. fast facts
N.C. State at Florida
What/where: Super Region; McKethan Stadium, Gainesville
Format/next: Best-of-three; winner goes to College World Series
Schedule: 2 p.m. today, 1 p.m. Sunday, 1 p.m. Monday if necessary
TV: Today and Sunday, ESPNU; Monday, ESPN2
Of note: The Gators (45-18) are two wins away from their third consecutive World Series berth. As the No. 1 seed, they went 3-0 in winning last weekend's double-elimination region tournament in Gainesville. … The Wolfpack (43-18), a No. 1 seed for the region tournament it hosted, went 4-1. It beat Vanderbilt in Monday's winner-take-all game 9-7. … Florida opens with righty Hudson Randall (8-2, 2.83 ERA). N.C. State is expected to go with lefty Carlos Rodon (9-0, 1.61 ERA), who was recently named Collegiate Baseball's national freshman of the year and a finalist for the Golden Spikes award for player of the year. … N.C. State third baseman Trea Turner, a Lake Worth native, is hitting .344 and leads the nation in stolen bases (56-of-60). "I take it as a challenge and so does our pitching staff," Florida catcher Mike Zunino said. "We really work hard on holding runners, changing our looks up and, hopefully, just try to limit him as much as we can." … Nine Gators were drafted this week, including Zunino third overall. But coach Kevin O'Sullivan said he likes the way his players practiced: "I think they understand they can't advance if they don't play well this weekend."
Antonya English, Times staff writer