June 5, 2010

Courtesy Florida Atlantic Athletics

GAINESVILLE, FL - With their backs against the wall, the Florida Atlantic University baseball team responded on Saturday. In an elimination game on day two of the Gainesville Regional, FAU recorded a season high 18 hits in a 12-6 win over Bethune-Cookman at McKethan Stadium.

The Owls (36-23) got off to a good start in the top of the first after three straight two-out base hits gave FAU a 1-0 lead. Eddie Cassidy finished off the rally with a clean single up the middle that scored Andy Mee.

Trailing 5-0, the Wildcats (35-22) broke through in the third with three runs off FAU starter Ryan Garton. All of the runs were earned off Garton, who allowed five hits in the inning.

Despite the hiccup, the right-hander settled down and gave FAU seven quality frames while earning his seventh victory of the year. Garton (7-3) allowed five runs off 11 hits with two walks and five strikeouts.

FAU tacked on two runs in both the seventh and eighth innings to pull away late. The big blow came in the eighth when Anthony Mesa doubled home two runs with the bases loaded to put the game out of reach at 12-5.

Mesa and Raymond Church each hit solo home runs and Dan Scheffler added three hits as every FAU starter with the exception of Mike Albaladejo recorded at least one base hit.

Albaladejo's career-long hitting streak was halted at nine games after the catcher went 0-for-4 with a walk and a run scored in the victory.

Mesa and Sean Bukovich also paced FAU with three RBI each. As a team, FAU broke a program NCAA Regional record with four doubles and tied a regional record with 18 hits.

The victory also earns FAU another game in the Gainesville Regional on Sunday in another elimination affair. The Owls will take on the loser of the Florida-Oregon State matchup that will be played later this evening.

FAU fell to Oregon State 6-4 on Friday and also lost to Florida 7-3 back on May 12 in Gainesville. First pitch on Sunday is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. from Alfred A. McKethan Stadium at Perry Field.

If FAU wins on Sunday afternoon, then they will play another elimination game against the winner of the Florida-Oregon State matchup at 7 p.m.

Both of the games can be heard live on www.fausports.com.