Gator Baseball drubs Aggies in SEC series opener
Mace throws career high 11 strikeouts
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - Florida opened up Southeastern Conference play at home with a dominant performance on the mound and at the plate to beat Texas A&M 13-4 Thursday night.
The No. 5 Gators (14-5) jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the third, as Nathan Hickey singled to right to score Mac Guscette, then Kirby McMullen singled to left to bring home Colby Halter and Jacob Young. Hickey would wind up 3-4 at the dish with the lone rbi, while McMullen’s only hit of the game made him 1-4 on the night.
The next inning, the offense did the bulk of their damage to the Aggies (15-5) pitching.
After Guscette lead off the home half of the 4th with a double, Halter hammered a 1-2 pitch out to right that carried over the fence and into the burm for a 2-run homer for his third of the season. With the lead now 5-1, Jud Fabian roped a double to left center, followed by Hickey and McMullen each drawing walks. Fabian would score on a wild pitch from third and Hickey would tag up to cross home on a Kendrick Calilao sacrifice fly. Shortstop Josh Rivera singled a run in, as did Guscette, to balloon Florida’s lead up to 9-1.
The Gators scored six runs in the 4th on four hits, as the Aggies fell deep into a hole they would never be able to climb out of.
After scratching out three runs in the top of the 6th to cut Florida’s lead to 9-4, the orange and blue responded with four runs of their own. Young’s single to left drove in Calilao to make it 10-4, followed by Fabian’s 3-run blast to right center to put the finishing touches on this one.
On the mound, Tommy Mace put on quite a performance.
He set a career high with 11 strikeouts and never issued a single walk. He did allow six hits, but was only charged for 2 runs. His command of pitches was impressive as he had A&M hitters off balance on a number of at-bats.
Mace improved to 4-0 on the season as the Gators took game one of the three game series 13-4.
Florida hosts Texas A&M Friday and Saturday.
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