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Sophomore hurler Bryan Ball threw 5 1/3 innings and gave up just two runs off of three hits.

Wednesday February 25, 2004Baseball Uses 15 Hits to Knock Off Michigan 9-4

Gainesville, FL

Sophomore hurler Bryan Ball threw 5 1/3 innings and gave up just two runs off of three hits.

After three one-run games against Miami University last weekend, the University of Florida baseball team (7-3) quickly got ahead against the University of Michigan and didnít look back in a 9-4 victory. With sound pitching from sophomore Bryan Ball and big run innings in the first and fourth, the Gators improved to 6-1 at home this season.

Ben Harrison and C.J. Smith both hit home runs and Justin Tordi finished with a team-leading four RBI. Florida left 15 runners on base but finished with 15 hits and also drew five walks.

Gators starting pitcher Bryan Ball (2-0) got the win by going a career long 5 1/3 innings while giving up two earned runs on three hits, striking out three and walking three.

The Gators got on the board first when Jonathan Tucker led off the game on an infield pop fly that dropped in front of Michiganís third baseman for an error. Harrison then hit his third home run of the season over the scoreboard in right field. The Gators then loaded the bases without getting a hit and Tordi capitalized by driving in a pair of runs on a single to left.

Michigan then touched up Ball with a run in the third. The Wolverines loaded the bases with no outs. An infield error allowed Brad Roblin to come home with Michiganís first run. Ball kept his cool and proceeded to strike out the next two batters looking before coaxing A.J. Scheidt to ground out to first base to end the inning.

The Gators responded in the form of a Smith solo home run to right field to lead off the bottom of the third. The long ball gave UF a 5-1 advantage and Michigan would get no closer.

Florida added three more runs in the fourth after freshman Brian Leclerc hit his first college triple and was brought home by a Harrison single to shallow right. After a walk to Jeff Corsaletti and a single by Smith, Tordi got his third RBI of the night with a bunt single that scored Harrison. Catcher Brian Jeroloman followed with a RBI sacrifice fly that brought in Corsaletti.

The Wolverines did mount a comeback after Ball was removed in the sixth. Michigan hit four straight singles off of reliever Mike Pete that resulted in three Michigan runs. The Gators extinguished the rally as Connor Falkenbach retired Nick Rudden to end the inning.

Tordi got his fourth RBI of the night in the bottom of the seventh by hitting a two out single to left which scored Harrison from third base. Harrison led off the inning with a single up the middle and moved to third base on a pinch hit single by Daniel Brooks.

Falkenbach earned his first save after entering the game in the sixth and pitched 3 1/3 innings without giving up a run and allowing three hits while striking out two. The three Gator pitchers didnít allow an extra base hit in the game as Michigan finished with 10 hits.

Harrison would finish 3-for-6 with three runs scored and three RBI, while Smith and Corsaletti also scored twice.

Michigan starting pitcher Drew Taylor who went 9-1 a year ago took the loss as he did not make it out of the second inning. He pitched one inning and gave up four hits and four runs (one earned) with a walk and two strikeouts.

 

NOTES

  • The first inning was 40 minutes long.
  • The Florida baseball team debuted their black jerseys for the first time this season.
  • The Gators were hit by three pitches..
  • Jeff Corsalettiís nine-game hitting streak ended after going 0-for-2 with a walk and two hit by pitches.
  • Falkenbach threw 46 pitches and 40 of those were for strikes.
  • The game last 3:36, the longest game of the season.
  • Five Florida players had multi-hit games.

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