The Florida Gators (12-6) defeated the Arkansas Razorbacks (8-6) in their SEC opener Friday night at McKethan Stadium in Gainesville. It was the Gators’ sixth win in a row and fifth in a row at home.
Freshman Logan Shore (1-1) earned his first collegiate win for Florida as he gave up only one run on seven hits in 6.1 innings pitched. He tallied five strikeouts before turning the ball over to the bullpen, where Bobby Poyner and Aaron Rhodes gave up no hits over the final three innings with Rhodes picking up his second save of the season.
Florida scored early in the first inning when shortstop Richie Martin singled to right field. He would advance to second on a sacrifice bunt by junior Casey Turgeon and then to third on a balk by Arkansas starting pitcher Jalen Beeks (3-2). Martin scored on an RBI groundout to third base by first baseman Peter Alonso.
After giving up a run in the second inning, Florida’s Turgeon then picked up the go-ahead RBI in the third frame scoring DH John Sternagel who had reached on a single to left field. Sternagel finished the day 1-2 with two walks and a run scored.
Martin continues to reach base, going 1-3 with a walk; he has reached base safely in 17 of 18 games so far. Catcher Taylor Gushue and right fielder Braden Mattson paced the hitting attack for Florida with both collecting two hits on the night.
Florida and Arkansas will play game two of the series Saturday at 7 PM. The pitching probables are sophomore Eric Hanhold (2-1) for Florida and sophomore Trey Killian (0-2) for the Razorbacks.