right field. Gushue added a single in the sixth and was hit by a pitch in the eighth on his way to a career-best 3-for-4, four-RBI performance. In Sunday’s dramatic come-from-behind win for the Orange and Blue, as the Gators scored five runs in the ninth to turn a 5-3 deficit into an 8-5 triumph, Gushue was 1-for-3 with a run scored and was hit by a pitch in the last inning with the score tied.
On the season, Gushue has made 10 starts (five as the designated hitter, three at first base and two at catcher) and is batting .333 (11-for-33) with nine RBI, eight runs, six walks, three homers, two doubles and a triple, to go along with a slugging percentage of .727 and an on-base percentage of .463.
LSU junior first baseman Mason Katz was tabbed as the SEC Player of the Week, while Georgia sophomore left-hander Alex Wood was the league’s Pitcher of the Week. The No. 1 Gators return to action on Tuesday at 7 p.m. to face Florida Atlantic (8-4) at McKethan Stadium. Freshman left-hander Bobby Poyner (Wellington, Fla.) (0-0, 1.93) will make his collegiate starting debut against Owl senior southpaw Josh Gonzaga (0-0, 5.62).