The Florida baseball team showed up to McKethan Stadium Tuesday night and proved they could still win midweek games.
After three consecutive midweek losses, the Gators defeated the USF Bulls 8-2 in their final regular season home game of the year.
The Bulls plated a run in the first frame, but the Gators were quick to retaliate with a run of their own. In the following inning, USF struck again, plating their second and final run of the game. Once more, Florida retaliated, scoring five runs to effectively put the game out of reach. The big hit was a bases loaded double by Harrison Bader that scored three runs. Peter Alonso also plated a run with an RBI double.
Gator shortstop Richie Martin had three hits in the game and Bader had two to lead the Florida offensive attack.
The Gators proved to be efficient, with the pitching staff keeping South Florida at bay as the offense scored two more insurance runs. Kirby Snead got the win in relief.
“Danny Young did a real nice job and Kirby Snead was outstanding again. He threw three and a third (innings), I believe only 30 pitches. If I’m not mistaken, he threw 27 strikes out of 30 pitches,” Gator coach Kevin O’Sullivan said.
The atmosphere in the dugout after the game was different than it had been this past weekend. All were pleased, notably head coach Kevin O’Sullivan.
“Overall, it was a good night. I thought we bunted really well, I thought we played good defense, and Kirby Snead was outstanding on the mound,” O’Sullivan said. “This is an important game for us to kind of gain some momentum going into the weekend in Knoxville.”
The Gators will head north to play Tennessee in their final regular season series in hopes of clinching the SEC title. The magic number to do that is one over second place Ole Miss.
The series begins Thursday at 6 pm, but you can catch live coverage on ESPN 850 WRUF starting at 5:55.
For audio from Tuesday’s game, click the links below: