Sports | Baseball
A 4-2 record in the Southeastern Conference Tournament last week secured a top-16 seed in the NCAA Tournament, granting Florida the ability to host a regional in Gainesville. Now, UF welcomes Oklahoma, Liberty and Central Michigan to Condron Ballpark for the event.
Regardless, with a return to Gainesville waiting for them if they fell, the seven-seeded Gators rallied to put together a solid 7-5 victory over the three-seeded Razorbacks. The win knocked off the reigning SEC Tournament champions, and kept the Gators fighting through Saturday.
Monday, Florida baseball announced the addition of Taylor Black as an assistant coach. Black joins the Gators after a five-year stint with the Detroit Tigers organization’s scouting department.
After a lengthy rain delay, redshirt freshman Ryan Slater allowed four runs in the eighth inning to the Sooners, a back-breaking frame that the Gators failed to recover from, losing 5-4 in a game that came down to the final at-bat.
One thing for certain, though, is that the crowd brought the most energy of the year Friday night, and it came at the right time.
Still, a fifth-inning explosion followed by a three-run sixth sufficiently iced a game in which the UF offense was nowhere to be found until it was too late. The seven-seeded Florida Gators fell in the Sunday finale to the top-seeded Vols’, 8-5.
Manning worked five scoreless innings against the two-seeded Aggies, and the offense scrapped for runs in all but two innings. In one of the more miraculous wins of the season, the seven-seeded Gators booked their trip to the tournament final Sunday with a 9-0 win.
Ficarrotta entered the game in relief to work a career-high 6.1 innings en route to a shutout performance. As a team, the seven-seeded Gators topped the 11-seeded Crimson Tide in a high-scoring 11-6 game.
Florida (35-20, 15-15) fell to South Carolina (27-27, 13-17) 4-1 in what could be the final game in Condron Ballpark for seven UF seniors.
Florida (35-19, 14-14) defeated South Carolina (26-27, 12-17) 8-0 on Friday, earning the series victory and an opportunity to sweep the Gamecocks on Saturday.