Jacksonville Sports Day

No. 5 Florida Edges No. 8 Miami, 4-3, on Walk-Off Single by Reed

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Sophomore Buddy Reed delivered a two-out single in the bottom of the ninth to score senior Josh Tobias from second base as No. 5 Florida (5-0) defeated No. 8 Miami (4-2), 4-3, on Friday night at McKethan Stadium. Junior right-hander Taylor Lewis (1-0) picked up his first win as a Gator by stranding a Hurricane on third to complete the eighth and then retired the side in order in the ninth before Reed’s heroics.

Tobias was hit by a pitch from freshman Michael Mediavilla (0-1) to start the final frame, was sacrificed to second base on a bunt by sophomore Ryan Larson and came home with the decisive run on Reed’s base-hit into left center field with two strikes. The Gators had tied the game in the sixth inning on a two-run single with two down by freshman Mike Rivera and used Reed’s game-winning hit for their first walk-off victory since April 27, 2014 (Missouri).

UF had grabbed a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning when freshman Jesse Lepore committed a balk to bring home junior Richie Martin (1-for-3, two runs). Martin had opened with a base-hit up the middle and junior Harrison Bader was hit by a pitch, prompting a pitching change. Lepore took over for redshirt junior Ryan Otero (3.0 IP, 2 H) and a fly ball by freshman JJ Schwarz had advanced Martin to third.

Miami seized a 3-1 lead in the sixth on a passed ball, an RBI single by junior David Thompson (2-for-4) and a wild pitch. Junior Ricky Eusebio led off with a single into left field before senior left-hander Bobby Poyner matched his career high with his seventh strikeout. A double to right field by sophomore Willie Abreu (2-for-4) brought redshirt sophomore Mike Vinson into the contest with a pair of runners in scoring position. After Eusebio came in on a passed ball, Thompson sliced a single through the left side to move the Hurricanes in front. Thompson went to second on a balk, took third on a grounder and scored on a wild pitch by sophomore Kirby Snead.

Rivera countered with a game-tying, two-run single with two down in UF’s sixth. Reed (3-for-5) led off with a single and Martin walked before sophomore Cooper Hammond replaced Lepore (2.0 IP, 1 H, 2 R). After the Gators executed a double steal, the Hurricanes’ reliever had back-to-back strikeouts. Sophomore A.J. Puk was walked intentionally to fill the bags and Rivera responded with a knock into right field to plate Reed and Martin.

Although sophomore Zack Collins singled with one down in the eighth off of freshman Alex Faedo, he was thrown out at the plate on a textbook relay from Reed-Martin-Rivera on a deep ball into right center field by Abreu. With Abreu advancing to third on the relay home as the potential go-ahead run, Lewis had Thompson fly out to preserve the stalemate.

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