March 25, 2009
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida State (13-8) needed runs in just two innings Wednesday night to take an 11-9 victory over Florida Gulf Coast (13-10) completing the two-game, mid-week series sweep of the Eagles on Mike Martin Field inside Dick Howser Stadium. The 22nd-ranked Seminoles rallied twice on Wednesday night scoring eight runs in the fifth and three in the eighth to win their third straight contest.
Three Seminoles registered multiple hits in the win including sophomore Tyler Holt who went 2-for-4 and now has 13 multiple hit games through the first 21 contests. Stephen Cardullo and Jack Posey each left the yard for the Seminoles in game two. Cardullo finished the evening with two hits, while tying a career-high with three RBI. Posey registered his third three-RBI game of the season and fourth of his career in Wednesday night’s victory.
Florida State once again used a late inning rally to secure their fourth win in the last five games. Down by one entering the eighth, the Seminoles got the first two batters on base with singles by Mike McGee and Cardullo. Pinch hitter Ruairi O’Connor recorded a successful sacrifice down the first base line, but Eagle reliever Chris Sale (2-3) threw the ball in the dirt allowing McGee to score from third to tie the game at 9-9. The Seminoles then registered back-to-back sacrifice flies by Rafael Lopez and Posey to retake the lead at 11-9.
“Ruairi did a great job of getting down a sacrifice bunt in the eighth,” said Cardullo. “The next two guys did a good job of hitting sacrifice flies to get the runs in. Taking two out of three from Clemson was definitely a confidence booster for us and then to come out and beat (Florida) Gulf Coast in two is just huge.”
Jimmy Marshall came out to pitch the ninth and picked up his fifth save of the season as he got the Eagles in order. After recording a fly out to McGee in left for the first out of the inning, the senior right hander took care of the rest getting Zach Maxfield swinging on strikes and Josh Chester on a called third strike for the final out of the ball game.
“That was a win that you think you got control of the game with a great inning in which we had some tremendous at-bats to get a five-run lead,” said head coach Mike Martin. “Before you know it, you’re one run down. We did a very good job of scoring three in the eighth to come away with a hard fought victory over a very good Florida Gulf Coast team.”
Hunter Scantling recorded his first collegiate win working 1.2 scoreless innings. The freshman from Jacksonville, Fla., faced the minimum in his second straight outing as he did not allow a hit while striking out one.
“My goal tonight was to keep the game close and that was what I did,” said Scantling. “I felt great about my outing tonight. Going out there now, I’m getting more comfortable after every outing.”
Florida Gulf Coast jumped out in front early with a run in the top of the first. After setting down the first two batters to start the game, FSU starter Austin Wood issued back-to-back walks before giving up an RBI single to right off the bat of designated hitter Zach Maxfield.
The Eagles added another run in the third taking advantage of a Seminole fielding error to increase their lead to 2-0. As a result of an error at first by Posey, Tim Roberson reached on a fielder’s choice and scored his second run of the game on a sacrifice fly to left by Chester.
Robert Greene led off the top of the fourth with a home run to left to give the Eagles a 3-0 lead. The sophomore catcher took Wood high off the scoreboard for his sixth home run of the season.
Wood’s night would come to a close one batter later after issuing a walk to Bobbie Barrie for his fifth free pass of the game. The Seminole freshman finished the evening allowing three runs, two earned, on three hits, while striking out one in the no decision.
Geoff Parker came on in relief of Wood in the fourth and got a fly out and consecutive ground outs to second to keep FGCU’s lead at 3-0.
After managing just one hit through the first four innings, the Seminoles finally found their groove in the fifth scoring eight runs on five hits. Florida State sent 11 batters to the plate in the inning scoring all eight runs on two outs as the Eagles sent five pitchers to the mound.
Posey started the scoring barrage with a two-run shot to left center scoring Lopez who drew a walk. The Seminoles preceded to the load the bases on back-to-back singles by Holt and Tommy Oravetz and a walk to Stuart Tapley. Stidham drove in the game tying run drawing a bases loaded walk.
McGee gave the Seminoles their first lead of the game ripping a double down the left field line plating Oravetz and Tapley. One batter later Cardullo cleared the bases with one swing of the bat clubbing a three-run shot off the scoreboard to give Florida State an 8-3 advantage.
Florida Gulf Coast came right back with two runs in the sixth on Greene’s second home run of the game. Greene took Parker out of the park to left to cut the deficit to 8-5. With the blast, Greene became just the second opposing batter to hit two home runs in a single game off the Florida State pitching staff this year. Joseph Sanders of Auburn was the first to accomplish the feat back on February 26 in an 8-7 Seminole victory.
The Eagles recaptured the lead in the seventh scoring four runs off Mark Peterson to take a 9-8 lead. With runners at first and second, Maxfield recorded his second RBI of the game lacing a base hit back up the middle scoring Roberson, who led off the inning with a single to right. The run was the third scored by Roberson on Wednesday night. After a sacrifice bunt by Chester moved the runners 90 feet, Brad Roberts hit his fourth home run of the season, a three-run shot to left on a 2-1 offering from Peterson.
Florida State hits the road this weekend for the start of an eight game road trip which will cover 13 days. The first stop for the Seminoles is in College Park as Florida State takes on Maryland in a three-game series beginning Friday, March 27 at 7:00 p.m. Fans can listen to the action on 1270 the Team, while live stats will also be available via gametracker on www.seminoles.com.