Monday April 15, 2013UF Baseball's Harrison Bader Named SEC Freshman of the Week For First Time
Florida outfielder Harrison Bader (Bronxville, N.Y.) was chosen as the Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Week on Monday for the first time in his career after batting .462 (6-for-13) in the Gators’ 4-0 stretch that included a win at No. 7 Florida State and a sweep of No. 8 South Carolina over the weekend. He became the first recipient from UF since current sophomore Casey Turgeon (Palm Harbor, Fla.) was recognized on May 7, 2012.
Bader hit .444 (4-for-9) in the Gators’ three victories over the Gamecocks, with a team-leading four RBI and was 2-for-2 on the basepaths. It marked only the fourth time in school history that Florida swept South Carolina in a regular-season series and marked the first time since 2009.
Playing left field, Bader went 1-for-3 with two runs and a pair of RBI in Saturday’s finale, with a run-scoring single in the second inning that had given UF a 2-1 lead and also lofted his first career sacrifice fly during the 10-run, sixth-inning outburst that resulted in a 14-5 win. On Friday night, Bader delivered a two-run, two-out single in the eighth inning that turned a 3-2 deficit into a 4-3 triumph.
In his first visit to Tallahassee last Tuesday, Bader went 2-for-4 and scored three runs as the Gators downed the Seminoles, 4-3. With the score tied, the rookie led off the ninth inning by reaching second base on an error, took third on a failed pickoff attempt and scored the go-ahead run on a sacrifice fly by sophomore Josh Tobias (Greensboro, N.C.). Bader also robbed Florida State of a potential home run at the left-field wall to end the fifth when the contest was deadlocked at 2-2.
Bader has seen action in all 37 of the Gators’ games this season and has made 35 starts (21 in center field, 14 in left field). He currently ranks third on the club with a .285 batting average, leads the squad with eight stolen bases in 13 attempts and has scored 24 runs to rate third on the Orange and Blue.
Florida (19-18/8-7 SEC) travels to Fort Myers on Tuesday to meet FGCU (20-12/6-6 A-Sun) at 6:30 p.m. at Hammond Stadium. Jeff Cardozo and Adam Schick will call the action on the Gator IMG Sports Network, live 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 team.