Game Of The Day: Miami 14, Florida 6
Admittedly, the score ended up being quite lopsided for a Game Of The Day pick, but this dichotomous rivalry game had a little bit of everything and sets up a pivotal rubber match on Sunday.
After cruising to a 10-4 win and series advantage on Friday, #6 Florida jumped out to a lead on Saturday with a two-run shot off the bat of early Golden Spikes favorite Jac Caglianone, his ninth of the season.
The Gators were also rolling on the mound early. Southern Miss transfer Hurston Waldrep was overpowering in the early frames, missing bats with his devastating split-change, as junior righthander racked up a career high 14 strikeouts in six innings. Caglianone’s 10th long ball of the year extended the lead to 6-1 and the Gators looked primed to secure the series win against the rival Hurricanes.
Caglianone and Canes slugger Yohandy Morales appeared to exchange a few pleasantries on the second trip around the bases, resulting in the umpires issuing a warning to Florida. Whether that lit a fire under Miami or not, it was all Hurricanes after that.
Miami’s Zach Levenson singled to lead off the sixth, and freshman Blake Cyr dropped the barrel on a Wadrep splitter, driving it over the fence for a two-run shot and cutting the deficit to 6-3.
The Canes then chased Wadrep and tied the game with a three-run seventh inning that was capped with RBI singles from Morales and Cyr.
The Gators nearly regained the lead in the bottom half, loading the bases with nobody out and sending a red hot Caglianone at the plate. Showing maturity beyond his years, Canes freshman reliever Chris Scinta elicited a ground ball double play to end the threat.
Miami took its first lead in the eighth inning with a solo home run off the bat of Renzo Gonzalez and the Canes didn’t look back, tacking on three more that inning.
Cyr homered again in the ninth, pausing to admire his handywork and throwing up the “U” while circling the bags.
Miami live-armed closer Andrew Walters closed the door with two scoreless innings, punching out four and setting up an intriguing rubber match on Sunday. Seems like a powder keg is on the cusp of erupting in Gainesville.
Upset Of The Day: Florida Gulf Coast 11, No. 16 Florida State 10.
Florida State was one of the hotter commodities in college baseball following their series win against TCU last weekend. The Florida Gulf Coast Eagles put a damper on the Seminoles breakout, however, beating them in Tallahassee on back-to-back nights to secure their first series win against a ranked team in a decade.
Junior second baseman Edrick Felix led the way offensively, going 2-for-5 with two home runs and five RBIs, while Alejandro Figueredo and Stephen Wilmer also had a pair of base knocks, respectively.
Max Rippl, Chase Kriebel, Connor O’Hara and LJ McDonough came up big in relief, keeping the Seminoles off the scoreboard in the last three and a third.
Player Of The Day: Cannon Peebles, NC State
Freshman Cannon Peebles put together an absurd stat line in NC State’s 21-2 shellacking over New Jersey Tech, going 6-for-6 with three doubles, two home runs and 10 RBIs. The switch-hitting backstop homered from right side in the second inning, then hit one from the left side in the fourth. In the eighth inning while a triple shy of the cycle, Peebles pulled a ball into the right field corner and sprinted around the bases, only to be thrown out at third trying to stretch what would wind up being his third double of the game.
Pitcher Of The Day: Payton Tolle, Wichita State
Utilizing a three-pitch mix, Tolle struck out a career high 10 hitters, allowing just one earned run, two hits and a walk in the Shockers’ 17-5 win over Oakland. If that weren’t enough, the 6-foot-6, 250-lefty helped his own cause by going a perfect 5-for-5 at the plate with a double, a home run and six RBIs (another career high). Tolle broke out a year ago by taking home MVP honors at the Frisco Classic, and he’s off to a strong start in the encore.
Play of the Day: Jace Bohrofen, Arkansas
In the second inning on Saturday, Arkansas right fielder Jace Bohrofen made a leaping catch up-and-over the fence to rob Wright State’s Justin Riemer of a grand slam that would have given the Raiders an early lead. Instead, the Razorbacks put up a five spot in the bottom-half and cruised to a 12-6 series securing win.
Strikeout Leaders Square Off
An afternoon contest in Winston-Salem brought a matchup of two of the national leaders in strikeouts-per-nine. Back-to-back ACC Pitcher of the Week, Wake Forest lefthander Sean Sullivan entered the game ranked in the country in strikeouts-per-nine (18.90) while Ball State countered with recently highlighted national leader (22.09) Ryan Brown, making his first career start.
The Deacs got to Brown early, with Adam Cecere waiting back on a split-change and driving it over the fence for a solo home run, his seventh of the year. Remarkably, that was just the second hit of the season allowed by the Ball State righthander. Bennett Lee followed with a sac fly to left which capped a second inning where Wake Forest drove Brown’s pitch count up.
Ball State’s Ryan Peltier tied the game in the bottom of the second with a two-run shot off Sullivan, but the Deacs responded with three more in the third inning which ultimately ended Brown’s day early. Ball State got a strong showing from Trennor O’Donnell out of the pen, who put up zeros for the final five innings to keep the game close.
Sullivan wasn’t quite as sharp as he was the past two weekends, but still punched out 10 hitters in five innings, scattering three earned runs on three hits. He now has 31 strikeouts in 15 innings this season, and opponents are hitting just .098 against him.
Cole Roland, Seth Keener and Camden Minacci didn’t allow a base runner over the last four innings, closing out the 7-4 win for undefeated Rake Forest.
Cocks Get Even
South Carolina evened the Palmetto State rivalry series with an 11-9 win over Clemson on Saturday, scoring all 11 of their runs in the final three innings.
The deciding blow was delivered off the bat of Carson Hornung, who entered today’s action hitting just .192 on the young season. He’ll never forget this blast, connecting for a monster three-run shot to right center in the bottom of the seventh to give the Gamecocks the lead.
Gamecocks catcher Cole Messina also had a big day at the plate, going 3-for-5 with a home run and three runs scored. Additionally, third baseman Talmadge LeCroy went 1-for-3 with three RBIs.
Bulldogs’ Bats Erupt
One day after handing Georgia Tech its first loss of the season, Georgia once again beat the Yellow Jackets, erupting for six home runs in a 16-6 series clinching win.
The Bulldogs offense was relentless in this one, putting runs on the board in seven different innings. The scoring was underscored by Charlie Condon, who went 3-for-4 at the dish with a pair of home runs and four RBIs. Senior and team leader Connor Tate also came up big for the Bulldogs, going 4-for-5 with two doubles and three runs scored.
Georgia starter Liam Sullivan earned the win to improve 2-0 on the year. The junior lefthander struck out eight over five and a third, scattering three hits and allowing just one earned run.
- #7 Vanderbilt won a back and forth contest over #18 Maryland at the Cambria College Classic 8-7 with a walk off sac fly from RJ Schreck. RJ Austin homered twice for the Commodores, while Andrew Dutkanych and Nick Maldonado combined to allow just one hit in relief over the final four innings.
- #14 Louisville got a standout performance from Greg Farone, a DIII transfer from Herkimer College. The 6-foot-6 lefthander produced a 7IP, 2H, 1R, 1ER, 2BB, 9K line in his first D1 start against #10 TCU at the Shriner’s College Classic. Farone absurdly struck out 139 hitters in just 60 innings last season and already has 21 punchies in just 12.1 innings with Louisville. Five Cardinals hitters had multiple hits in the 3-2 win, including Jack Payton who went 2-for-5 with a home run.
- Campbell could be knocking on the door for the top 25 after securing a series win on the road against a good Louisiana team on Saturday by a score of 8-6. Camels first baseman Drake Pierson went 2-for-4 with a double and a home run, while Aaron Rund struck out six in working the final four innings to earn the save.
- Georgia Southern jumped on UCF early, using an 11-run first inning to propel them to a 19-7 win to even the series. Eagles first baseman Noah Ledford went 4-for-4 at the plate with a double, a home run and six RBIs.
- Long Beach State got a big upset on the road against #9 ECU, beating the Pirates 3-2. Rocco Peppi led the way offensively for the Dirtbags, going 3-for-5 with a pair of doubles, while freshman righthander Kellan Montgomery allowed just one hit over three scoreless innings for the nine-out save.
- #25 Southern Miss rebounded from a tough fought series loss against Illinois last weekend to take a series against Dallas Baptist. After edging out the Patriots 4-3 on Friday, the Golden Eagles got another one-run victory on Saturday by the score of 2-1. Reece Ewing’s two-run homer in the fourth was all that Southern Miss starter Matthew Adams would need. The junior righthander allowed just one run on four hits over seven and a third, striking out 11 and walking two.
- UC Irvine beat Arizona State 10-9, winning the series and improving to 9-1 on the season. Chase Call’s eighth inning grand slam made the difference for the Eaters, and Abraham Garcia-Pacheco went 4-for-4 at the plate with four RBIs.