If UNF baseball doesn’t win, they sure come close

Josh Brannock

Photo Credit: Ali Blumenthal
Photo Credit: Ali Blumenthal

UNF baseball may not win every game, but they have consistently put themselves in the position to win games.

UNF’s (18-8) average margin of defeat this season is 2.25 runs. The only game this season UNF was down by more than one run headed into the seventh-inning, was a 5-2 loss to Jacksonville State, March 3.

But, when UNF wins, they win big.

In 18 wins, UNF has won by an average of 4.61 runs. They have won six games this season by a margin of six or more runs.

The trend of big wins and close loses continued for the team over spring break. Despite UNF traveling to party destinations over the break, they weren’t there for a good time.

The break started with a rematch against the University of Florida (10-12) March 19. The Gators were able to avenge a 7-6 loss, Feb. 26, and beat UNF 9-4.

UNF was down 4-3 headed into the bottom of the seventh-inning, but with two runs in the seventh and three runs in the eighth, UF pulled out the win.

UNF had to make a quick turn around and travel to Tallahassee, March 20, to play Florida A&M (1-21). With a 2-0 lead going into the bottom of the fifth,

UNF allowed FAMU to come back and tie the game. Before FAMU could enjoy its offensive production, UNF scored three runs in the top of the seventh.

UNF would hold FAMU scoreless for the rest of the game. They left Tallahassee with a 5-2 win, and a 16-7 record headed into conference play.

UNF, picked to finish fifth in the A-Sun preseason poll, started conference play against Lipscomb University March 22. in Nashville, Tenn.

UNF dominated in their first Lipscomb game from the start with four runs in the first inning, scoring a total of eight runs in the first four innings. With three innings of one-hit baseball from the bullpen, UNF began A-Sun play with an 8-2 win.

UNF captured the series in the second game against Lipscomb, March 23, with Kyle Westwood on the mound for the start. Lipscomb struck early with two runs in the bottom of the second, but UNF came back by scoring two runs per inning for three-straight innings and took command of the game.

Lipscomb came back to make it a one-run game, but UNF held the Bison off and won 7-5.

With three-straight wins, UNF looked to end its spring break road-trip with its second longest win streak of the year in the final game against Lipscomb March 24.

Revisiting the comeback trend from the start of the season, UNF didn’t strike until late. Down 1-0, UNF scored three runs in the top of the eighth. Lipscomb had its own plans, though, as it tied the game in the bottom of the eighth.

The game went into extra innings, but UNF couldn’t muster up any magic and fell to Lipscomb 4-3 after 10 innings of play.

The loss makes UNF 2-2 in extra innings this season.

UNF will play three games in three days against East Tennessee State, beginning March 28 at 6 p.m.