Tallahassee, FL- Florida State baseball topped the Samford Bulldogs 7-1 on Saturday to clinch their second series of the season. The ‘Noles were led by their starting pitcher for the second straight day. Bryce Hubbart tossed six scoreless innings while striking out nine bulldogs. The offense produced five two-out, run-producing base knocks as five different Seminoles drove in a run. Wyatt Crowell and Jonah Scolaro combined to toss three innings of one-run ball to close out the win.
FSU: 7 runs / 10 hits / 3 errors / 9 LOB
Samford: 1 run / 5 hits / 0 errors / 8 LOB
WP: Bryce Hubbart (2-0)
- Hubbart battles for six scoreless frames: Bryce Hubbart wasn’t as sharp or dominant as he was on opening day, but he battled for six scoreless frames against the Bulldogs. The southpaw had just one perfect inning but he stranded seven Samford runners on base. In the third inning, he stranded two runners with a weak pop-up to third. Two innings later, he stranded two more runners with another pop out to third. In the sixth, Samford put a runner on third with one out. Hubbart induced a weak fly-out to right field and struck out a batter to leave the runner standing on third. The fastball, which picked up 23 swings-and-misses in his first start, wasn’t as unhittable today but he used the new slider often to get swings-and-misses. Hubbart finished with a final line of 6 IP, 4 H, 1 BB, 9 K, 0 R, 91 pitches (74% strikes). Through two starts, he’s yet to allow a run, has only walked one batter and struck out 22.
- Perry makes things happen early: The Seminoles posted a run in the first two innings against Samford starter Blake Bortake. Isaiah Perry, making his second start of the season, led off the game with a walk. Despite getting a ball off the end of the bat, Alex Toral skied a double off the right-field fence for a double. The speedy Perry came all the way around the bases to score the first run and give Toral his 10th RBI of the season. Just like Perry did in the first inning, Jordan Carrion led off the second with a walk. A couple of groundouts moved him to third. Perry scorched a grounder through the left side of the infield for a two-out RBI. The outfielder reached base safely in each of his first eight plate appearances of the season after the RBI single.
- Offense breaks out late behind timely hits: James Tibbs led off the sixth inning with a walk. It was the fourth time that FSU led off an inning with a free pass on Saturday. A bunt and a grounder moved Tibbs to third with two outs. Fellow freshman Treyton Rank fouled off four straight pitches before lining a ball to the opposite field for FSU’s second two-out RBI. Reese Albert, who pinch-hit for Perry, followed with a line-drive single to center. Rank, who was running on the pitch, was able to score as the center fielder mishandled the ball in the outfield. Rank’s run extended FSU’s lead to 4-0 after six. The two-out runs were crucial for FSU as Samford led off the seventh inning with a solo home run for their first run of the weekend.
The Seminoles tacked on more insurance in the bottom of the eighth. Tibbs got the ‘Noles started with a one-out single, which extended his hitting streak to six games. Carrion executed the hit-and-run as he grounded a ball through a vacated spot at shortstop to put runners on the corners with one out. Tibbs came across the plate on an RBI groundout from Colton Vincent. Rank followed with his second two-out RBI as he shot a line drive down the RF line for FSU’s second triple of the day. Albert followed with another two-out knock as he doubled off the top of the RF fence to put FSU up 7-1.
- Unlucky bounce in the fifth: FSU put together good ABs early in the game, but couldn’t put up a crooked number to extend their lead over their bulldogs. The Seminoles couldn’t get any bounces to go their way, especially in the fifth inning. Brett Roberts laced a ball down the right-field line for a two-out triple, the first of his FSU career. Jaime Ferrer looked to have an RBI-double off the bat, but a hard-hit grounder hit the leg of Roberts. With Roberts barely in fair territory, the hard grounder went down as an out to end the inning.
- Errors on the infield: Early in the season, FSU has had much-improved defense on the infield. Today, the infield defense left a bit to be desired. After not committing an error for the prior three games, the ‘Noles had three today. In the third inning, Carrion cleanly fielded a grounder and tossed to second base for what looked like the third out of the inning. Rank wasn’t expecting the throw to second and didn’t have his foot on the base, which extended the inning. In the sixth, Roberts charged in on a slow roller and fielded the ball cleanly, but Toral wasn’t able to reel in a throw a bit up the line. In the seventh, a grounder to Rank took a funky hop on the second baseman and extended the inning.
Up next: Game three of the series will be at 1:00 PM tomorrow. Ross Dunn will be on the mound for the ‘Noles.