DICK HOWSER STADIUM
|FLORIDA STATE UNIVERSITY|
#1 Florida State defeated the #15 Florida on Friday night in the first game of a two-game series at Dick Howser Stadium. The combined efforts of Matt Lynch, Rhett James, and Daniel Hodges limited the hard-hitting Gators to just four runs on elevens hits while four Seminole batters had multiple-hit games.
Lynch (5-0) earned the win, going 7.1 innings while striking out four batters, and Hodges picked up his fourth save of the season, throwing a perfect ninth inning. James got the Noles out of a jam in eighth inning, striking out the two batters he faced. With the win, Lynch moved up to sixth place in all-time wins in ACC history, while Hodges moved into sixth place on the all-time save list in the ACC.
FSU struck first in the second inning when Chris Hart led off with a single to right, and moved to second on a single by Blake Balkcom. Matt Sauls then singled to left to score Hart, while Balkcom came home on a throwing error by the UF centerfielder, Jake Riordon.
The lead was short-lived though, as the Gators tied it up in the next inning. Riordon atoned for his error by leading off with a double down the left field line before thirdbaseman Brett Dowdy singled to right. Riordon then scored and Dowdy moved to third on a bunt-single by secondbaseman Jonathan Tucker. A single by rightfielder Ben Harrison through the left side tied it up at 2-2.
The Noles answered right back in the bottom of the inning when Tony McQuade led off with a double to left-center, moved to third on a balk, and scored on Jerrod Brown's double down the leftfield line. Eddy Martinez-Esteve then hit the third double of the inning to score Brown to give Florida State a 4-2 lead.
FSU added to their lead in the bottom of the sixth when Hart doubled down the leftfield line, moved to third on a groundout by Martinez-Esteve, and scored on a sacrifice fly by Balkcom. That run would prove crucial as the Gators picked up two in the next fram when Dowdy singled to left, and scored on a Harrison double to left, past Martinez-Esteve. Harrison then came home on a double by firstbaseman C.J. Smith to pull Florida to within one run.
FSU improved to 18-1 on the year and has now won fifteen games in a row while Florida fell to 12-2. The same two teams will play on Saturday at 2:00 with Trent Peterson (3-0 1.42 ERA) on the mound for the Noles.
Section B Online Player of the Game: Matt Lynch (7.1, 11 H, 4 R, 0 BB, 4 K)