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UF Baseball: Gators Fall to FAU in Extra Innings Pitching Duel

Jordan Carrion and the Gators were unable to deliver the timely hits as they did last week.

Courtesy of University Athletic Association

BY ZACH DIRLAM

The No. 6 Gators dropped a 10-inning pitching duel to No. 21 Florida Atlantic Wednesday evening, as they were on the wrong side of a 3-2 decision at Florida Ballpark / McKethan Field.

After FAU took a 1-0 lead in the opening frame, Florida took the lead in the bottom of the second after a lead-off walk by freshman outfielder Sterlin Thompson and a two-run home run by freshman infielder Colby Halter.

The Owls tied the game with a one-out double and RBI single, but third-year sophomore outfielder Jacob Young cut down the potential go-ahead run at home plate with his second outfield assist of the season. Young also opened the bottom of the first with a single, extending his hitting streak to 27 games and eclipsing Brad Wilkerson (1997) for the second-longest streak in program history.

The Gators put its leadoff hitter on second base in both the sixth and eighth innings, with fourth-year utility player Jordan Butler smacking a double in the former and Young singling and taking second on a wild pitch in the latter.

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A fielding error extended the 10th inning for FAU, and the Owls capitalized with a two-out RBI single to take a 3-2 lead. Florida went down in order in the ninth and 10th innings.

STANDOUT STAT: 14 – strikeouts by Gators hitters, a season high.

FROM COACH KEVIN O’SULLIVAN

On the team’s performance…
“Disappointing. Credit FAU. They kept getting us out the same way over and over. A lot of deep counts. A lot of soft stuff 3-2 counts, 2-2 counts. We chased a lot of balls down and out of the zone. We chased some balls up. Having some issues there at short, we need to shore up defensively. It just was not a good game. That falls on me. I’ll look at this tomorrow, but I think we got some guys taking their bats out on defense. It’s not focused. It’s not where it needs to be. We’ve been really good offensively up until tonight. I just don’t think the focus was quite as sharp as it needs to be. Probably need to tighten up a few things.

“Thought the pitching was good. Thought Garrett [Milchin] did a nice job for his second start in a really long time. Thought Trey [Van Der Weide] came in and did a really nice job. [Jordan] Butler did his job. Timmy Manning had a really good outing. And I thought Franco [Aleman] came in and took a step forward. Obviously the one pitch, we’re trying to pitch around [Mitchell] Hartigan with the right-hander on deck, and we just missed one spot. That ball was supposed to be off the plate, and it got too much of the white. But I thought he pitched better. Bright spot for us tonight pitching-wise.”

UP NEXT: Florida continues its 13-game home stand with a three-game series against Florida A&M. First pitch for Friday’s series opener is scheduled for 6 p.m., with ESPN 98.1FM/850AM WRUF providing radio coverage.