The fifth-ranked Florida State baseball team had all the answers in Sunday afternoon’s 16-5 series-clinching victory over No. 4 Louisville at Dick Howser Stadium.
The Seminoles (22-8, 9-2 ACC) scored five runs in the third inning, three in the fourth and six in the fifth in the deciding game against the Cardinals (24-7, 10-5 ACC) to maintain the top spot in the ACC Atlantic Division at the midway point in the conference schedule. Sunday’s game marked the most runs allowed by Louisville since suffering a 16-3 at Arizona on June 3, 2012 in the NCAA Tucson Regional.
“Losing is part of this game but you don’t like it when you don’t play well and we obviously didn’t play well today. You have to learn from it and get ready to play good baseball on Tuesday night and that’s all we can do. You can’t make excuses, you can’t blame people and we can’t feel sorry for ourselves,” said Louisville head coach Dan McDonnell. “Hopefully, that’s the last time it happens to us this season but if you play this game long enough, these kinds of days will happen to you. The good news is we play five games this week with four of them at home and one against our rival, so there’s no time to hang our heads. We have a big week ahead of us.”
Outfielder Corey Ray served as one of the few highlights for the Cardinals on this day at the ballpark as the junior was 2-for-4 with a double, one RBI, one stolen base and two runs scored. SophomoresBrendan McKay and Blake Tiberi added two hits each, including doubles for both corner infielders.
Florida State gained command in Sunday’s game with its five-run third inning against Louisville righty Kyle Funkhouser. After a wild pitch plated Ben DeLuzio for the first run of the inning, back-to-back walks loaded the bases before Dylan Busby sent a 0-1 pitch over the left field wall for his fourth home run of the season and the 5-0 lead.
The Seminoles added to the cushion with a trio of runs in the fourth inning. Jackson Lueck plated the first run when he scored from third after the Cardinals booted a pickoff chance at second base. The final two runs of the inning were sent home on bases loaded walks to John Sansone and Busby for the 8-0 advantage.
Louisville broke through for its first runs of the day in the fifth inning on a RBI double from Ray to score redshirt freshman Drew Ellis and a RBI single to center by sophomore Colby Fitch to send Ray home. However, any thoughts of a comeback for the Cardinals halted in the bottom of the fifth as the Seminoles score six runs on six hits for a 14-2 lead. The scoring for the home club in the inning included an RBI single by Taylor Walls, a two-run single from Sansone, a two-run double by Cal Raleigh and a RBI double by Darren Miller.
Tiberi drove McKay home with a RBI double in the top of the sixth for Louisville, while Walls answered with a RBI double for Florida State in the bottom of the inning. The Cardinals added two more runs in the seventh as freshman second baseman Devin Mann connected for a RBI single to plate junior outfielder Logan Taylor before Ray scored on a double-play. FSU scored its final run in the bottom of the seventh on a bases loaded walk by Hank Truluck.
Funkhouser suffered the loss for the Cardinals and dropped to 3-3 on the season after allowing eight runs on six hits in 3.1 innings, while each of Louisville’s four pitchers on Sunday surrendered runs. Jim Voyles was credited with the win for Seminoles and moved to 4-0 on the season despite allowing two runs on four hits in two innings of relief.
Up next, the Cardinals begin a five-game week with a visit from Western Kentucky on Cancer Awareness Night at Jim Patterson Stadium on Tuesday at 6 p.m., ET.