June 1, 2002
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The South Florida Bulls advanced to championship Sunday of the NCAA Division I Baseball Tallahassee Regional with a 7-2 win over UCF in Game 5, Saturday evening at Dick Howser Stadium. USF, now 35-28, will face top-seeded Florida State (58-12) at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday. The Bulls will have to defeat the Seminoles twice in order to advance to Super Regional action as FSU has gone undefeated in this weekend’s regional play. UCF concluded the season 41-22.
South Florida struck early with two runs on two outs in the bottom of the second inning. Bryan Hierlmeier got things started with an infield hit with one out and went to second on a ground out by Allen Shirley. Mike Cunningham’s base hit to center scored Hierlmeier and Cunningham advanced to second on an error on the play. Leadoff hitter Mike Macaluso kept things going with a base hit to left, scoring Cunningham.
The Bulls picked up two more runs in their half of the third. Myron Leslie walked to start the bottom of the third inning. After stealing second, he went to third on a ground out by Jeff Baisley. Leslie was brought home by Devin Ivany’s base hit to short left. Ivany advanced to second on a wild pitch and went to third on a single by Barclay. With runners on the corners, Hierlmeier recorded his second hit of the game with a single down the middle to score Ivany.
South Florida starting pitcher Ryan Gloger kept the UCF hitters in check, holding the Golden Knights hitless until the fourth inning. Rich Wallace recorded the Golden Knights’ first hit of the game with a shot to centerfield with two out, but Clay Timpner grounded out to second to end the inning.
USF’s Chris Cuccia’s RBI double to left field in the bottom of the fifth increased the Bulls’ lead to five as Cunningham, who had led off the inning with a walk, scored his second run of the game.
Wallace doubled to center in the top of the seventh inning, accounting for both UCF hits in the game. He was again left stranded.
It was like d?j? vu in the bottom of the seventh inning. Like he did in the third inning, Leslie led off the inning with a walk and went to third on a single by Baisley, who advanced to second on the throw. Ivany recorded his second and third RBIs of the game with a single to right center.
In the UCF ninth, the Golden Knights rallied for two runs off of two hits. The first three batters reached base. Mike Myers led off with a walk and after stealing both second and third was driven in by Dee Brown’s single. Wallace belted a double, for his third hit of the game, to score Brown.
Gloger, who struck out four and walked two, got the complete game victory and improved to 6-4. With the loss, UCF’s Lincoln Mincks finished the season 7-6.