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Tuesday March 19, 2013Florida Baseball Faces North Florida Tuesday At McKethan Stadium

Gainesville, Fla.

After opening SEC play with a 2-1 series defeat to No. 10 Kentucky, Florida (9-12) hosts North Florida (15-6) in a Tuesday night matchup at McKethan Stadium. The Ospreys swept a three-game series from Lafayette over the weekend by scores of 7-5, 7-1 and 7-1.

 

Jeff Cardozo and Larry Vettel will call the action for the Gator IMG Sports Network beginning at 7 p.m. Live audio and stats will be available on GatorZone.com and fans can also follow updates of each game on @GatorZoneBB, the official Twitter account of the Gator baseball program.

 

In a meeting of right-handers, freshman Tucker Simpson (0-1, 4.96) will start for the Gators against North Florida junior David Trexler (2-1, 2.70). Simpson has made five appearances, including four Saturday starts, and has worked 16.1 innings this year. Opponents are hitting .262 against him, and he has recorded 15 strikeouts and permitted five walks.

 

Quick Hits About the Gators

·         Florida is seeking to avenge a 7-6 defeat in 10 innings to North Florida on Feb. 26.

·         Six of the Gators’ nine wins this season have been of the come-from-behind variety.

·         UF is concluding a season-high nine-game homestand at McKethan Stadium, a stretch in which they are 3-5 (.375).

·         Simpson (0-1, 4.96) will be making his fifth start of the season, first in a mid-week contest.

·         Simpson started UF’s second game during the first four weekend series and has totaled 15 strikeouts and issued five walks in 16.1 innings.

·         Freshman CF Harrison Bader (Bronxville, N.Y.) (.293, 15 R, 5 RBI) enters the week on a five-game hitting streak, tied for the longest on the team with senior 1B Vickash Ramjit (Miami, Fla.) (.295, 15 RBI, 10 R).

·         Bader batted .412 (7-for-17) in four outings last week and went 5-for-13 (.385) in the Gators’ weekend series against Kentucky, highlighted by a 3-for-4, two-RBI effort on Saturday.

·         Sophomore 2B Josh Tobias (Greensboro, N.C.) (.216) belted the first two homers of his career versus UK, a solo shot to begin the scoring in the third inning on Friday and then he led off the second inning of game two with a round-tripper. He went a team-leading 4-for-10 (.400) during the series.

·         Sophomore OF Connor Mitchell (Tampa, Fla.) started the final two meetings with the Wildcats in right field and was 3-for-8 (.375) with two runs, two walks, a stolen base and the game-winning RBI on Friday with an infield single.

·         Sophomore Casey Turgeon (Palm Harbor, Fla.) (.301) started at shortstop all three games over the weekend and leads the squad in runs (17), while being tied for the top spot in RBI (15), walks (10) and homers (3).

·         Sophomore RHP Johnny Magliozzi (East Milton, Mass.) (2-0, 2.45) collected his fourth save in five chances in last Friday’s SEC opener against Kentucky with a scoreless ninth. He has registered 15 strikeouts without yielding any walks in 18.1 innings.

·         Freshman SS Richie Martin (Brandon, Fla.) is sidelined after being injured in the finale with Miami (FL) on March 3. He is riding a 10-game hitting streak in which he is 15-for-42 (.357). Martin has reached base in all 12 games he played this year and is batting .327 overall with seven runs and three stolen bases in three attempts.

·         Sophomore RHP Ryan Harris (Jupiter, Fla.) (3-1, 3.74) has made a team-high 12 relief appearances and has recorded 10 K and four BB in 21.2 innings.

·         The Gators are 5-5 (.500) when scoring first and 4-7 (.364) when their opponent scores first.

 

Series Nuggets

The Gators and Ospreys are tied at six wins apiece after North Florida posted a 7-6 victory in 10 innings on Feb. 26. Seven of the 12 contests have been decided by two runs or less. Kevin O’Sullivan is 6-4 (.600) against North Florida: 6-2 (.750) in Gainesville and 0-2 (.000) in Jacksonville.

 

Sibling Rivalry

Gator freshman INF/OF Brady Roberson (Royal Palm Beach, Fla.) (.294, three RBI) will be facing his older brother Ryan, a junior first baseman for the Ospreys who is hitting a team-best .369 with 12 RBI, eight runs and five doubles in 17 games played and 16 games started this season.

 

Last Meeting Between Gators & Ospreys

Senior Corey Bass delivered a one-out double to center field in the 10th inning that scored junior Alex Bacon with the eventual winning run as North Florida dealt Florida a 7-6 loss on Feb. 26 at McKethan Stadium. The Gators had tied the game in the ninth with a pair of runs to force extra innings. Sophomore Justin Shafer (Lake Wales, Fla.) led UF’s 13-hit offensive attack by going 3-for-5, while freshmen Christian Dicks (Jacksonville, Fla.) (2-for-4) and Roberson (1-for-4, 2 RBI) each made his starting debut. Florida overcame deficits of 3-0 (tied 3-3 in the 4th), 4-3 (tied 4-4 in 6th) and 6-4 (tied 6-6 in 9th) but wound up on the short end to the Ospreys in the first of two meetings this season between the clubs.

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