Baseball Weekend Review
Randall leads Gators to sweep of LSU; Emporia State still perfect
• The No. 1 Florida Gators stretched their winning streak to eight games with their fourth consecutive victory against a top-10 opponent as they swept No. 7 LSU with a 7-3 come-from-behind win on Sunday. It was the first time in school history Florida swept LSU in Baton Rouge, and the first time the Tigers were swept by a Southeastern Conference opponent since 2006. The Gators tied the 1952 club for the most wins (18) in their first 20 games. Florida used a dramatic ninth-inning comeback for a 5-4 win on Friday, while sophomore Hudson Randall led the pitching staff to a combined 1-0 shutout of the Tigers on Sunday.
• No. 13 Texas A&M claimed three victories against nationally-ranked foes last week, capped off by a 5-2 victory against No. 2 Oklahoma to take the weekend series on Sunday. The Aggies notched a 2-0 victory against No. 18 Fullerton on Tuesday, and then rebounded from Friday’s 1-0 loss to Oklahoma by combining for 16 runs on 30 hits to win the next two contests against the Sooners. The Texas A&M pitching staff held the Sooners to just four runs on the weekend, lowering its team ERA to 1.68.
• No. 10 Texas overcame an early deficit for the second consecutive game, outlasting Kansas State, 6-5, in 14 innings to sweep the Wildcats in the Big 12 Conference opening series for both squads. The Longhorns are the only league team that started conference play with a 3-0 record this weekend.
• Auburn’s Casey McElroy provided the offensive spark for the Tigers in a series victory against No. 9 Arkansas to open Southeastern Conference action over the weekend. McElroy batted .615 with two home runs and six RBI for the weekend, including four RBI in the 8-7 victory against the Razorbacks on Sunday.
• Mississippi State ended a 12-game losing streak to No. 2 Vanderbilt with a 9-8 comeback victory against the Commodores on Sunday as the Bulldogs avoided the sweep. Vandy shutout MSU in the first two games of the series to stretch its winning streak to 12 games before the loss to the Bulldogs.
• Texas Tech notched a series win at Baylor for the first time since 2001 behind an offense that posted 51 hits in three games last weekend. The Red Raiders claimed a 10-6 win in 10 innings on Sunday to earn their first Big 12 opening series win on the road since 1997.
• No. 1 Emporia State remained perfect on the season with a four-game sweep of Southwest Baptist, highlighted by David Allbritton’s RBI-single that propelled the Hornets to a walk-off 7-6 victory in the third game of the series. The Hornets are on top of the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association standings with a 12-0 mark, and are off to their best start since 1972.
• Barry University is off to a 6-0 start in Sunshine State Conference play for the first time in school history following a sweep of Eckerd. Matt Petty batted .500 with five runs scored, two homers and six RBI in the series, which including a 20-4 win in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader.
• Angelo State extended its winning streak to 10 games with a 6-4 defeat of No. 13 St. Mary’s (Texas) to open the series, but Rattlers turned the tables and took the next three games of the series, holding the Rams to just one run during the stretch. St. Mary’s head coach Charlie Migl collected his 900th career win in the series finale – a 4-0 victory against ASU. Migl owns a 900-419 record in 25 years as the Rattlers’ head coach, and is just the 15th coach in NCAA Division II history to achieve the mark.
• No. 16 Armstrong Atlantic State swept Lander in Peach Belt Conference play, taking over first place in the league’s East Division from the Bearcats. The Pirates have won five consecutive games and seven of their last eight games.
• No. 4 West Florida extended its winning streak to 10 with a three-game sweep of West Georgia in Gulf South Conference action, improving to 5-1 in league play to remain in first place in the East Division. Daniel Vargas-Vila struck out seven batters in his third complete game this season as the Argonauts won, 8-1, on Sunday.
• No. 13 Southern Connecticut remained flawless on the year, downing American International in a doubleheader on Saturday, to improve to 15-0 on the season. The Owls are one win short of tying the program record for the best start to a season.
• East Stroudsburg took three of four games from No. 22 Kutztown as the Warriors won a series against the Golden Bears for the first time since 2000. The Warriors are 16-4 – the program’s best 20-game start in school history.
• After starting the season 2-5, defending NCAA champion Southern Indiana has won 10 straight, including a 4-0 mark in Great Lakes Valley Conference play.
• Baldwin-Wallace right-hander Josh Scott tossed a seven-inning no hitter in the Yellow Jackets’ 12-0 defeat of Ohio Christian on March 19. He struck out six batters and did not issue a walk in the contest.
• Adrian College knocked off No. 1 Heidelberg, 2-1, in 10 innings on March 19 for the Bulldogs’ second win over a top-10 team this season. The ‘Berg bounced back on Sunday to beat Adrian, 2-1, behind 10 strikeouts by starting pitcher Brian Koehl.
• No. 2 Shenandoah stayed perfect with its fourth consecutive USA South Conference sweep as Clint DeHaven keyed a five-run rally in the ninth inning with a walk-off RBI-single.
• No. 15 St. Thomas (Minn.) dropped its fourth consecutive game to open the year, falling to No. 6 UW-Whitewater, 7-6, in this weekend’s only Division III match-up between nationally-ranked foes on March 20.
• No. 9 Christopher Newport University squeaked out a 3-2 victory against North Carolina Wesleyan to run its winning streak to 22 games on March 20. Senior Sean Chitsaz won his sixth game of the season, striking out seven batters in seven innings pitched. He lowered his season ERA to 1.40 as the Captains improved to 7-0 in USA South action.