Connect with us
PSN is sponsored by Beaver County Auto

Pitt Baseball

Pitt Completes Sweep of No. 9 Florida State with 13-Inning Win

Published

on

Entering Sunday’s contest, Pitt baseball had already secured their first ever series win over Florida State after victories on Friday and Saturday night.

But there was still one more milestone that Pitt could pass on Sunday in Tallahassee. 

Pitt (6-1 overall, 3-0 ACC) hadn’t swept an ACC opponent in almost seven years before topping No. 9 Florida State (2-4 overall, 0-3 ACC), 9-7 in a thirteen-inning thriller that lasted just under five hours.

In the absence of expected starting pitcher, junior Billy Corcoran, head coach Mike Bell reached deep into his bullpen. His staff of relievers turned in a gutsy combined performance that opened the door for Pitt to come back and steal a dramatic win. 

Sunday’s finale began just as the first two games of the series had, with the Pitt offense striking first. Sophomore third baseman Sky Duff led off the game with a double. Two batters later, Junior designated hitter Ron Washington Jr. singled to right. The speedy Duff scored easily from second to give Pitt a 1-0 lead. 

Immediately following Washington in the order was redshirt senior infielder David Yanni, who launched his second home run of the season deep over the wall in right center field. Pitt had a 3-0 lead before the Seminoles even had a chance to pick up the bats.

 

Yanni was stellar on Sunday afternoon. In addition to his two-hit, four-RBI night at the plate, the six-year program veteran made several key defensive plays, including one that cut down a potentially game-winning Seminole run in the 12th inning. 

Pitt starting pitcher, senior Steven Hansen, filled in for the absent Corcoran on the mound. Hansen closed the game Saturday’s win and started Sunday’s. He only threw two innings, surrendering no runs, and was replaced by freshman lefty Chris Pouliot. 

In just his second career appearance, Pouliot struggled. He gave up five runs — four of which were earned — and three walks over just 1 ⅔ innings pitched. Pouliot had a rough outing, but wasn’t entirely responsible. A pair of errors from Duff at third extended the inning and allowed Florida State to post a crooked number in the bottom of the 3rd inning.

But the back half of Pitt’s bullpen was solid after Pouliot exited. Bell called upon 10 different pitchers during the marathon game. They threw a combined 146 pitches in the afternoon and struck out 12 as a staff. 

A heroic effort on the part of Panther pitchers gave their teammates time to revive the bats, and they returned not a moment too soon. Florida State scored four more times — twice in the fourth and twice again in the sixth — to take a 7-3 lead. 

Yanni’s second hit of the night — an RBI double — scored two more for Pitt in the seventh, but the Panthers still trailed by a pair of runs entering the ninth. 

Freshman Dom Popa — younger brother of Nico — pinch hit for junior conter fielder Jordan Anderson and led off the top of the ninth. He reached safely — clapping and yelling all the way down the first base line — after getting hit in the ribs by FSU’s redshirt junior righty, Jonah Scolaro. 

One batter later, Dom’s big brother Nico demolished a game-tying home run to left field. 

 

That was all Pitt would get that inning and the Seminoles were tied down in the ninth by Senior Chris Gomez. As the game entered extra innings, Gomez was an essential bridge to the back of the Pitt bullpen. He delivered three efficient, scoreless innings late in the game. 

Florida State freshman Bryce Hubbart was tasked with a long relief appearance. He manned the bump for the Seminoles through 72 pitches and 4 ⅓ innings and was solid through his first three, but he did end up responsible for the decisive two-out Pitt rally that secured the sweep.

In the 13th inning, a double from Duff and hit-by-pitch from Popa brought junior outfielder Kyle Hess to the plate with two on and two down. Hess roped another double into the left-center field gap. Both Duff and Popa scored to break the deadlock and make it 9-7 Pitt. 

Senior righty Jordan McCrum, who earned the save in Friday’s 1-0 win, was back on the mound on Sunday with another save ready to be secured. McCrum made quick work of the Seminoles in the bottom half of the inning. They went 1-2-3 and Pitt players lept out of the dugout in relief and joy. 

The Panthers have become a national story after toppling a top-10 opponent on the opening weekend of conference play. D1Baseball’s Aaron Fitt asserted after the game that Pitt is deserving of a spot in this week’s top-25 and praised the overall strength of the ACC. 

Pitt will get the week off before their next series. The Panthers will head north to the Carolinas, where the Duke Blue Devils await a three-game set beginning Friday afternoon at 4 p.m. from Druham, North Carolina.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
Continue Reading
Advertisement
2 Comments
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
2 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Eli
Eli
7 months ago

Nice write-up!

Crackerjack Kid
Crackerjack Kid
7 months ago

Nice coverage all weekend. Enjoyed the columns. Pitt looked disciplined a the plate and did a enough in the field for the wins. Looking how Bell’s crew continues through season 3 under his leadership. H2P!

 
Like Pittsburgh Sports Now on Facebook!
Send this to a friend