Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Sports

Florida Gators lose two games in Gainesville baseball regional

GAINESVILLE — Kevin O'Sullivan felt "really good" about his Florida baseball team heading into this weekend's NCAA tournament region.

But back-to-back days of hourslong weather delays and trouble scoring ended the Gators' season much earlier than they'd anticipated, following a 5-2 loss to North Carolina in an elimination game Saturday afternoon.

"It's definitely a shock," said second baseman and Dunedin High grad Casey Turgeon, who was 2-for-4 with one RBI and a run scored. "We didn't play our best game these past two days, and credit College of Charleston and North Carolina. They came with their A game and we didn't."

The SEC champs totaled 6:29 in weather delays. They lost to Charleston (42-17) 3-2 in a game that started Friday and ended early Saturday after being delayed for 3 hours, 15 minutes.

It was the first time Florida (40-23) has been eliminated at home in two games during postseason play since 2009 — vs. Southern Mississippi in the Super Region. The No. 2 national seed had never been eliminated in two games in a region played in Gainesville. Dating to the 2012 World Series, the Gators have lost six consecutive NCAA Tournament games.

As North Carolina (35-26) batted in the bottom of the third, the game was halted for 3:19 after heavy rain flooded the field at McKethan Stadium.

When the game resumed, freshman pitcher Kirby Snead allowed five runs in 11 pitches, more than enough for North Carolina. Bobby Poyner held the Tar Heels scoreless before the rain delay, but left two on base when play was halted.

UF left 24 on base, 13 Saturday.

FSU eliminated

TALLAHASSEE — Wade Wass and Mikey White homered, left-hander Justin Kamplain pitched eight scoreless innings and Alabama (35-23) ousted Florida State 6-5. The NCAA began Super Regions for the baseball tourney in 1999. This is only the third time (2006 and 2007) FSU hasn't advanced to it. Kamplain (7-3) was lifted after a leadoff single in the ninth, and FSU capitalized on the wildness of two Alabama relievers for its runs. The Seminoles (43-17) managed only eight singles in their two tournament losses.

B-CU wins; UM falls

CORAL GABLES — Matt Noble was 2-for-3 with three RBIs and Bethune-Cookman withstood a late Columbia rally, 6-5, in an elimination game. Bethune-Cookman (27-32) plays Miami (42-18), which was beaten by Texas Tech 3-0 Saturday night, at 2 p.m. today. Columbia finished 29-20. Tech (42-18) awaits the Miami vs. B-CU winner at 7 tonight.

Information from Times wires was used in this report.

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