Friday April 25, 2014No. 12 Florida Downs Missouri, 7-1, Seizes SEC Lead
Freshman Peter Alonso drove in five of the Gators' seven runs in the series opener with Missouri.
Freshman right-hander Logan Shore (Coon Rapids, Minn.) carried a shutout into the eighth inning and freshman Peter Alonso (Tampa, Fla.) went 3-for-4 and had a career-high five RBI as No. 12 Florida (28-15/13-6 SEC) claimed its series opener with a 7-1 victory over Missouri (19-22/6-13 SEC) on Friday night at McKethan Stadium. With No. 8 South Carolina’s 9-3 win over No. 18 Alabama, the Gators now occupy first place in the league standings by one game over the Crimson Tide.
Shore (5-2) permitted five singles during his outing, with five strikeouts, one run and zero walks. The righty improved to 5-1 in league play. Alonso was a homer shy of the cycle after a two-run single in the second, an RBI triple in the sixth and a two-run double in the eighth.
Alonso provided the Orange and Blue with a 2-0 lead in the second inning with a single off of Tiger junior Brett Graves (3-3). Junior Taylor Gushue (Boca Raton, Fla.) (2-for-3, two runs) had led off with a single through the left side and went to third when senior second baseman Shane Segovia misplayed a grounder by junior Braden Mattson (San Antonio, Texas). After junior Zack Powers (Seffner, Fla.) grounded out, moving Mattson to second, Alonso broke the ice with a base-hit up the middle. During Powers’ at bat, the Tigers believed that they had turned a triple play but the umpires ruled that ball was trapped and left the Gators with two runners in scoring position and one down.
Florida expanded its advantage to 4-0 in the third on an RBI single by sophomore Harrison Bader (Bronxville, N.Y.) and a sacrifice fly by Mattson. Junior Casey Turgeon (Palm Harbor, Fla.) began the frame with a double into left center and was sacrificed over by sophomore Richie Martin (Brandon, Fla.). Bader collected his eighth RBI over the past five games with a knock into center field, stole second and took third on Gushue’s second single of the night. Soon after, Mattson’s fly ball to right field brought home Bader.
Alonso roped a two-triple off the wall in left center in the sixth inning to plate Powers with UF’s fifth run.
After yielding a one-out single to redshirt senior Eric Anderson (2-for-4) in the eighth, Shore was replaced by freshman Kirby Snead (Alachua, Fla.). A base-hit by freshman Jake Ring (2-for-4) left the Tigers with runners on the corners and junior Bobby Poyner (Wellington, Fla.) came in with a 2-1 count on junior Logan Pearson and uncorked a wild pitch that scored Anderson. Poyner caught Pearson looking on strikes and had senior Dylan Kelly ground out to complete the stanza.
In the bottom of the inning, the Gators answered with two more runs on a two-run double by Alonso to finalize the margin at 7-1.
Head coach Kevin O’Sullivan
On tonight’s game:
“We beat a really good pitcher tonight. I don’t know how high in the draft he’s going to go, but he’s for sure going in the first couple of rounds anyways. It thought we had much better at bats; it’s amazing what 48 hours will do for you. We squared up some balls tonight. Obviously, the error there in the second inning by the second baseman helped us, but overall our at bats were better.
Logan (Shore) was as good as he’s been in a long time. We had no walks as a staff and made one error so it was a much better game than Tuesday or Wednesday. The bottom line is that this team focuses and bears down. It’s got a chance to beat anybody. But, unfortunately, in this game you can also lose to anybody as well. I’m really pleased at how we bounced back; it was a really good team win and, like I said, I was really pleased with the at bats against a really quality pitcher.”
Junior catcher Taylor Gushue
On Logan Shore’s pitching performance:
“He threw a lot of great change-ups tonight. They weren’t good, they were great. All of his pitches were working really well tonight. His pen before the game tonight was outstanding so I had a good feeling going into the game. Me, Sully (Coach O’Sullivan), and Logan were working all as one unit together tonight and it really showed.
Freshman designated hitter Peter Alonso
On his offensive production tonight:
“I was seeing the ball well tonight. I just wanted to come back from Tuesday and Wednesday. I wanted to make things happen. I wanted to drive my guys in instead of leaving them on base.”
On Logan Shore’s pitching performance:
“He did a magnificent job hitting his spots and did a really good job of attacking all the hitters. He’s fearless on the mound and doesn’t care who he’s going against. He does a really good job of competing and doing the best he can to give us the best chance he can to win.”
· Florida captured its sixth-straight SEC game and ended a two-game losing streak.
· All five of Logan Shore’s victories this season have come in SEC play. He has worked at least five innings in all 10 of his career starts.
· Shore tallied his sixth quality start of the year for the Gators.
· Peter Alonso notched his third multiple-RBI outing of the season and established a career high with five RBI.
· Alonso collected six total bases on the night, matching a season-high by a Gator.
· Buddy Reed’s team-leading 12th sacrifice bunt of the season is one shy of the single-season school record.
· Taylor Gushue was 2-for-3 and leads the Gators with 15 multiple-hit games.
· Braden Mattson had his fourth sacrifice fly of the year in the third inning.
· Zack Powers raised his hitting streak to seven games with a two-out single into right field in the sixth.
· Brett Morales made his first appearance since March 22 at Texas A&M and recorded the final two outs of the game.
· Casey Turgeon connected on his eighth double of the year with a shot to left center in the third inning.
· Harrison Bader drove in his eighth RBI in five games.
· Gushue recorded his first stolen base of the year during Powers’ at-bat in the third inning.
The Gators and Tigers will meet in game two of the series on Saturday at 12 p.m. The game can be heard on the Gator IMG Sports Network with Jeff Cardozo and Mick Hubert, will be carried on FOX Sports Florida (Cox Communications Channel 1070 HD and Channel 70 in Gainesville) with Larry Conley and Dave Neal and streamed on ESPN3,
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