March 28, 2003
Tallahassee, Fla. – Junior Tony Richie went 2-for-4 with a home run and freshman Eddy Martinez recorded a career-high four hits as No. 3 Florida State (27-4, 5-2 ACC) defeated No. 23 North Carolina (18-8, 2-2 ACC) by a final score of 8-4 in front of 3,532 fans at Dick Howser Stadium Friday evening. With two starters out of the lineup due to injury (OF Tony McQuade and 1B Jerrod Brown), the Seminoles jumped out to an early 7-0 lead after five innings and never looked back. FSU junior left-hander Trent Peterson (5-0) earned the victory with another impressive outing, allowing two runs in 5.2 innings and striking out nine.
FSU opened the scoring with three runs in the bottom of the second inning. Bryan Zech was hit by pitch to lead off the inning and Daniel Wardell drew a walk to put runners on first and second. Matt Sauls then moved the runners up on a sacrifice bunt. Stephen Drew reached on a fielder’s choice to put runners on the corners as Zech was thrown out at the plate. Martinez-Esteve singled up the middle to score Wardell from third and Richie followed with an RBI-single into left field to plate Drew. Chris Hart’s single in the hole between short and third scored Martinez-Esteve to make the score 3-0.
The Seminoles increased their lead to 5-0 with two runs in the fourth. Martinez-Esteve singled to right and Richie followed with his fifth home run of the season, a towering shot over the fence in right center, to extend FSU’s lead.
Florida State added two more runs in fifth with the help of two Tar Heel errors. Martinez-Esteve knocked in a run with a groundout and Derrick Smith knocked in another with a base hit to right.
UNC cut the lead to 7-2 with a pair of runs in the sixth. With the bases loaded and two outs, Sammy Hewitt drew a walk from Peterson to pick up an easy RBI. Rhett James entered the game in relief of Peterson and allowed one run to score on a wild pitch before recording the final out of the inning.
FSU made it 8-2 in the seventh when Sauls doubled and scored on a Stephen Drew single.
The Tar Heels added two unearned runs in the eighth on Chris Iannetta’s two-run single.
Florida State improved to 21-0 at home this season and extended its ACC home winning streak to 30 games.
Drew went 1-for-2 on stolen base attempts and was caught stealing for the first time this season (24-for-25). He had been perfect on his last 31 stolen base attempts, dating back to 2002.
UNC’s Garry Bakker (2-2) took the loss after surrendering five runs on seven hits in 3.2 innings.
The Seminoles and Tar Heels continue the series Saturday evening at 6:00 p.m. FSU LHP Matt Lynch (6-1, 3.22 ERA) is scheduled to face LHP Daniel Moore (3-0, 4.40 ERA). The final game of the series on Sunday will begin at 12:30 p.m.