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Thursday March 7, 2002Austin Peay Hands Baseball 12-8 Defeat

Gainesville, FL

Austin Peay took advantage of a 3.1-inning pitching performance from reliever Casey Calloway, a two home run day from A.J. Ellis and four errors to defeat No. 6 Florida 12-8 in baseball Thursday at McKethan Stadium. The loss drops Florida to 11-3 on the season while Austin Peay improves to 6-3 overall.

Austin Peay trailed 8-7 upon heading into the seventh inning but used three Gator errors to take a 10-8 lead. Joe Peer reached base on an error to lead off the inning, stole second and advanced to third on a wild pitch. After two outs (strikeout, ground out), A.J. Ellis reached base on a second ground ball error which scored Peer. Ellis then scored on Frank Kunich’s RBI double to right center field. After stealing third, Kunich scored on UF’s third error of the inning. The Governors scored two more runs in the eighth Chris Hyde’s two-RBI double. Austin Peay finished the game with 10 hits.

Calloway (1-0) replaced Austin Peay starter Mike Weel in the sixth inning. He struck out four batters and held the Gators hitless over the final 3.1 innings for the win. Weel pitched 5.2 innings and allowed 13 hits, eight runs (seven ER) and struck out five in 129 pitches.

"They were an aggressive offensive club and they did an outstanding job of capitalizing on key situations," Florida head coach Pat McMahon said. "We need to pitch better and complete plays on defense. We need to come back out and battle tomorrow."

Sophomore Ben Harrison gave Florida its 8-7 lead when he blasted a three-run home run to left center field in the fifth inning. The shot was his third of the season.

The Gators trailed after Austin Peay scored five runs in the top of the fifth to go up 7-5. Jared Walker scored on a wild pitch, Ben Fuller’s triple drove on two runs and Ellis hit a two-run homer for APSU’s five runs.

The Gators built a 5-2 lead after scoring two runs in the fourth on Aaron Davidson’s sacrifice fly and Mark Kiger’s solo home run.

Florida reliever Dave Bartelt (1-1) took the loss after allowing four runs (one ER) and striking out three in 2.2 innings of work. UF starter Jimmy Ramshaw went 4.0 innings, allowing five hits and six runs.

Ellis led Austin Peay with a two home run evening, his first two homers of the season. He finished 2-5 with three runs and four RBI. Three other Governors added two hits apiece including Peer (2-4, four runs scored), Ben Fuller (2-4, two RBI) and Kunch (2-5).

Kiger led Florida at the plate with three hits. Matt Goss, Aaron Sobieraj and David Klebonis each contributed two hits apiece.

The two teams will play Friday at 6:30 p.m. Saturday’s third game begins at 4 p.m. at McKethan Stadium.

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