Kent State Edges Top-Ranked Florida, 5-4
After taking a 4-0 lead, the Golden Flashes hold on to eliminate the top-seeded Gators.
The Kent State baseball team (47-19) fended off a late Florida rally Monday evening in its elimination game at the 2012 College World Series at TD Ameritrade Park, as the Golden Flashes tallied a 5-4 victory over the Gators to remain alive in the national championship.
"Kent State did a little more today, and they deserved to win," said Florida head coach Kevin O'Sullivan in the post-game press conference.
Kent State's victory eliminates Florida (47-20), who entered the 2012 NCAA Baseball Championship as the No. 1 seed.
After a three-run second inning aided Kent State in taking a 4-0 lead, Florida answered with a run in the top of the third inning. Kent State added another run in the fourth, but Florida pulled within one run after scoring once in the sixth and twice in the seventh.
In the top of the ninth inning, Florida worked Kent State's pitchers, and after back-to-back walks to lead off the inning, the Gators sacrificed both runners to scoring position – the possible game-tying and game-leading runs.
After a hit batsman loaded the bases and elevated the tension, Kent State pitcher Josh Pierce got Florida's Casey Turgeon to strike out swinging and Justin Shafer to pop up to T.J. Sutton in right field on the ensuing pitch to end the game.
Jimmy Rider led the way with a 2-for-5 day with three runs scored, while George Roberts was 2-for-4 with a pair of RBIs.
Ryan Bores' six innings of work earned him his 10th victory of the season, while Pierce tallied the save.
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