April 16, 2010
CARY, N.C. – Sixth-ranked Florida State (27-8, 11-5 ACC) extended its road win streak in the ACC to five games with a 16-3 victory over Duke (20-15, 5-11 ACC) Friday evening at the USA Baseball Training Complex in Cary, N.C. The win marked the sixth of the season for the Seminoles in the Carolinas and 32nd in the last 35 games against the Blue Devils.
“Well, I was very pleased with (Sean) Gilmartin,” said head coach Mike Martin. “I thought he had a good outing. I thought we had some very good at-bats and it was a good one to get. We know that there is a lot of baseball left. We can’t get too excited and we have to be ready to go tomorrow.”
The Seminoles pounded out a season-high 19 hits on Friday night as all nine starters registered at least one hit. Tyler Holt paced the Seminole offense with three hits, while four other Nole hitters each recorded two hits apiece.
Holt finished the night 3-for-4 as all three hits went for extra bases with a double and two home runs. He tied a career-high scoring four times in FSU’s game one victory over Duke.
“There is no question that he sort of set the tone,” said Martin on the performance of Holt tonight. “He hit the ball out of the ball park in his first at-bat after getting two strikes. Then Cardullo gets two strikes and he gets a base hit. It happened two more straight times and it was just a big lift for us to get started off that way.”
Holt connected on back-to-back home runs in his first two at-bats of the evening to push his home run total to a team leading nine on the year. It marked his first multi-home run game of the season and third of his career.
“I guess you can say I was seeing the ball well tonight,” said Holt. “I got two strikes on me both times and it so happened that the wind was blowing out both times. He threw some fastballs up, I was able to stay through it and hit them out of the ball park.”
Stephen Cardullo went 2-for-4 with a double and a triple as he scored twice and drove in two. Mike McGee finished the night 2-for-5 with a run scored and an RBI. James Ramsey and Stuart Tapley each went 2-for-3 as both Seminoles reached base on their first three plate appearances Friday night.
The Garnet and Gold put the game away early scoring 10 of their 16 runs in the first three innings. The 10 runs were plenty for FSU starting pitcher Sean Gilmartin to work with as he threw a season-high 8.0 innings to move to 6-2 on the year. The sophomore southpaw gave up three runs on eight hits as he walked two and struck out six.
“There are a lot of things that go in to getting eight innings from your starter,” said Martin. “It is just a nice feeling.”
Twice Gilmartin worked out of a bases loaded, no out jam allowing just one run in each of those two innings. He faced the minimum in four of the eight innings that he worked while inducing a pair of inning ending double plays.
“I thought I did fairly well getting out of those bases loaded jams and only one run across both times, I got the ground balls and the defense did a nice job behind me to make the plays,” said Gilmartin.
Tye Buckley worked the ninth and faced the minimum as he too got Duke pinch hitter Jeff Kremer to ground into a double play to end the game.
Florida State got off to a quick start on Friday night scoring five runs off Duke starter Christopher Manno (1-2) in the top of the first. The Seminoles sent nine batters to the plate as the first six reached safely. Holt led off the game with a solo home run taking a 1-2 pitch from Manno off the scoreboard in right center. The homer was his team leading eighth of the season, while it marked the second time in Holt’s career that he has led off a game with a home run.
The Noles followed with three straight hits including an RBI single through the left side by Ramsey scoring Cardullo, who followed Holt with a double to left center. Following a walk to Jayce Boyd that loaded the bases, Tapley went opposite field dropping a bloop single to right to score McGee. Sherman Johnson drove in Ramsey for the fourth run of the inning on a sac-fly to center. A double steal led to another run and a 5-0 lead as Tapley swiped second and with the throw going down to second, Boyd broke for the plate and successfully stole home.
Holt’s at-bat in the second was a replica of the first but this time the Gainesville, Fla., native took Manno out of the park to left on a 2-2 pitch for his third career multi-home run game. The hit ended the evening for Manno, who lasted just one inning Friday night. The senior left hander was charged with six runs on six hits in suffering his second loss of the season.
FSU added one more run in the second to push its lead to 7-0 as the Seminoles strung together three consecutive two-out hits off Blue Devil reliever Ben Grisz. Ramsey and Boyd registered back-to-back singles and on a successful hit and run, Ramsey scored from second on Tapley’s base hit to left.
Duke cut into the FSU lead in the bottom of the second scoring a run on a sac-fly to center by Eric Brady. The damage could have been much worse for the Seminoles as the first three Blue Devil batters reached on three straight singles off Gilmartin. But the sophomore southpaw limited Duke to just one run on Brady’s sac-fly.
Florida State answered the call with three runs in the top of the third to make the score 10-1. With Parker Brunelle on at second and Holt at first following a single and walk, respectively, Cardullo brought them both home on a bases clearing triple to straight away center. The senior shortstop would score a batter later on an RBI groundout to short off the bat of McGee.
“Getting that early lead makes you a little more confident out there,” added Gilmartin. “It gives you the advantage as a pitcher to go ahead and throw strikes.”
“To score 10 runs in the first three innings was huge,” added Holt. “It takes a lot of pressure off our starting pitcher, our relief pitchers and even the guys at the plate, so we are not pressing. It feels good for this team and hopefully we can keep it going for the rest of the weekend.”
Duke’s Will Currier led off the bottom of the fourth with a solo shot to left to cut the Seminole lead to 10-2. The home run for Currier was his eighth of the season and just the third allowed by Gilmartin this year.
The Blue Devils once again loaded the bases off Gilmartin in the sixth and came away with only one run. Will Piwnica-Worms drew a four pitch walk with the bases loaded to account for the only Duke run of the inning. After the walk, Gilmartin settled down getting Marcus Stroman swinging on strikes and Dennis O’Grady to ground into an inning ending double play.
FSU pushed its lead to 11-3 in the eighth as Ramsey drove in Holt on a sac-fly to center. Holt led off the inning with his third hit of the evening, a double to left. After a walk to Cardullo, both runners advanced 90 feet on a successful double steal. Ramsey would bring home Holt two batters later.
The Seminoles added five more runs in the ninth to account for the winning margin. Devon Travis connected on a one-out triple and scored a batter later on a double to right by Johnson. Rafael Lopez registered a pinch hit single to left center to put runners at the corners. The Noles then received three straight two-out RBI hits from Justin Gonzalez, Stephen McGee and Ohmed Danesh.
The Seminoles return to the diamond for game two of the series against the Blue Devils on Saturday, April 17 at 2:00 p.m. Fans can listen in locally on 100.7 FM and on the web at Seminoles.com.