April 16, 2008
Tallahassee, Fla. - Second-ranked Florida State (33-3) won its eleventh straight game with a 10-2 victory over North Florida (21-17) Wednesday night on Mike Martin Field inside Dick Howser Stadium. The Seminoles scored five runs in the bottom of the first and never looked back to remain undefeated all-time against the Ospreys in just their third season at the Division I level.
"I am just very proud of the way our guys approached the game," said head coach Mike Martin. "We are talking about a team that has played Florida very tough in three games. They beat a very good UCF team five times in a row. They have a club that is very experienced even though they have a lot of sophomores."
Five Seminoles recorded two hits including Jason Stidham who collected a pair of doubles. The sophomore second baseman also drove in two runs and scored twice in the win. Buster Posey extended his hit streak to eight games with a 2-for-3 performance. Tony Delmonico, Tommy Oravetz and Jack Rye also registered two hits in Wednesday's victory over the Ospreys.
"We definitely came out here and put some good at-bats together," said Delmonico. "We pitched well and played some good defense tonight and that's what you have to do to win ball games."
Freshman Mike McGee made his sixth career start and improved to 5-1 on the season as he gave the Seminoles a solid five innings of work. The right hander from Port St. Lucie, Fla., allowed a run on four hits as he walked three and struck out three.
"Tonight was a great display of character for our club," added Martin. "We understand how this game works, any thing can happen. Mike McGee pitched well. It was a good win for us."
John Gast made his first appearance of the season in the sixth as the freshman southpaw saw live action for the first time in college after under going Tommy John surgery at the end of his senior season at Lake Brantley High School. Gast retired the side after facing four batters. He walked one and did not allow a run or a hit.
"It was exciting," said Gast taking the mound for the first time as a Seminole. "I felt my legs getting a little weak when I was told I was going to pitch tonight. Actually I started pacing in the dugout when Coach Shouppe told me I was going in. Just the anticipation of coming into the ball game was great. It was just very exciting; that's pretty much the only word I can use to describe that moment. "
Bo O'Dell, Tyler Everett and Jimmy Marshall each worked an inning in relief in the win. Tyler Holt reached base on a walk in the fourth as he has now reached base safely in every game this season. The freshman center fielder was also hit by a pitch in the fifth as he also collected two runs.
North Florida took an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first on an RBI groundout by Travis Martin. The Ospreys' Chad Knight drew a one out walk and moved to third on a double down the right field line by Preston Hale. One batter later, Knight would score the first run of the game on the groundout to second by Martin. UNF looked as though they would add a second run on a wild pitch by McGee but the ball caromed right back to Buster Posey who tossed on to McGee at the plate to get Hale trying to steal home for the final out of the inning.
The lead was short lived as the Seminoles pushed across five runs in their half of the first to take a four run lead. The first four batters to come to the plate in the inning reached and scored. Holt led things off reaching on a fielding error by the Osprey shortstop and came around to score from first on a double to right by Jason Stidham. After loading the bases on a walk to Buster Posey and a single to right by Rye, Delmonico drew a one out walk bringing Stidham home for a 2-0 lead. Designated hitter Tommy Oravetz extended his hitting streak to a career-best five games with a two-run single to right plating Posey and Rye. Delmonico scored the fifth run of the inning when a balk was called on UNF starter George Lott (0-1).
FSU added two more runs in the fourth to increase its lead to 7-1. Holt once again reached base to lead off the inning this time courtesy of a walk. After a wild pitch moved Holt to second, Stidham drove him in on his second double of the game. Stidham would score two batters later on single to right by Rye.
Stuart Tapley recorded an RBI in the fifth on a groundout to short plating Delmonico. Delmonico started the inning lacing a single to center. After a walk to Oravetz moved Delmonico to second, both runners advanced a base on a sacrifice bunt by Luke Smierciak.
In the eighth, North Florida cut the lead to 8-2 on back-to-back hits off Everett. Robbie Collier hit a one out double to left and scored on a single to center by pinch hitter Kevin Martin.
The Seminoles countered in the bottom of the eighth thanks to a two-run home run off the bat of Jack Posey. After two quick outs to start the inning, Ruairi O'Connor got things started legging out an infield single to short. Posey stepped to the plate and on a 0-2 offering from Antonio Franzese belted his second round tripper of the season over the wall in left for a 10-2 advantage.
Rivalry week continues as Florida State welcomes Miami to Dick Howser Stadium for a three-game conference set beginning Friday, April 18 at 7:00 p.m. First pitch for Saturday and Sunday is set for 7:00 p.m. and 12:30 p.m., respectively. Fans can catch all the action over the internet as ACC Select and gametracker will be available for all three contests. The game can also be heard live over the radio on 1270 the Team (Friday) and 100.7 FM (Saturday and Sunday) with Eric Luallen providing all the play-by-play action.