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Florida Gators advance in baseball, softball

Florida’s Mike Zunino scores as Miami’s Shane Rowland is late with the tag. UF will host a super region after an 11-4 win.

Associated Press

Florida’s Mike Zunino scores as Miami’s Shane Rowland is late with the tag. UF will host a super region after an 11-4 win.

GAINESVILLE — There's something about Miami that really gets Florida pitcher and Alonso High alum Alex Panteliodis going. He can't quite explain it, and the Gators aren't questioning. They are just enjoying the spoils of his work.

Panteliodis pitched his longest outing of the season— 62/3 innings, allowing one run — and former Plant standout Preston Tucker went 2-of-4 with five RBIs to help lead Florida to an 11-4 victory over Miami in the Gainesville Region.

Florida (47-16) advanced to its school-record third consecutive NCAA super region, where it will host Mississippi State. The days of games have not been determined. The Bulldogs (37-23) beat Georgia Tech 7-3 to take the Atlanta Region. C.T. Bradford drove in four runs and Nick Routt pitched a six-hitter for Mississippi State

"I don't know, something sparks me against them," said Panteliodis, whose ERA is 0.75 with one earned run in 12 innings in his past two starts. "There's just something about them. They're a great ball team, but they just spark me."

Tucker, who was named the region's most outstanding player, hit a three-run homer in the first inning — the seventh of his postseason career, tying the UF record set by Mario Linares from 1988-91. His 26th RBI broke Linares' career record in NCAA postseason play.

"I didn't know that, but right now it's all about winning games," said Tucker, who finished the region batting .500 (7-for-14) with 11 RBIs, six runs, three home runs and three doubles. "Florida has had a great program for 100 years, so I know it's going to mean something someday, but right now I'm just trying to get guys in. … I'm just trying to drive in the runs."

Miami used to dominate Florida in the postseason.

"Well, I hope it flip-flops again very soon," Miami coach Jim Morris said. "We did eliminate Florida a lot of times, and they're getting even right now.''

For more on the game, go to tampabay.com/blogs/gators.

FSU game suspended: The Florida State-Alabama region game in Tallahassee resumes at noon today with the Seminoles leading 8-1 in the top of the sixth. Bad weather interrupted play. Sun Sports will televise the rest of the game. Alabama must win to force a deciding game.

Other regions: In Charlottesville, host Virginia beat East Carolina 13-1 and will host a super region for the second consecutive year. … In Chapel Hill, host North Carolina beat James Madison 9-3 to clinch the region, winning three games by a combined 27-3. … In Nashville, Taylor Hill struck out 13 to lead host Vanderbilt to a 6-1 victory over Belmont and into the super regions. … In Columbia, host South Carolina leads Stetson 4-1 in the top of the fifth with the game scheduled to resume at 1 today. A storm suspended play.

Softball: Florida wins twice, reaches final

OKLAHOMA CITY — Kelsey Bruder and Brittany Schutte hit back-to-back home runs in the first inning, sending Florida to a 9-2 victory against Alabama and a spot in the Women's College World Series final against top-seeded Arizona State.

The Gators beat the second-seeded Crimson Tide (53-11) twice to reach the championship round, jumping on Kelsi Dunne to take control in both games. Alabama had a shutout streak of 301/3 innings coming in.

Florida (56-11) scored a World Series record 11 runs in the first inning of the first game and sent Alabama to a program-worst 16-2 loss in five innings, matching World Series records for runs and margin of victory. In the second game, Bruder and Schutte provided a quick 3-0 lead and Aja Paculba hit a three-run homer in the seventh.

"Everybody said it's the bats and everybody said it's this and everybody said it's that. It's not that. It's our hitters,'' UF coach Tim Walton said. "Give them a wood piece, give them a stick. I guarantee they're going to find a way to hit a home run."

Arizona State advanced with a 4-0 victory over Baylor.

Big ten: The conference football championship game will be in Indianapolis through at least 2015, with weather cited as a factor in not rotating with an outdoor venue. Chicago will rotate conference basketball tournaments with Indianapolis beginning next season.

Football: Junior linebacker Herman Lathers, Tennessee's leading returning tackler, has a broken ankle and will likely miss at least part of the season.

Golf: Patrick Reed closed out Augusta State's second straight NCAA title, beating Georgia's Harris English 2 and 1 in the featured matchup in Stillwater, Okla., between each team's top player. Augusta State, located in the shadows of Augusta National, competes in Division II in all sports except golf.

Information from Times wires was used in this report.

.softball

World Series final: UF vs. Arizona St.

When: Tonight, Tuesday and, if necessary, Wednesday (all games 8 p.m., ESPN2)

Where: Oklahoma City

Records: Fourth seed UF 56-11; top seed Arizona State 58-6.

Notable: An SEC team has never won the title. Florida reached the championship round two years ago, losing to Washington two games to none. Arizona State, which beat Florida 6-5 Friday, has reached the championship round for the first time since winning its only title in 2008.

Florida Gators advance in baseball, softball 06/05/11 [Last modified: Sunday, June 5, 2011 11:56pm]
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