Trailing by five runs entering the ninth inning, the No. 24 FGCU baseball rallied to score six runs in the ninth and defeat the Ohio State Buckeyes Friday night at Swanson Stadium.
FGCU mounted its comeback in the ninth, loading the bases and scoring two runs on bases-loaded walks.
Alex Brait would be retired, but Gage Morey would reach on what could have been a game-ending double play, but an error by the pitcher, Yianni Pavlopolous, extended the game on a throwing error on the throw to the plate
Matt Reardon then tied the game with a two-run hit into right field to tie the game at nine.
Julio Gonzalez followed and came up with runners on first and second and would hit what seemed like a double play again, but the throw from second basemen McGowan would go out of play, and the Eagles went on to win their ninth game in walk-off fashion.
“I think going into the ninth we had 23 or 36 quality at bats,” FGCU head coach Dave Tollett said. “We hit some balls on the screws, we just couldn’t get a break. We come to the ninth, we got a leadoff man on. We got the next guy on, and boy I’ll tell you what, when you’re hot, you’re hot, and I don’t think we’ve ever scored six runs in the ninth here in my career to win one like that.”
Garrett Anderson (1-0) made the start for the Eagles as he went up against Jake Post (1-1) for the Buckeyes.
The Eagles got the bats going early after Gonzalez singled and Nick Rivera walked.
With runners on first and third, the Buckeyes had a chance to get out of the inning on a groundout to first basemen Bo Coolen, but his throw to second got away. The Eagles took a 1-0 lead as Gonzalez scored.
Eli Lovell followed the miscue by poking a single into left-scoring Rivera, giving the Eagles a 2-0 lead after one.
The Buckeyes got one back in the second as Coolen walked and came around to score on an infield hit by Tyler Cowles.
Morey extended the Eagles’ lead with his first career home run on a long blast to right field.
In the fifth, Ohio State would take the lead with four runs as Jalen Washington would plate their first run of the inning on a double.
The Buckeyes would then have RBI hits from Zack Ratcliff and Coolen before Anderson was pulled.
Christian Townsend came in and gave up an RBI hit to Brady Cherry and the Eagles were down 5-3.
Curtis Irving would be done in the fifth as well, after a leadoff walk to Jake Smith, as right-hander Curtis Irving came in relief. He would immediately walk Lovell, setting up Corey Fehribach a chance to move the runners up.
After the successful sacrifice bunt, Levine knocked in a run on a ground-out to trim the lead to one.
The Buckeyes added to their lead after Washington hit a solo home run in the seventh and increased their lead to 6-4.
They would add two more on an RBI double by Cowles to push their lead to 8-4 in the seventh and one more on another RBI double by Washington in the eighth to go up 9-4.
Thanks to their six-run inning in the bottom of the ninth, the Eagles moved to 13-2 on the season and extended their win streak to nine games.
Trey Vickery (1-0) got the win for the Eagles as he pitched a clean ninth inning before the Eagles’ rally in the ninth.
The Eagles will look to take the series when they hand the ball off to Kutter Crawford Saturday at 1:00 before Josh Dye gets the ball for the finale of the three-game series on Sunday.