March 10, 2002
Tallahassee, Fla. — Senior outfielder Richie Smith had a career day Sunday afternoon as he led No. 1 Florida State (20-4) to a 15-3 victory over Pittsburgh (10-3-1) in front of 2,266 fans at Dick Howser Stadium. Smith recorded a career-high seven RBI with a grand slam in the third inning and a three-run homer in the seventh inning. The Seminoles extended their winning streak to eight games and have now won 14 of their last 15 contests.
FSU took a 1-0 lead after one inning of play when Smith scored on a sacrifice fly by Tony Richie.
Just as they did Saturday, the Seminoles used an eight-run inning to take control of the game. With two outs, Nick Rogers and Ryan Barthelemy started the rally with back-to-back doubles. Richie then plated Barthelemy with an RBI-single. After a walk to Blair McCaleb, Kevin Richmond picked up an RBI with a base hit to left. Bryan Zech’s single scored McCaleb and Scott Toole followed with a walk to load the bases. Smith capped the scoring in the eight-run third with a grand slam over the right field fence.
Down 9-0, Pittsburgh got two back in the fourth when Rolando Bello hit a two-run homer to right.
Barthelemy knocked in his second run of the game in the fifth inning and McCaleb added a sacrifice fly to extend the lead back to nine runs at 11-2.
Rogers pushed the lead to 10 with an RBI-single to center in the bottom of the sixth.
The Panthers scored one more in the top of the seventh and FSU scored three in the bottom half of the seventh for the final margin of 15-3.
Blair Varnes (3-2) earned the win for Florida State, giving up two runs on four hits in six innings of work. Varnes struck out a season-high seven and walked just one.
Pitt starter Don Rhoten (2-1) took the loss after surrendering eight runs on six hits in 2.2 innings. Rhoten walked four and struck out one.
Rogers (3-for-4), Barthelemy (2-for-6) and Richie (2-for-3) joined Smith in the multi-hit category for the Tribe.
Florida State will return to action on Tuesday for a two-game series with Appalachian State. The game time is set for 6:00 p.m. at Dick Howser Stadium. The two teams will face each other again Wednesday at 3:30 p.m.