Florida baseball wins sixth straight series vs. Miami

By Adam Silverstein
February 24, 2019
Florida baseball wins sixth straight series vs. Miami
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Image Credit: UAA Communications

No. 3 Florida Gators baseball struggled Friday when it began its annual series with the Miami Hurricanes, but the Gators turned things around in a major way over the weekend to take down the Canes 2-1 and win their sixth straight head-to-head series over their in-state rivals. Florida (5-3) is now 12-3 against Miami (5-2) over the teams’ last 15 meetings dating back to 2015.

The Gators fell 5-2 in the series opener on Friday at McKethan Stadium in Gainesville, Florida, allowing five runs on 13 hits. The game was tied 2-2 after the sixth, but Miami scored the final three runs off the game, tagging sophomore left-handed reliever Jordan Butler for two earned runs.

Florida’s offense bounced back Saturday, though it took five scoreless innings for both teams to get going. A three-run home run gave UM a lead in the top of the sixth, but UF cut into it with a sacrifice fly in the bottom frame. The Gators then scored four runs each in the seventh and eighth with a triple from junior right fielder Wil Dalton (2/4, 3 RBI, R, BB, K) and two run-scoring hits from freshman first baseman Kendrick Calilao (2/4, 3 RBI) leading to a 9-3 win to tie the series.

Florida started with a lead for the first time this weekend on Sunday and never trailed in a clean 4-1 win. Miami briefly tied the game in the top of the fourth, but the hosts responded immediately to retake the advantage and hold on for the rest of the game. Sophomore right-handed pitcher Jack Leftwich (5.0 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 7 K, 2 BB) took care of business on the mound while Calilao (3/4, HR, 2 RBI, 2 R) powered UF at the plate.

Miami leads the all-time series 130-124-1 against Florida, but the Gators are 76-48-1 in Gainesville and 12-3 overall in the teams’ last 15 meetings. Among the six straight series wins by UF, three were in Gainesville with two in Coral Gables with one in postseason competition. Florida is also 8-2 in its last 10 against Miami.

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