JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville University baseball (7-5) fell behind early and fell to North Florida (6-7) 12-5 in the Fourth Annual Mayor's Cup at Harmon Stadium on Tuesday.
"We just didn't play very well," said Head Coach Chris Hayes. "We had an opportunity to stay in this game, but give UNF credit, they took advantage of the opportunities presented to them."
JU starter Nathan Disch allowed a solo home run to UNF's Chris Berry in the second, and the Ospreys never looked back, chasing Disch in the third while plating four runs.
JU had a chance in the top of the third, when Zack Smith led off the inning with a walk, one of three earned by the senior in his first start of the season. Smith was perfect at the plate, but was thrown out at second on a failed hit-and-run. Franco Guardascione then doubled and tried to score on a wild pitch three batters later, but was thrown out at the plate. That was the closest the Dolphins would come to scoring until the seventh.
UNF added to its 5-0 lead in the bottom of the sixth, bringing all nine to the plate and scoring four on five hits and an error.
Jacksonville got on the board in the top of the seventh, when Smith and Reagan Wright singled to lead off the inning, and both came home to score on Scott Dubrule's double, one of three hits for the sophomore, who has now banged out 15 base knocks in five games vs. the Ospreys in his career. He then came home on a wild pitch, and JU was within seven, 10-3.
North Florida tacked on one more in both the seventh and the eighth, before JU loaded the bases in the ninth. John Cassala singled in a run and Jacob Southern drove in another on an RBI ground out, but that was all for the Dolphins.
Jacksonville returns home tomorrow night to host the South Florida Bulls (7-5). First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m. at John Sessions Stadium. It is NAPA Night at the ballpark.
"We have a very good team coming in. We have to get back to what we do well and play clean baseball," said Hayes.