By Andrew Olson – OnlyGators.com Contributor
There is plenty of baseball left to be played in the Gainesville Regional at McKethan Stadium – and for that matter the entire 2014 NCAA Tournament – but none of it will include the Florida Gators.
The top seed in its regional and No. 2 overall team in the event, Florida (40-23) was eliminated from postseason competition by the regional third seed North Carolina Tar Heels (35-26) on Saturday, dropping the contest by a score of 5-2.
The Gators likely felt like they were experiencing déjà vu in Saturday’s game as, for the second-straight day, UF dealt with a rain delay in excess of three hours.
This time, the game was halted in the third inning with junior left-handed pitcher Bobby Poyner (2.0 IP, 5 H, 2 R, ER, 2 K) on the mound. Poyner did not return after the delay, leaving freshman lefty Kirby Snead (1.0 IP, 4 H, 3 ER) with two on and no outs.
Just like Friday night, Florida’s opponent returned from the delay with gusto and a major offensive output. North Carolina teed off on Snead for four hits, taking a 5-0 lead that proved to be insurmountable for the Gators.
Florida chipped away at North Carolina’s lead late in the game but failed to put together a multi-run inning to give it a legitimate fighting chance.