March 25, 2008
GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Despite a 3-for-4 effort by freshman first baseman Glen Johnson in his collegiate debut, the Dolphins could not but a strangle hold on the Gators' hot bats as the JU baseball team fell to No. 18 Florida, 11-6, Tuesday evening at McKethan Stadium.
JU (13-8), which had its two-game winning streak against the Gators come to an end, dropped its fifth consecutive game and its seventh contest in its last eight outings.
UF (18-4), which scored in six of eight innings, pounded out 11 runs on 17 hits to win its third straight game and earn its 10th victory in its last 11 contests.
"Florida showed why they are ranked tonight," said JU head coach Terry Alexander. "They are on a roll right now and we couldn't find a way to slow them down. I was glad to see our offense come around a little bit in the fifth but we need to be more consistent if we want to split this series."
Freshman Sean Green (1-1) was tagged with the loss after allowing five runs on eight hits with three walks and two strikeouts in three innings. Clint Franklin (3-1) earned the win after hurling 2.2 innings of scoreless relief to go with a walk and three strikeouts.
Johnson, who started and appeared in his first game for the Dolphins, had a double and scored a run to lead the Dolphins. Senior center fielder Kevin Ferreira went 2-for-4 with an RBI to extend his career-high hitting streak to 15 games.
Josh Adams led the Gators offensively by finishing 4-for-5 with two doubles and five RBI. Cole Figueroa and Jon Townsend also finished with three hits each.
Florida took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first when Josh Adams hit an RBI single to center field with two outs and a runner on second.
The Gators increased the advantage to 3-0 in the bottom of the third when Jon Townsend tallied an RBI single and Dustin Bamberg drove in a run with a slow grounder to second.
UF made it 7-0 in the bottom of the fifth after scoring four runs on five hits while taking advantage of one Dolphin error.
JU cut the deficit to 7-5 in the top of the sixth when the Dolphins plated five runs on six hits while taking advantage of two Gator errors. Johnson led off the inning with a single to center and then moved to second on a base hit up the middle by junior right fielder Thomas Myers.
With runners on first and third with one out, junior Dan Maier hit a pinch-hit double down the third-base line to clear the bases. Ferreira followed with a single up the middle to drive in Maier and then moved to second on an infield single to second by junior left fielder Kyle Fleming.
With two outs, junior designated hitter Brad Simmons dropped a single into center to score Ferreira. In the next at-bat, senior shortstop Matt Lopez hit a grounder to third by Townsend's throw across the diamond sailed high which allowed Fleming to score. After Johnson reached first on catcher's interference to load the bases, Myers hit a towering shot to the warning track in left to end the inning.
The Gators answered back with two runs in the bottom of the fifth to make it 9-5 when Adams hit a two-run double to right center with two outs. UF increased the margin to 10-5 in the bottom of the sixth when Dustin Bamberg hit a solo home run to left center.
The Gators made it 11-5 in the bottom of the seventh when Cole Figueroa hit an RBI single up the middle with two outs.
JU added a run in the top of the ninth when Lopez hit a sacrifice fly to right to drive in Simmons, who led off the inning with a single to center.
JU and Florida will conclude its two-game series at John Sessions Stadium tomorrow night at 6:30 p.m. The contest can be heard live on 1010XL with Barry Milligan calling all the action while the game is also available on ASun.TV via JUDolphins.com.