6 BITS: Florida CB Hargreaves props up Wilson; Calathes to Greece; Gators add baseball talent

1 » When not talking about himself (let’s face it, those were the questions he was asked), Florida Gators junior All-American cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III spent time at the 2015 SEC Media Days on Monday propping up his teammates. Hargreaves believes the Gators will be the best secondary in the nation next season – and for good reason – but thinks that an overlooked member of that unit may be the reason why it could go from great to dominant as the year progresses.

“He reminds me of a Brandon Browner-type corner or an Antonio Cromartie-type of corner – one of those big lanky cornerbacks,” Hargreaves told FoxSports.com’s Bruce Feldman of Florida sophomore Quincy Wilson. “That’s his game, how he plays. He plays big and physical. I want y’all to watch him on Saturdays this fall. It’s remarkable (how much better) he’s gotten this offseason. Him and also Jalen Tabor, they’ve really grown and matured. They’re ready to play. They understand.”

Continue Reading » 6 BITS: Florida CB Hargreaves props up Wilson; Calathes to Greece; Gators add baseball talent

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Takeaways: Gators’ bats go cold, Florida falls into CWS loser’s bracket after 1-0 loss to Virginia

By Andrew Olson – OnlyGators.com baseball writer

The Virginia Cavaliers shut down and shut out No. 4 Florida Gators baseball (50-17) on Monday in the second round of the 2015 College World Series, ending UF’s 10-game winning streak and handing it a loss (1-0) for the first time in the 2015 NCAA Tournament.

Runs were hard to come by for both the Gators and Cavaliers late Monday in a game that did not start until 10:09 p.m. ET. Sophomore left-handed pitcher A.J. Puk (5.1 IP, 4 H, ER, 3 BB, 5 K) allowed only one hit through his first five innings but ran into trouble in the sixth, giving up three straight singles to load the bases. Junior right-hand pitcher Taylor Lewis (1.1 IP, H, 2 BB) forced a fly out that resulted in a sacrifice run, the game’s only score, to cross the plate.

Virginia LHP Brandon Waddell worked Florida, retiring 12 straight batters while holding the Gators to only two hits into the eighth inning. The Gators had runners at the corners with no outs in that frame but saw RHP Josh Sborz (2.0 IP) work his way out of the jam.

Florida, which accumulated 98 runs over its 10-game win streak, went a combined 2-for-31 at the plate. The Gators’ 1-5 hitters combined to go 0-for-17 with two walks.

Here are three takeaways from the UF’s excruciating loss:
Continue Reading » Takeaways: Gators’ bats go cold, Florida falls into CWS loser’s bracket after 1-0 loss to Virginia

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No. 4 Florida Gators baseball routs Florida State on the way to 2015 College World Series

By Andrew Olson – OnlyGators.com baseball writer

For the first time since 2012, No. 4 Florida Gators baseball is going back to Omaha, Nebraska, after earning a spot in the 2015 College World Series on Saturday night. Florida (49-16) overcame an early two-run deficit to earn an 11-4 victory over the Florida State Seminoles at McKethan Stadium in Gainesville, Florida.

UF outscored FSU 24-9 over during the 2015 Gainesville Super Regionals, pulling off a 13-5 win on Friday night.

Freshman catcher JJ Schwarz (3/4, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 3 R) led the way on offense for the Gators with two deep blasts to left field. Schwarz, Florida’s rookie phenom, owns a new school record with 18 home runs during his freshman campaign. Schwarz has hit a blazing hot 22-for-39 (.564) in postseason play, going 12-for-20 (.600) in five 2015 NCAA Tournament games. If Schwarz can keep his hot streak up next week in Omaha, UF will be tough to beat.

This year’s berth marks Florida’s ninth trip to the College World Series, its fourth in eight seasons under head coach Kevin O’Sullivan (2010-12). UF will face No. 5 Miami in opening-round action; the Gators took two-of-three games from the Canes in Gainesville from Feb. 20-22.

Continue Reading » No. 4 Florida Gators baseball routs Florida State on the way to 2015 College World Series

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Takeaways: Florida routs FSU, one win from CWS

By Andrew Olson – OnlyGators.com baseball writer

No. 4 Florida Gators baseball (48-16) opened the 2015 Gainesville Super Regional on Friday with a 13-5 thumping of the rival Florida State Seminoles (44-20). The Gators are now one win away from returning to the College World Series for the first time since 2012.

Florida scored early and often in the game. A four-run first inning for the Gators gave sophomore right-handed pitcher Logan Shore (5.2 IP, 4 H, 2 BB, 5 K) all the cushion he needed. Senior third baseman Josh Tobias (2/5, 3 RBI, R) and freshmen catcher Mike Rivera (1/3, 3 RBI, R) led UF, while freshman C JJ Schwarz (2/3, HR, 2 RBI, 3 R, 2 RBI) hit the team’s only homer, a solo shot to deep left in the fifth inning. Schwarz is now batting 19-for-35 (.543) in postseason play.

Continue Reading » Takeaways: Florida routs FSU, one win from CWS

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Takeaways: No. 4 Florida Gators baseball tames USF Bulls 8-1, moves to Gainesville Regional final

By Andrew Olson – OnlyGators.com baseball writer

No. 4 Florida Gators baseball (46-16) advanced to the finals of the Gainesville Regional portion of the 2015 NCAA Tournament with an 8-2 win over the South Florida Bulls on Saturday evening. As such, the Gators are now one win away from hosting a Super Regional as part of the Round of 16.

Despite being the regional hosts and a top national seed, Florida played Saturday as the visiting team in McKethan Stadium. USF threatened early, taking advantage of a lead off walk in the bottom of the first inning to load the bases with two outs, but sophomore left-handed pitcher A.J. Puk (7.0 IP, 4 H, BB, 8 K) notched a scoreless frame on 29 pitches and got into a groove, at one point retiring 14 consecutive batters.

UF sophomore center fielder Buddy Reed (2/5, HR, 2 RBI, R) broke the scoring ice with a two-run shot in the top of the third. His effort was matched by junior left fielder Harrison Bader (2/5, HR, 2 RBI, R), who cranked one out in the Gators’ next offensive frame.

Sophomore LHP Kirby Snead (1.0 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, K) took over for Puk in the bottom of the eighth inning, and junior right-handed pitcher Taylor Lewis (1.0 IP, H) tied the game up.

Here are three takeaways from Florida’s decisive victory:

Continue Reading » Takeaways: No. 4 Florida Gators baseball tames USF Bulls 8-1, moves to Gainesville Regional final

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Takeaways: No. 4 Florida Gators baseball routs Florida A&M 19-0 in Gainesville Regional opener

By Andrew Olson – OnlyGators.com baseball writer

No. 4 Florida Gators baseball wiped the floor with the Florida A&M Rattlers on Friday, using a 19-0 win to propel itself into the winner’s bracket of the Gainesville Regional portion of the 2015 NCAA Tournament.

Florida took a 1-0 lead in the second inning and never looked back with sophomore right-handed pitcher Logan Shore on the mound. Shore has been the victim of a lack of run support at times in the 2015 campaign, but the UF bats were plenty active Friday night at McKethan Stadium.

Eleven different Gators hitters recorded an RBI in Florida’s first NCAA Tournament win since June 10, 2012, snapping a six-game losing streak dating back to the 2012 College World Series.

Here are three takeaways from Florida’s blowout victory:

Continue Reading » Takeaways: No. 4 Florida Gators baseball routs Florida A&M 19-0 in Gainesville Regional opener

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Takeaways: Florida Gators baseball earns sweet revenge vs. Arkansas, set to face LSU

By Andrew Olson – OnlyGators.com baseball writer

After a heartbreaking loss Thursday morning, No. 4 seed Florida Gators baseball (42-16) got sweet revenge on the No. 5 seed Arkansas Razorbacks with a 10-0 run-rule win in seven innings Friday night in Hoover, Alabama.

Sophomore left-handed pitcher A.J. Puk (7.0 IP, 3 H, 3 BB, 11 K) was locked in from the get go and received an early six-run cushion from his teammates as the Gators cruised to the semifinals of the 2015 SEC Tournament.

Here are three takeaways from Florida’s big win:

Continue Reading » Takeaways: Florida Gators baseball earns sweet revenge vs. Arkansas, set to face LSU

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Takeaways: Florida seniors shine vs. Auburn, set Gators baseball up for postseason, national seed

By Andrew Olson – OnlyGators.com baseball writer

No. 7 Florida Gators baseball (40-15, 19-11 SEC) closed out the 2015 regular season with a series win over the Auburn Tigers. It marked the fourth series in a row in which Florida dropped its opener (4-1), the third straight in which it recovered to win the next two games (4-3, 3-1).

UF ultimately finished in fourth place in the league behind LSU (20-8), Vanderbilt (20-10) and Texas A&M (18-10). Nevertheless, the Gators are well-positioned to earn a national seed and host a regional in the 2015 NCAA Tournament due to their high RPI (No. 6), nonconference strength of schedule (No. 13) and recent series win over VU.

The Aggies (No. 7 RPI) and Commodores (No. 11 RPI) will both be entering the 2015 SEC Tournament with the goal of jumping Florida in the national seed pecking order.

Here are five takeaways from the final series of the 2015 regular season:

Continue Reading » Takeaways: Florida seniors shine vs. Auburn, set Gators baseball up for postseason, national seed

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