March 10, 2009
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Fourteenth-ranked Florida State (8-5) bounced back following two straight losses over the weekend with an 18-4 victory over High Point (4-7) in the first meeting between the two schools. The bats came alive on Tuesday evening as the Seminoles recorded double-digit runs and hits for the fourth time this year in sending the Panthers to their fourth consecutive loss.
The Seminoles broke open a 1-1 tie after the third outscoring the Panthers 17-3 over the next five innings. D’Vontrey Richardson and Ruairi O’Connor led the offensive outburst posting career-highs in hits. Richardson finished the evening 4-for-6 with two runs and an RBI, while O’Connor entered the game in the sixth and picked up three hits in three at-bats.
Freshman Sherman Johnson recorded his first collegiate hit in the eighth taking the first pitch he saw from High Point reliever Wally Scott over the fence in right center for a grand slam home run. Johnson joins Rafael Lopez as the only Seminoles with a grand slam in 2009. Overall, 12 Seminoles registered at least one hit on Tuesday night.
Jack Posey tied a career-high with three RBI in the game one victory connecting on a two-run homer in the sixth and drawing a bases loaded walk in the eighth. The sophomore right hander also pitched 1.2 scoreless innings making his fourth appearance on the mound this year. Posey took the mound with the bases loaded in the eighth and got High Point’s Spencer Atwood looking on strikes and a line out by Jeff Cowan to end the threat.
Making his first start of the season, senior Bo O’Dell worked 5.2 innings to pick up his first win of the year. The right hander from Kissimmee, Fla., allowed one run, unearned, on three hits as he walked two and struck out five. With the win, O’Dell moved to 7-2 all-time as a starter.
“He’s got a good breaking ball,” added Martin. “We went to it a lot more tonight because he was all over the zone with it. I was impressed with his fastball too. He gave us a quality outing and that is what you got to have.”
“My curveball complemented the fastball very well tonight,” said O’Dell. “I was spotting my fastball and when that happens my breaking ball becomes even more effective. It worked out good tonight. My curveball was really sharp tonight; it was a lot harder than normal.”
Florida State struck first with a run in the second to take an early 1-0 over High Point. Ohmed Danesh led off the inning reaching on a passed ball, swinging third strike. Two batters later he moved to third on a single through the left side by D’Vontrey Richardson. Richardson would take second on the play as the throw from left field went into third. With Lopez at the plate, High Point starter Mike Caldwell (2-2) unleashed a wild pitch allowing Danesh to score for the first run of the game.
A pair of Seminole errors in the third led to the first High Point run tying the game at one. With two outs, the Panthers’ Jeff Cowan reached second on a fielding error by Richardson in right and came around to score one batter later as Alfie Wheeler reached on a fielding error by Stuart Tapley. Lopez ended the inning throwing out Wheeler trying to steal second.
Florida State regained the lead in the fourth on a pair of runs to take a 3-1 advantage. Stephen Cardullo led off the inning with a walk and moved to third on the second hit of the game by Richardson, a double to right center for his first two-bagger of the season. Both Cardullo and Richardson would score on back-to-back sacrifice flies by Lopez and Tyler Holt.
The Seminoles increased their lead with three more runs in the fifth. Florida State began the inning with three consecutive hits including consecutive RBI doubles by Danesh and pinch hitter Mike Meschke. Tapley, who reached on an infield single to start the fifth, scored on Danesh’s fifth double of the season. Two batters later, Lopez brought home Meschke on a single off the wall in right. The sophomore catcher was thrown out at second on the play trying to stretch the hit into a double.
FSU added to its lead with three more runs in the sixth to take a 9-1 lead. Tommy Oravetz led off the inning with a triple to right and scored on a two-run blast by pinch hitter Jack Posey. Posey took a 3-2 offering from Panther relief pitcher Masaki Muroya off the scoreboard in left for his first home run of the season and third of his career. Tapley went yard two batters later connecting on a solo shot to deep center. The blast was his team leading third of the season and 11th of his career.
The Seminoles pushed the score to 10-1 as Holt doubled and scored in the seventh. The sophomore center fielder started the inning with a double to right and scored on a wild pitch with two outs.
High Point made things interesting in the top of the eighth pushing across three runs off FSU reliever Mike McGee cutting the deficit to 10-4. But Posey came on with the bases loaded and got the final two outs of the inning to keep the Seminole lead at six.
McGee went 1.2 innings in relief allowing three runs on three hits. He walked four and struck out one on 44 pitches.
FSU sent 13 batters to the plate in the eighth scoring eight runs on six hits to break the game wide open.
Florida State and High Point will square-off in game two on Wednesday, March 11 at 6:00 p.m. The game will air live over the internet on ACC Select. Fans can listen to the action on 1270 the Team. Live stats will also be available via gametracker on www.seminoles.com.