Florida baseball evened the series against Ole Miss winning 7-0 Saturday afternoon in Gainesville. The Gators improved to 12-16 overall and 3-5 in SEC play. The Rebels fell to 23-5 and 4-4.
Gator starting pitcher Jonathon Crawford (1-4) went the distance to pick up his first win of the season. In his complete game effort, he allowed two hits, two walks, and struck out eight Rebels on 106 pitches. Ole Miss went three up and three down in six of the nine innings. Florida head coach Kevin O’Sullivan says he liked what he saw from his right-hander.
Florida opened up the scoring in the bottom of the second with sophomore Connor Mitchell’s Run Batted In single. Florida’s Designated Hitter Mike Fahrman gave Crawford more runs to work with after a two-run RBI double in the same frame to give the Gators the 3-0 lead.
Crawford says it takes a lot of pressure when your offense puts some runs on the board early.
Ole Miss threatened in the top of the sixth inning. The Rebels loaded the bases with two outs but Crawford got out of the jam striking out Ole Miss clean-up hitter Stuart Turner. Florida outfielder Harrison Bader lead of the bottom of the frame with a homer to left field to give the Gators the 4-0 lead.
O’Sullivan says Bader’s home run gave the team a lift they needed.
The Gators tallied two more runs in the bottom of the sixth to open up a six run advantage.
Florida catcher Taylor Gushue added another insurance run with an RBI double driving in Casey Turgeon to push the Gators’ lead to 7-0. Florida totaled 10 hits for the second straight game.
Crawford then retired the Rebels in order in the top of the eighth and then came back out to finish his gem. Stuart Turner grounded into the 5-4-3 double play to end the game giving Crawford his second career complete game shutout. The right-hander now has four of the longest outings a Gator starter has thrown this season.
Florida and Ole Miss will be back at it again Sunday afternoon for the rubber match of the three game series. Harrison Bader says after evening the series they have some momentum in the series finale.
You can catch all of the action from McKethan Stadium on ESPN Radio 850/900 beginning at 12:55p.m.