April 18, 2004
CORAL GABLES, Fla. – No. 14 Florida State (26-13, 6-3 ACC) defeated No. 4 Miami (28-8) by a final score of 10-3 to avoid a sweep as 3,382 looked on at Mark Light Field on Sunday afternoon. Rhett James (4-1) pitched a career-long 6.2 innings with seven strikeouts and two walks. James, who was making his first start in the weekend rotation, allowed three runs on seven hits. Junior catcher Aaron Cheesman led the Seminoles offensively, going 3-for-4 with three RBI including a two-run home run in the first inning. Kevin Lynch and Tyler Chambliss combined to shut out the Hurricanes over the final 2.1 innings allowing just one hit.
“It was a big win for us,” said head coach Mike Martin. “I was very proud of this group of Seminoles. They played very well and you have to beat a team like Miami. They are the best team we’ve played so far this season.”
Cheesman put the Seminoles up early with a two-run homer to left in the first inning. Stephen Drew was aboard after drawing a walk for Cheesman’s second home run of the season.
FSU added another run in the second inning to go up 3-0 when Matt Sauls belted his first homer of the year, a solo shot to left.
The Hurricanes got two runs back in the bottom half of the second. Jim Burt hit a solo home run to left and Roger Tomas recorded an RBI-double to the gap in left center.
In the top of the third, Florida State pushed the lead to 5-2. Shane Robinson led off with a single and came around to score on Drew’s double down the right field line. Drew later scored on Cheesman’s single up the middle.
Florida State’s lead grew to 8-2 with three runs in the top of the sixth. Sauls drew a leadoff walk and stole second before scoring when Brandon Manasa’s grounder went through the legs of first baseman Jim Burt. Manasa moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Dennis Anderson while Shane Robinson was hit by pitch and Cheesman was walked to load the bases. Eddy Martinez-Esteve’s sacrifice fly to center scored Manasa and with the bases loaded again, Gibbs Chapman was hit by a pitch to bring home Robinson.
FSU and UM each scored a run in the seventh to make it 9-3. Robinson knocked in a run with a double in the top half of the inning and Miami’s Brian Barton singled home Adam Ricks in the bottom half.
The Seminoles final run came in the top of the ninth as Drew was walked with two outs and the bases loaded to plate Bryan Zech to make final score 10-3.
The Seminoles host the Florida Gators on Wednesday, April 21st at Dick Howser Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. and will be carried live by Sunshine Network.