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Florida Baseball Takes Game 2 From Tennessee 4-2

The Florida baseball team defeated Tennessee in Game Two of a three game set Friday night 4-2.  With the win Florida clinched the regular season SEC title.  Florida can tie a school record of 22 SEC wins with a W Saturday afternoon.

Florida head coach Kevin O’Sullivan was proud of the way his team competed.

“I was really proud of the guys for responding the way that they did tonight. We talked before the game about the importance of coming out and playing hard and we got some clutch hits, timely pitching and great defense throughout the game. We didn’t want to share the title with anyone and the kids can now say that they are outright SEC Champions.”

Freshman A.J. Puk picked up his fourth SEC win of the year in Fridays game.  Puk struck five in five innings of work.  He allowed just one run to score on his time on the mound. 

It didn’t take long for the Orange and Blue to reach the scoreboard as UF’s Taylor Gushue drove in the game’s first run in the top of the first.  After a four-inning scoreless drought, Zack Powers drove in Harrison Bader on a ground ball to second base giving Florida a 2-1 lead in the sixth. 

Florida added two insurance runs in the eighth when pinch hitter Josh Tobias knocked in two runs with a two out single. 

Freshman Kirby Snead closed out the game for the second consecutive night, picking up his second save of the season.  Snead struck out one in 2.1 innings of work on the hill. 

Coach O’Sullivan was pleased with his freshmen pitchers.

“A.J. gave us a great start – his fastball had a lot of life tonight and I love to see the progress of him going a career-best five innings. (Justin) Shafer bridged the gap and we went to Kirby (Snead) again and he did a really good job of closing out the game. It’s great to see the young guys grow every time they step on the mound and I like the way we are pitching as we wind down the grind of the regular season.”

Florida will look to sweep the Volunteers tomorrow afternoon at 1.  You can listen into the Gator IMG Sports Network where Steve Russell and Jeff Cardozo will have the call.    

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