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No. 1 Florida Gators baseball opens important series against No. 12 LSU tonight



Following an eight-game road swing, the Florida baseball team returns home to begin a critical series against LSU tonight McKethan Stadium.

The Gators (24-5, 6-3 SEC) have lost three of their last four games, and hope the return home for the first time since March 20 might be helpful. 

"Every year I've been here we've gone through something like this, and it's just how you respond,'' catcher Mike Zunino said. "Some older guys are stepping up talking to the young guys, taking them under their wings a little bit more. We just need to have a better all-around effort sometimes. It's just that time of year where you have to pull together and try to get through it.''

LSU (23-6, 6-3 in the SEC) enters tonight's game on a hot streak. The Tigers have won six straight, including last week's three-game sweep of Arkansas.

Junior Brian Johnson (4-0, 3.29) will start tonight's opener against LSU sophomore Kurt McCune (1-3, 4.76). On Friday, sophomore Karsten Whitson (1-0, 4.05) will make his first start since Feb. 26 against LSU sophomore Kevin Gausman (5-0, 2.27). Whitson threw eight pitches in Tuesday night's loss to North Florida after being out since early in the year with a strained right arm. The series finale will pit junior Hudson Randall  (3-1, 3.56) against LSU sophomore Ryan Eades (4-1, 1.91).

Tonight's game will begin at 7:30 p.m., and will be televised nationally on ESPNU. Friday's game begins at 7 p.m., and will be televised Fox Sports Florida.

"We've got an exciting weekend,'' Zunino said. "We've just got to come out and refocus. We've got to take control of what we can control and go from there.''

[Last modified: Thursday, April 5, 2012 11:24am]


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