For the fifth straight season, the FGCU Eagles hosted a game at Hammond Stadium. With a record of 0-4 at the neutral site, the Eagles were ready to get their first Hammond Stadium win against the No. 19 University of Florida Gators.
The last time these two teams faced off here was the inaugural game for FGCU at Hammond on April 21, 2009. The Eagles fell 12-3 during that match-up. However, the Eagles know the match ups set at Hammond Stadium are never easy ones to win.
“We’re not playing Savannah of Art and Design, we’re playing Miami and Florida, two premiere programs in the country,” stated head coach Tollett.
Earlier this season, FGCU was able to improve their all-times series record against the Gators to 6-4 after sweeping them in a three game series in Gainesville.
However, after losing to FAU last Wednesday and a three-game series at Mercer this weekend, the Eagles went into the game against UF on a four game losing streak. This is partly due to losing sophomore Zach Tillery to an injury that occurred during the second game at Mercer. He has recently been hot at the plate.
“He’s hitting .465 over his last 15. That’s a big blow. He’s hot with the bat with a team that’s kind of struggling now to drive in runs,” stated Tollett.
FGCU began Tuesday night’s match up with the Gators strong. They led 1-0 until the fourth when the Gators tied it up.
From that inning on, the Gators took the lead for the rest of the game. The Eagles were only able to produce two more runs.
“One hit breaks it open. We had runners in scoring position a lot tonight and just couldn’t capitalize on it,” stated freshman Nick Rivera.
After the 5-3 loss, the Eagles extended their losing streak to five games and continue to perform poorly Monday through Friday.
Highlights for the Eagles included freshman Tyler Selesky, who went 2 for 4 and scored a run.
“We have not been very good midweek. We need to find a cure for our midweek. We’ve tried about every different category,” stated Tollett. “We thought if we could’ve won this, it could get us back on a roll again.”
With 21 games left on the regular season schedule, the Eagles need to get back to playing the baseball that had landed them at No. 23 according to Collegiate Baseball.
“The whole team isn’t clicking. We’re not timely enough, not getting the hits, the pitching, everything. It’s all a team effort. It’s not one thing,” stated junior Brandon Bednar. “But we’re confident enough to get back on the right track.”