March 5, 2005
Hilo, HI – Less than 24 hours after touching down in Hawaii, the eighth-ranked FSU baseball team was back on the field looking to tie a season-high with their eighth straight win. Behind a solid outing by sophomore Michael Hyde (4-1) and a season-high four sac flies, the Seminoles improved to 16-1 on the year with a 7-2 win over Hawaii-Hilo (1-23) Friday night at Wong Stadium.
Hyde became FSU’s first four-game winner as he went 5 2/3 while allowing eight hits, no walks, two runs, neither of which was earned. His eight hits were a season high but he did not issue a walk for the first time in his career. For the first time all season the Seminole staff did not issue a walk and they have now walked just three batters in the last three games.
The Seminole bullpen was phenomenal once again facing just one batter over the minimum and that was due to an error. Kevin Lynch pitched 2 1/3 innings and did not allow a hit, run or walk while striking out four. Stephen Ochs needed just 15 pitches as he pitched a perfect ninth.
Ryne Malone and Bryan Henry each had multi-RBI games while Aaron Cheesman, Jack Rye and Josh Spivey each had an RBI. Cheesman and Spivey had a sac fly and Malone had two. Rye had a season-high three hits and his two RBIs equaled a career best as well. Shane Robinson went 2-for-4 with three runs scored as he extended his hitting streak to 22 games.
It didn’t take Robinson long to extend that streak as he led off the game with his 11th double of the season. He then came around to score on a Gibbs Chapman groundout and a Cheesman sacrifice fly.
The Seminoles went back to work in the second when a Ryne Jernigan one-out double down the left field line moved Rye to third. Rye led off the inning with a hit, the second straight time FSU led off with a base hit, and he came home in similar fashion but this time it was Spivey with the sac fly.
In the third inning the Seminoles put up their third run. Robinson led the frame off with his second straight hit. He moved to second on a ground out and to third on a hard hit Malone ball to short that was mishandled. Rye then drove the run home on a bloop single to right.
The Vulcans recorded a hit for the third straight inning and put runners on the corners with just one away partly due to an FSU error. A single through the left side plated an unearned run to cut the FSU lead to 3-1. A ground out moved the runners to second and third but Malone snagged a liner to end the threat.
Hilo took advantage of another error to cut the lead again in the fourth. A lead-off error was followed by back-to-back outs, one sac to move the runner to second. Then a single past a diving Jernigan and Henry scored the runner from second cutting the score to 3-2.
After being shut out in the fourth, Florida State put up another run in the fifth inning to move out to a 4-2 lead. Chapman drew a one-out walk and then moved to third on a perfectly executed hit and run with Cheesman providing the base knock. Malone then scored the run on a sac fly, FSU’s third of the game.
The Seminoles third error put another lead off runner on for UHH. The miscue was the first of the season for starting second baseman Tony Thomas, Jr. ending a string of 79 consecutive chances without an error. The mistake didn’t lead to any runs though as Hyde got the next two batters swinging and then picked the runner off at first.
A single and a sacrifice bunt put a Vulcan base runner at second with one out in the bottom of the sixth. Then a hard hit ball to third took a wicked hop putting runners on the corners as UHH continued to hang around. A botched squeeze play cut down the lead runner at home for the second out. Hyde hit the next batter and that brought Lynch into the game. It was his team-leading 12th appearance and the 102nd relief appearance of his career, the third-most in school history. The hurler struck out the only batter he faced in the sixth and ended the Vulcan threat.
Robinson got on base for the third time in the game when he led off the seventh with a walk. Chapman’s sac bunt was booted at third putting two runners on with nobody out. Both runners moved into scoring position on a wild pitch. Vulcan starter Vinny Biggs (0-6) then walked Cheesman to load the bases. Malone recorded a season-high fourth sacrifice fly to put FSU in front 5-2. That brought up Rye who was 3-for-3 on the day and he sent a deep fly ball to left that was slicing away from the left fielder who made a great catch to take a double from the freshman. Another wild pitch put both runners back in scoring position and Henry made UHH pay with a two-run single into right field.
The Seminoles return to action Saturday, March 5 in Kona, Hawaii for game two versus Hawaii Hilo. The game is slated for a 6:00 p.m. start in Tallahassee and junior sensation Barret Browning (2-0, 0.96 ERA) is scheduled to start. Game Tracker will be available for all the contests in Hawaii along with Steve Melewski’s live radio broadcasts available on WFLA locally and on the Internet at seminoles.com.
Due to the time difference, seminoles.com will be the only place to find game stories from the Hawaii trip as soon as the action ends on top of photo galleries both on and off the field. There is only one place to follow the Seminoles as they trek through Hawaii and that is the official website of the Florida State Department of Athletics.