Top seed Florida rallies to knock out South Carolina in SEC tournament
HOOVER, Ala. -- Bobby Poyner threw five shutout innings and Taylor Gushue tied the game with a two-run single in the third inning to propel Florida to a 7-2 win against South Carolina on Thursday. With the win, the Gators stayed alive in the 2014 SEC tournament .
After falling behind early for the second day in a row, the Gators used a three-run third inning to take the lead and the pitching staff shut down South Carolina for the rest of the day, allowing just two hits over the final six innings with no runs.
The Gamecocks got on the board first in the second inning, plating a run after a pair of doubles. They extended their lead in the third with a home run by Kyle Martin.
In the bottom half of the third, Florida’s Casey Turgeon started a two-out rally with an infield single to second base. An error and hit batter loaded the bases for Gushue, who stroked a single up the middle to plate two runs. Braden Mattson followed with a bunt single that scored Harrison Bader from third base to give the Gators a 3-2 lead.
Florida added another pair of runs in the fourth inning. After starting the inning with back-to-back walks, Turgeon hit a one-out single to right field to score Justin Shafer. Richie Martin singled through the left side, bringingJosh Tobias home for a 5-2 Gators lead.
Tobias provided an insurance run in the sixth inning, hitting his third home run of the season into the bullpen in left field. The Gators final run came in the eighth, as Turgeon singled for the third time on the day and Shafer scored after he got on base with a single.
Starter A.J. Puk pitched 4.0 innings and allowed two runs. He also had a single after entering the game as the designated hitter in the fifth inning.