TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – No. 5 Florida State (14-0, 2-0 ACC) scored eight runs in the first two innings including seven in the second en route to a 9-4 victory over Boston College (3-10, 0-2 ACC) Saturday night in front of 4,534 fans on Mike Martin Field inside Dick Howser Stadium.
Jose Brizuela tied a career-high with three hits in game two on a pair of doubles and a single. Josh Delph went 2-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored, while Seth Miller finished 2-for-3 with two doubles.
Delph, DJ Stewart and Marcus Davis all drove in two runs to pace the Seminoles as seven of the FSU’s 10 hits on the evening went for extra bases.
“It was a great boost to get off to an early start especially against a good team like Boston College,” said Stewart.
With the win, Florida State remained undefeated on the year and is off to their third best start in school history.
The win on Saturday also secured the series victory for the Seminoles pushing their all-time mark to 20-2 when opening ACC play.
Similar to the start against the Eagles on Friday night, FSU grabbed the lead with a run in the first when Delph doubled to left center and scored two batters later on a groundout to second off the bat of Davis.
Florida State broke the game open with a seven-run second as six straight Seminoles reached against BC starter Josh Gorman (1-2) after the Eagle right hander got John Nogowski to fly out in foul territory to open the inning.
Giovanny Alfonzo opened the scoring with an RBI double to right. Delph picked up his second hit of the game with a two-run single to left and Stewart smashed his first career triple to straight away center to drive in John Sansone and Delph. After a Davis sac-fly brought home Stewart, Stephen McGee closed out the scoring in the second on a two-out solo shot to left for his second home run of the season.
“That’s obviously what we were hoping it would do and we could come up and do some ‘so called’ damage and put the game away but they started pecking away,” said head coach Mike Martin on running out to the big lead early.
The home run ended the night for Gorman after just 1.2 innings. The sophomore right hander allowed eight runs on seven hits and one walk.
The run support was more than enough for FSU starter Scott Sitz as the senior right hander improved to 3-0 on the year.
“Scotty pitched a very solid baseball game,” said Martin. “He got a couple of breaks there in the second when we threw a seven spot up but I think what really impressed me the most about tonight’s ball game was that once we got a lead no body sat on it. It was a good win for our baseball team.”
“It was nice,” said Sitz. “I am not going to complain; seven runs are always great.”
The Jacksonville Beach, Fla., native went 5.1 innings as he allowed four runs, one earned, on six hits as he walked two and struck out five. BC’s two-run third inning were the first two runs given up by Sitz this year bringing to a close his consecutive scoreless innings streak, which dates back to last year’s start against UCLA in the College World Series, at 22.0 innings.
“I knew about,” said Sitz on the scoreless streak. “But you know everything is going to come to an end sometime. I was just happy that it went that long.”
Boston College cracked the scoreboard for the first time in the series in the third as two runs scored on a fielding error at shortstop. With runners at first and second and two outs, Sitz would get out of the inning without further damage getting Logan Hoggarth looking at a called third strike.
The Eagles continued to chip away at FSU’s lead scoring a run in the fourth and one more in the sixth to cut the deficit to 8-4.
BC strung together three straight two-out hits in the fourth off Sitz on a double down the line in right by John Hennessy, a single to center by Jimmy Dowdell and a run scoring double by Matt McGovern that caromed off the wall in right. Dowdell tried to score from first on the play, but the relay throw from Seth Miller to Sansone to McGee nailed the BC left fielder at the plate for the final out of the inning.
The Eagles would take advantage of the second Seminole error of the game in the sixth to score their third unearned run off Sitz. BC opened the inning with a single and a walk before Stephen Sauter flied out to right. With the left handed hitting Hennessy coming to the plate, Martin went to the bullpen and called on Bryant Holtmann. The southpaw got Hennessy swinging on strikes and looked to get out of the inning when Dowdell hit a ground ball to third, but the throw by Brizuela short hopped Nogowski at first allowing Hoggarth to score from third.
Holtmann would close out the sixth getting McGovern to strike out swinging. The Albers, Ill., native wrapped up his outing on Saturday working 2.0 shutout innings as he walked three and struck out three.
After Holtmann walked back-to-back hitters with one out in the eighth, Martin went to the bullpen for the second time on Saturday calling on Gage Smith. And on just two pitches, the Tallahassee, Fla., native got the Seminoles back in the dugout getting Dowdell to ground into an inning ending double play.
FSU pushed its lead to 9-4 in the bottom of the eighth when Miller doubled down the line in right and scored two batters later on a safety squeeze by Sansone.
Smith returned to pitch the ninth to earn his first save of the season. McGovern led off the inning with a single to right, but was quickly eliminated from the base paths when Gabriel Hernandez grounded into a double play. Blake Butera made the final out of the game as he grounded out to Alfonzo at short.
Florida State and Boston College will return to the diamond for the series finale on Sunday, March 10 with first pitch scheduled for 1:00 p.m. Sunday’s game will air on ESPN3. Fans can listen to the game on the All-Access player, while locally fans can hear the game on 100.7 FM.
As always, Seminole fans can follow the Noles on twitter @FSU_Baseball and remember to like the Seminoles on Facebook (www.facebook.com/FSUBaseball). Live stats for all three games will be available via gametracker.