Florida State (43-18) lost to Samford by a score of 7-6 on Friday night. The Seminoles will now have to win four straight games to advance, a feat they accomplished last year on their way to a College World Series.
- The bats battled back after they struggled through the first four innings. Trailing by five runs entering the fifth, Drew Mendoza was hit-by-pitch and Reese Albert singled to set the table for the bottom of the order. A single by J.C. Flowers and triple by Mike Salvatore cut the lead to 6-4 before Rhett Aplin’s 2-out single cut the deficit to one run.
- Florida State used their four best bullpen arms on Friday night, so they might have limited availability on Saturday. The good news for the ‘Noles is that their best chance for an extended outing by a starter comes from Drew Parrish. The sophomore has pitched at least seven innings in six of his last eight starts, which included a complete-game gem against North Carolina State last week.
- The bullpen arms of Conor Grady, C.J. Van Eyk, and Jonah Scolaro kept Florida State in the game. The trio of freshmen combined to pitch 4.2 innings, issued five walks, struck out six batters and allowed two hits. The lone run allowed came in the 7th inning when Van Eyk balked with the bases loaded.
- Cole Sands pitched only 2.2 innings before he left with right shoulder tightness. It appeared that the junior right-hander was bothered by it from the start of the game as he did not have the control that was evident in his last three games, most notably the 11 strikeout appearance last week against Clemson. Before his departure the right-hander pitched the first two innings unscathed but with two outs in the third he allowed a double before Samford’s best hitter, Brooks Carlson, homered over the left field wall.
- This team has been mistake prone all season and tonight it was on full display. With one out in the fourth inning, and runners on 1st and 2nd, Clayton Kwiatkowski threw a pitch up and away that got past Cal Raleigh and all the way to the backstop. While officially ruled a wild pitch it was an extremely lazy effort from the All-ACC First Team catcher that allowed the runners to move up. Those runners would score two batters later on an infield single by Samford. Rafael Bournigal committed two errors in the fifth inning, three for the game, while Kwiatkowski hit a batter on a 1-2 count as well. Samford plated three runs in the inning and jumped out to a 6-1 lead over the host Seminoles.
- Florida State finished the night with seven hits, unfortunately five of those hits came in the 4-run fifth inning. Although they were given six free passes (3 HBP and 3 BB) the lineup struck out seven times. The Seminoles needed to score every opportunity they had tonight in order to win and that is something they were not able to do.
With Friday night’s loss the Seminoles move into the regional loser’s bracket and will face Mississippi State Saturday at noon. The forecast for tomorrow in Tallahassee calls for a 20% chance of rain most of the day.