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Three up, three down: FSU takes down UCLA to open regional play

FSU grinds out the upset!

Jaime Ferrer
Charles Mays

Auburn, AL - The Seminoles scored in the first and Parker Messick pitched five strong innings to give FSU an opening game win in the Auburn regional, 5-3.

Florida State started the game off right with a two out double from Jamie Ferrer and single from James Tibbs in the first inning to score the first run of the game. The ‘Noles would go on to load the bases via a HBP and error but couldn’t plate another run. After a leadoff single in the bottom of the first Parker Messick and Bruin pitcher Max Rajcic wouldn’t allow another base runner until the bottom of the fourth and no runs.

In the top of the fifth, the offenses started coming awake. Colton Vincent singled to left field and moved up to second on a wild pitch and Tyler Martin walk. Both runners were brought home on a Jordan Carrion triple down the right-field line. Martin was able to get home due to some aggressive base running and a poor throw from the right field but the same could not be said for Carrion. Logan Lacey flew out to right field on the next at-bat and Carrion was thrown out at home. Replay seemed to show that he was safe but the review did not go the way of the Seminoles ending the inning with a 3-0 score.

Messick started the bottom of the inning with two outs but ran into trouble. He gave up a solo home run to Carson Yates. UCLA would follow with two singles sandwiching a walk to score another run. Messick would get the next batter to end his day.

FSU struck back in the next inning by putting two runners in scoring position after a Tibbs walk and Brett Roberts double. Reese Albert got an RBI by grounding out to first but Lacey, once again, could not bring across Roberts as he grounded out to third and Roberts was thrown out at home. UCLA had the infield in and Roberts had to go on the ground ball. Had he tried to go back to the base he would have been easily tagged out.

Wyatt Crowell took over to start the bottom of the sixth and just didn’t have his control. He loaded the bases on walks but he did mix in a three-pitch strikeout and a flyout. After a mound visit, Mike Martin Jr would stick with Crowell, who would reward him with a ground out to end the inning.

FSU would threaten again in the bottom of the seventh as Ferrer lead off the inning with a double and moved to third on an aggressive tag up on a fly ball caught by the second baseman in short right field but got stuck at third. Roberts flew out to short center field and Albert struck out swinging.

Jonah Scolaro relieved Crowell to start the eighth and hit a batter with his first pitch. A single followed by a sack bunt put runners on second and third for the Bruins with one out and ended Scolaro’s short outing at just nine pitches. Davie Hare came on in relief and immediately got a strike out but a wild pitch to Yates brought the score to 4-3. Hare would finish off Yates to end the inning.

Lacey started off the ninth with a line drive to right field that held up for an out and after two balls Toral added an insurance run with his 15th home run of the year, this time a rocket over the right-field fence.

Hare would get the job done in the ninth working around a two-out error to close out the win, 5-3.

Game Thread

Box Score

Three up

Parker Messick looks more like himself

Messick’s line of five innings pitched, two runs, four strike outs and two walks doesn’t look great but until the fifth inning he was dominate. UCLA is a talented team and not one that’s going to strike out a lot but Messick induced a lot of weak contact. All in all he ended the game with a quality start and handed his pen the game with the lead and you can’t ask much more of a pitcher than that.

Ferrer provides the spark

FSU’s super freshman showed out in today’s game. His hustle in the first stretched a single into a double, allowing him to later score. He would double again off the left field wall and then tag on shallow fly to right field which almost led to him scoring again. He continues to be one of FSU’s most consistent offensive threat.

Hare gets the save

Davis Hare came in with runners on second and third in the eighth and one out and only allowed one to score. He struck out catcher Darius Perry and got Yates to line out. He did allow a runner to advance by throwing a wild pitch but that was the only blemish on his day. Vincent had a good read on the ball but there was just too much English on it and it bounced away. Hare finished off the game with a solid ninth inning pitching around an error.

Three down

The bottom of the lineup prevents the blowout

The bottom of FSU’s lineup certainly had chances to blow this game open early and often but couldn’t come through. The sixth (Albert), seventh (Lacey) and eighth (Toral) spots in the lineup accounted for no hits, five runners left on base, two strike outs and one RBI. As a team FSU had six runners LOB and three strike outs. In a season of missed chances the seniors on this team, once again, participated in too many missed chances. Toral did salvage the day with a rocket of a homerun to right field in the ninth.

The pen escapes

Like the entire team the Florida State pen has been up and down all year. After a few months of very dominate pitching Wyatt Crowell gave up a walk off home run in North Carolina but bounced back with a good outing against Virginia. Crowell did pitch two innings of no hit ball but did walk three while striking out just two. He went to a full count on four of the seven batters he faced. Jonah Scolaro was less impressive as he only lasted nine pitches giving up a single and a HBP before giving way to Hare.

Too many errors

FSU hasn’t had a good fielding team in a while and this year’s team is probably better than it’s been in a bit fielding is still a weak point. Thankfully it didn’t hurt the ‘Noles today but at some point it’ll bite them again. In the fourth inning Roberts had a bad throw for what would have been the second out. Vincent followed that up by throwing out the base runner, Michael Curialle, during the next at bat. In the ninth Lacey fielded what should have been the final out of the game but threw high to first resulting in the tying run coming to the plate. While neither error resulted in a run they are the type of plays that cause you to lose a game.

Up next: FSU will take on the winner of Auburn and SE Louisiana tomorrow at 7 PM.