March 15, 2017 - by
Noles Fall at No. 22 FGCU

FORT MYERS, Fla. – Florida State lost consecutive games for the first time this season after Wednesday’s 5-2 loss at No. 22 Florida Gulf Coast. Sophomore Cal Raleigh had a pair of RBI’s in the first inning, but the Seminoles (13-5) left 15 runners on base, all in the first seven innings, while FGCU (15-3) scored three in the first inning and never relinquished the lead. The game was played in front of 3,397 fans at JetBlue Park, the spring training home of the Boston Red Sox.

“A couple of plays early gave them momentum, and we’ve got to cut that out,” head coach Mike Martin said. “We’ve got some things we need to work on as a team.”

FSU struck first with a pair of two-out runs in the first inning. After Taylor Walls and Dylan Busby struck out, Rhett Aplin and Quincy Nieporte drew the first of FSU’s nine walks in the game. Both came around to score on Raleigh’s single.

In the bottom of the inning, FSU starter Ed Voyles (1-1) allowed four of the five batters he faced to reach base in earning the loss. The first two batters singled, and both scored on Eli Lovell’s two-run double off the Green Monster in left field. After Will Zirzow replaced Voyles, Lovell scored on a wild pitch that turned out to be the game-winner.

The Seminoles left at least one runner on in each of the first seven innings. In the first, fourth, and seventh innings, FSU left the bases loaded. After not registering a walk in Tuesday night’s 1-0 loss at Florida, the Noles registered nine against the Eagles, and were hit by three pitches, but only Aplin and Nieporte came around to score.

FSU’s best chance to make noise came in the seventh inning, when freshmen Tyler Daughtry (walk) and Nick Derr (hit by pitch) reached to open the frame, and advanced on a successful sacrifice bunt by J.C. Flowers. Sensing a need to score, Martin pinch hit for starting second baseman Matt Henderson, bringing in Jackson Lueck, who had missed each of the past six games due to shin splints.

Noles Fall at No. 22 FGCU

After Lueck walked on a full count, he was replaced on the base paths with Hank Truluck. Walls and Busby struck out to end the inning, and FSU did not have another baserunner.

The Eagles added runs in the third inning on a groundout from Spencer Levine, and in the eighth on a sacrifice fly from Richie Garcia. Starting pitcher Mario Leon allowed four hits in four innings, and reliever Kenton Hering (3-1) recorded the final two outs of the seventh and pitched a perfect eighth inning. Sterling Koerner picked up his fifth save with a perfect ninth.

The Seminoles next play a three-game series at Virginia Tech beginning Friday at 5:30. Friday and Saturday’s games will only be available on radio (106.1 FM in Tallahassee), and Sunday’s game will stream live on the ACC Network Extra.

Postgame Notes:

– Wednesday was FSU’s first visit to Florida Gulf Coast. FGCU has won three straight games in the series, but FSU leads the all-time series 7-4.

– The 15 runners FSU left on base are the most this season, and the most since leaving 16 in a 12-4 win at USF last season.

For more information on Florida State baseball, check for the latest news and scheduling information, or keep up with the team on social media through Twitter (@FSUBaseball), Facebook (/FSUBaseball), and Instagram (@NoleBaseball).

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