No. 24 baseball holds on to defeat No. 2 UF again
On the heels of its 7-3 victory over No. 2 UF, the No. 24 FGCU baseball team headed to Gainesville and completed a two game sweep of the Gators with a 3-2 victory on Wednesday, March 8.
With a 3-2 lead and runners on base for UF, Gage Morey made a game saving diving catch with two outs in the bottom of the ninth to secure the Eagles’ 12th win of the season, eighth in a row.
“It’s been a great two days for this program,” FGCU head coach Dave Tollett said to FGCU Athletics in a press release. “To take two games against a team like Florida, it’s huge. Peyton Gray responded from a shaky start and was unreal on the mound. The bullpen backed him up and obviously Gage (Morey) made the catch to seal the deal.”
After a 7-3 win on Tuesday, March 7 at Jet Blue Park, Gray took the mound for the Eagles against left-hander Austin Langworthy.
The Gators got on the board in the first after Blake Reese led off with a walk and came around to score following a wild pitch a few batters later to take a 1-0.
The Gators lead wouldn’t last long as Eli Lovell and Spencer Levine would both reach on walks.
Richie Garcia advanced the two runners into scoring position on a sacrifice bunt to set up Elijah Eusebio with runners on second and third.
Coming through with his first collegiate hit, Eusebio scored Levine and Lovell to give the Eagles a 2-1 lead.
FGCU got two more runners on in the third and would score again on a Corey Fehribach RBI hit that plated Nick Rivera to take a 3-1 lead.
That would also be the last batter Langworthy would face as the Eagles chased the freshmen after just 2 2/3 innings.
The Eagles tried to add some insurance in the sixth as Lovell singled and Garcia walked, but Gators head coach Kevin O’Sullivan went to left handed Nick Horvath to get Fehribach to ground out to end the inning.
Gray finished his outing going six innings before Josh Dye made an appearance out of the bullpen.
Taking the mound in the bottom of the eighth, Dye retired the Gators despite giving up a one out hit to keep the Eagles up by two.
The Eagles would go to Kutter Crawford in the eighth, and Crawford struck out the side to keep the Eagles up 3-1 heading into the ninth.
With a chance to extend the Eagles win streak to eight, Tollett handed the ball to Sterling Koerner, who was looking to make his fourth save of the year.
JJ Schwarz hit a solo home run to trim the lead to one to start the inning. The Gators would then get another man on, but the Eagles were able to escape with the win thanks to Morey’s catch with two outs in the ninth.
With a record of 12-2, the Eagles will now head home for a three game weekend series where they take on Ohio State March 10-12 at Swanson Stadium.