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Thursday May 17, 2001Home Run Gives Gators 9-3 SEC Tourney Win

Birmingham, Ala.

Matt Goss gave Florida a four run lead on a three-run home run and reliever Keith Ramsey threw the final 2 1/3 scoreless innings as Florida won a 9-3 decision against Tennessee Thursday in the SEC Baseball Tournament. With the win, Florida advances in the consolation bracket to face the loser of the Ole Miss-LSU contest at 4 p.m. ET/3 p.m. CT on Friday. Ole Miss (37-19-1) and LSU (38-18-1) play the 6 p.m. ET/5 p.m. CT game tonight.

Florida is now 34-24 while Tennessee drops to 41-17.

With the Gators leading 4-3 in the seventh inning, Goss launched a 2-0 pitch over the right field fence to give Florida a commanding 7-3 lead. The home run was Gossí 11th of the season. The hit came after a Jason Dill walk and a Peter Nystrom single.

Florida reliever Jay Belflower (4-3) earned the win after pitching 2.0 innings and allowing four hits and one earned run. Keith Ramsey threw the final 35 pitches and 2.1 innings for his ninth save of the season. He allowed only hit, struck out two and recorded the final out of the seventh inning on a fly out with UF up 4-3. Gator starter Jimmy Ramshaw went 4.2 innings and was effective allowing one run and three hits but did not earn the win. A starting pitcher must pitch 5.0 innings to receive the win.

"It was good for us to comeback and play well from the start," Florida coach Andy Lopez said. "I thought offensively it was good to see us score immediately. We needed to play well. I thought we did a good job today, I always believe that if you play hard and you play well, youíre probably going to win."

Florida took an early 3-0 lead in the first inning on four hits. Floridaís Aaron Davidson doubled to left center followed by Mark Kigerís single. The two advanced on a double steal and scored on Jason Dillís double to left field. After Dill advanced to third on Peter Nystromís infield single, Matt Goss drove him home on a sacrifice fly.

UF went up 4-0 when Mark Kiger drove in Brian Rose on a single to centerfield. Rose singled, advanced to second on an error

Tennessee chipped away at the Gatorsí 4-0 lead with runs in the fifth, sixth and seventh innings. The Vols made it 4-1 when Justin Parker led off the fifth with a walk, advanced to second and third respective on a wild pitch and Dennis Gomezí groundout and scored on Dan Wilsonís sacrifice fly.

The Vols added another run in the sixth on Jeff Christensenís leadoff home run

Tennessee made it 4-3 with a run in the seventh when Chris Burke singled, stole second and advanced to third on a throwing error then scored on Stevie Danielís groundout. That was the end of Tennesseeís scoring as Ramsey held the Vols to one hit in the last 2.1 innings.

Three Gators finished with two hits apiece- Mark Kiger, Jason Dill and Peter Nystrom. Kiger went 2-3 with two walks, two runs scored an a RBI. Chris Burke led Tennessee with a 3-4 performance.

GAME NOTES

*The win is Floridaís fourth all-time SEC Tournament victory after losing in the first round. The Gators came all the way back to win the 1988 SEC Tournament after losing their first round game.

*Florida has now won eight of hits last 12 games. UF claimed its first victory over the Volunteers this season.

*Matt Goss hit his team leading 11th home run. Eight of his previous 10 home runs came in SEC play.

*UF starter Jimmy Ramshaw went 4.2 IP, his shortest start since going 4.2 vs. Kentucky on March 31. He had gone at least 5.0 innings in his last five starts.

*Florida stole five bases and not has 135 on the season.

*Aaron Sobierajís nine-game hit streak ended today.

--UF--

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