The Gator baseball team tied up its weekend series with Duke. On Friday Duke beat Florida but the Gators came back on Saturday with a 4-2 victory to even the series at 1-1.
Starting on the mound for the Gators was freshman right-hander, Tucker Simpson, making his collegiate debut. In four innings, Simpson gave up two earned runs, two walks, and struck out three. He didn’t give up a hit until the fourth inning.
Florida struck first in the game in the opening inning. Leadoff man Harrison Bader reached on an error and Richie Martin walked. Then Florida second baseman Casey Turgeon hit a three run homer off the foul pole in right giving the Gators a 3-0 lead.
The next scoring action didn’t take place until the fourth inning, where Duke’s designated hitter, Chris Marconcini, hit a two run homer off of Simpson. The end of the fourth inning had the score at 3-2 with the Gators in the lead.
Stepping in on the mound in the top of the fifth inning was freshman left-hander, Parker Danciu, also making his collegiate debut for Florida. Danciu pitched 3.2 shutout innings, registering two strikeouts and two walks. Danciu walked the first batter he faced, Anthony D’Alessandro, and he stole second and advanced to third on a throwing error on the play by catcher Taylor Gushue. The Gators then came up big with a looking strikeout and a defensive play from Danciu, followed by a ground out to Josh Tobias that kept Duke scoreless in the fifth inning.
With a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the sixth inning, Gushue stepped to the plate and drew a walk. Pinch hitter Cory Reid singled to put runners on first and second and Josh Tobias sacrificed the runners along. Senior Cody Dent hit an RBI sacrifice fly to left field that scored Gushue, putting the Gators ahead at 4-2.
Relieving Danciu in the eighth inning was sophomore right-hander, Johnny Magliozzi, who came in as the closer and retired Duke’s last four batters to secure a 4-2 win.
Gator coach Kevin O’Sullivan talks about getting the first win of the season.
The Gators wrap up the series Sunday; tune to ESPN Radio 850/900 to get live coverage beginning at 11:55am.
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