Florida Gators Set For Rematch against Virginia Cavaliers in College World Series


Jun 17, 2015; Omaha, NE, USA; The Florida Gators players celebrate after defeating the Miami Hurricanes 10-2 in the 2015 College World Series at TD Ameritrade Park. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

Just like in the opener of the 2015 College World Series, the Florida Gators stuck the Miami Hurricanes kind of like, well, a hurricane.

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The Gators (51-17) smashed four homers on June 17, knocking off the Hurricanes to the tune of 10-2, giving the Gators the right to play the Virginia Cavaliers (41-22) on Friday.

The 10-2 win for Florida is the latest in a recent run of dominance over their in-state rivals.

This was the second win the Gators earned over the Hurricanes in the 2015 College World Series, the Gators have beaten the Hurricanes four out of five games this season and Coach Kevin O’Sullivan is now an impressive 8-0 against the Hurricanes in postseason play.

In an article written by Scott Carter for gatorzone.com, outfielder Harrison Bader said, “We’re at a stage now where we’re fighting for our lives.”

All of this leads the Gators to the Cavaliers on Friday, where they have to beat Virginia twice in order to advance the Finals.  Florida narrowly lost to Virginia earlier this week by a score of 1-0.

Keys to the Game

In their previous game, the Cavaliers absolutely shut down the high-powered Gators offense, limiting them to only a paltry two hits in the loss. Freshman catcher

JJ Schwarz

has to keep bashing opposing pitchers, where he has 18 homers and 78 RBIs in 68 games in 2015. St. Louis Cardinals third-round pick Harrison Bader, who had a homerun and walk against Miami, also has to continue getting on base (16 homeruns, 33 walks). If the Gators want any shot at winning the next two games, they have to bring some of the thunder they brought against Miami.

Jun 17, 2015; Omaha, NE, USA; Florida Gators outfielder Buddy Reed (23) watches his home run during the first inning against the Miami Hurricanes in the 2015 College World Series at TD Ameritrade Park. Mandatory Credit: Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

  • The starting pitching for Florida has been white hot as of late. In the loss to the Cavaliers, J. Puk held Virginia to only one hit through five innings before being pulled after allowing three straight singles. Against Miami, Alex Faedo struck out seven Hurricanes in his own five innings of work, the most Ks by a Gator in the CWS since 2005. If the Gators continue to toss the rock like they have been, Virginia could be in a dogfight.
  • Florida has to strike early. The Gators are a phenomenal 23-1 in 2015 when they score in the first inning. Scoring early would not only give the Gators the early lead but it also would put huge pressure on the Cavaliers, which could lead to mistakes by their pitching and defense.

    What do you think Gator fans? Will Florida knock off the Cavaliers in game one and continue their march in the CWS? Let us know what you think!