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Friday, April 12, 2024

Miami defeats Florida baseball in Game 2 of weekend series

The Canes hit three home runs in Game 2 to even the weekend series

Gators baseball freshman pitcher Liam Peterson strides to the plate in the team's win over Columbia University on Saturday, February 24, 2024.
Gators baseball freshman pitcher Liam Peterson strides to the plate in the team's win over Columbia University on Saturday, February 24, 2024.

Down five runs, the Gators slowly chipped away at their deficit and made it a 5-3 ballgame.

The momentum was gradually shifting, and with two runners on and just one out in the top of the seventh, Florida felt just moments away from taking over control.

Then, the home plate umpire motioned a pitch clock violation against Gators sophomore infielder Cade Kurland. Kurland was called for strike three and all momentum was lost.

Florida left both runners stranded and succumbed to a subpar performance from its bullpen to end the game.

The No. 4 Florida Gators (7-2) fell to the Miami Hurricanes (5-4) 10-6 Saturday afternoon at Mark Light Field.

The long ball was the primary contributor to offensive production for both teams.

Miami immediately got to Gators freshman right-handed pitcher Liam Peterson in the first inning. Peterson allowed two of his first three batters to reach base and Jason Torres took the freshman deep with a no-doubt, three-run home run to left field.

Peterson struggled to find his footing as the Canes quickly tacked on more runs.

He walked his first batter, struck out two and then surrendered a two-run home run to outfielder Edgardo Villegas. Miami held a five-run lead which lasted until the fifth inning.

With one swing of the bat, Florida third baseman Dale Thomas dwindled the Gators’ deficit to two runs with a three-run home run over the left field wall.

Miami starting pitcher Rafe Schlesginer dominated Florida’s lineup besides one errant pitch. He retired 11 consecutive batters before the Gators’ offense found production with Thomas’ home run. 

After a fifth inning where he surrendered three runs and four hits, Schlesinger pitched another 1-2-3 inning and was taken out in the seventh inning after allowing two runners on base. 

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He finished the outing with three runs, nine strikeouts and two walks over 6 ⅓  innings pitched.

The Gators had two runners on with one out until Kurland struck out due to the pitch clock violation.

Florida lost all momentum, and despite tacking on three late runs, the Gators bullpen surrendered five runs to the Canes in the final two innings. 

Miami infielder Daniel Cuvet hit a three-run blast to dead center field to extend the Canes’ lead to 9-3. 

Florida’s relievers surrendered five runs, four hits and two walks across three innings. The bullpen tallied just three strikeouts despite facing 17 batters.

The Gators will face the Hurricanes at 2 p.m. Sunday in the rubber match at Mark Light Field. The game will be broadcast on the ACC Network.

Contact Luke Adragna at ladragna@alligator.org. Follow him on Twitter @lukeadrag.

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Luke Adragna

Luke Adragna is a third-year journalism student and the Florida Gators football reporter at The Alligator. He is a cat ethusiast and completes the NYT Daily Mini in less than a minute each day.


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