Welcome to Bait & Bits, a series on Hail Florida Hail that will feature one “bait” about an opposing school and some bits about the Florida Gators. Have any links that you want on Bait & Bits? Tweet it at us @HailFloridaHail or @BrettKaplan13 or email it to us at [email protected].
SEC Baseball Teams. After Florida’s three-game sweep of the Alabama Crimson Tide in Tuscaloosa, the Gators have won 11 straight conference games, which ties a UF record. It hasn’t come against the easiest of competition. Florida beat No. 4 South Carolina in Columbia for the first two games of the streak, then swept Georgia and Missouri at home, and last weekend swept No. 20 Alabama. Bama had been two games back of Florida for the SEC lead. UF has played the toughest schedule in the country and has an incredible 8-1 record against top 4 teams. They’ll look to continue their conference streak Thursday when they host No. 10 Vanderbilt in the home finale.
Casey Turgeon Named SEC Player of the Week. The SEC named Florida second baseman Casey Turgeon their Player of the Week in baseball after an incredible performance against Alabama. Turgeon went 8-for-11 at the plate to hit his home area code (.727) for the series and also added two RBI and three runs. He slugged .909 and had an on-base percentage of .800. That means he was on base, either by walk or hit, an amazing 80% of his plate appearances. Turgeon had multiple hits in every game this past weekend. Tugeon also got it done in the field with a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage and four double plays. (GatorZone)
Gators Move Up in the Rankings. It was a big week for Florida baseball as they took three from No. 20 Alabama. They deserved to move up in the rankings, and that’s exactly what they did. The Gators jumped to the No. 4 ranking in the Baseball America, Collegiate Baseball, and Perfect Game Polls. They moved up to No. 8 in the USA Today Coaches Poll and also received a first-place vote. The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) Poll still has Florida on the outside of the top-10, but knocking on the door at No. 11. According to WarrenNolan.com, UF has an RPI of 2 as they move closer and closer to nabbing one of the eight national seeds available in the upcoming NCAA Tournament.
Five Softball Players Named All-SEC. In the most competitive conference in collegiate softball, Florida managed to get five players on the All-SEC list. Second baseman Kelsey Stewart led the way on the First Team All-SEC. Pitcher Hannah Rogers and third baseman Stephanie Tofft landed on the Second Team All-SEC. The Gators had one on the Freshman All-SEC Team with outfielder Justine McLean’s nomination. Florida led the way with four designations on the SEC All-Defensive Team: Rogers, Stewart, and Tofft joined first baseman Taylor Schwarz with the honor for the league’s second best defensive team. (GatorZone)
Bradley Beal Continues to Impress. Bradley Beal leads the Washington Wizards in scoring in the NBA Playoffs. Beal is averaging 20.7 points in his first taste of the postseason. But what he did last night is pretty amazing. Beal scored 25 points, 7 rebounds, 7 assists, and 5 steals. The only other player to have that kind of statline before his 21st birthday? Magic Johnson. Beal also joined Magic on another exclusive list, being the only other player to score 25 points three times in the playoffs before he turned 21. Brad turns 21 on June 28.