The Florida Gator baseball team took down Missouri 4-3 on the road in the opening game of this SEC series Friday night. Another strong start from junior Alex Faedo, who is now 5-1 on the season, led the Gators and Michael Byrne picked up his second save in a row.
Florida’s bats were swinging early, tallying their first run in the first inning after Deacon Liput led off with a single who later scored on an RBI single from JJ Schwarz. and and RBI brought JJ Schwarz brought him home. In the third, Nick Horvath walked, advancing on a Liput single and he would score on an error to make it 2-0. In the sixth inning, Nelson Maldanado was hit by a pitch and Mike Rivera followed with a long home run into the wind in left field to give Florida a 4-0 lead.
But the Tigers would not go down easily. In the seventh inning, Alex Samples doubled and Chris Cornelius singled him home, ending Faedo’s scorless innngs streak at 13.2 innings. In the eighth inning, an RBI double by Brian Sharp brought home a run and a run scoring single by pinch hitter Brett Bond narrowed Florida’s lead to 4-3 but Byrne came on in relief to pitch 1.1 innings allowing no runs or hits to pick up his third save and second of the week after he got the save against FSU on Tuesday.
Florida plays Missouri in the second game of the series at 3 pm today with Brady Singer getting the start for the Gators; you can hear the game live on ESPN Gainesville 98.1 FM/850 AM WRUF.